Product Review: The "Rose Double Boiler" From Rose Levy Beranbaum's New Cookware Line
J. GarbeeRose Double Boiler
The cookbook author has teamed up with NewMetro Design, the company behind the BeaterBlade, a stand-mixer paddle attachment with what amounts to a rubber spatula attached to the edges. Among Beranbaum's new products: her version of the BeaterBlade, a handheld zester and juicer, the "Rose Cook and Store" (a 4-quart saucepan with a plastic storage lid and flared sides that Beranbaum says helps "facilitate [the] reduction of liquids") and a stainless steel caramel pot with a non-stick coating.
We don't have any complaints about our trusty copper pot's work (caramel sauce, etc.) over the years, and the paddle attachment that came with our stand mixer seems to have done a fine job judging by the hundreds of cookies and cakes that have disappeared from our kitchen counter. But one product stood out among Beranbaum's new offerings: the Rose Double Boiler ($59.99), actually a single pot double boiler. Get the review after the jump.
J. GarbeeRose Double Boiler + The Competition
The Promises: Beranbaum's version is essentially a double boiler without the insert -- a pretty great idea if you've ever suffered from steam burns when taking out the insert or the bowl on your makeshift double boiler (at left in the photo above). This is a single pot with an "internal water chamber" and is small compared to those wide double boilers of your grandmother's era (a good thing); a flared rim promises "drip free" pouring.
Note: The idea of an all-in-one, fully enclosed double boiler takes some getting used to. You pour a small amount of water through the plastic handle -- basically the same idea as filling up an iron. Steam comes out of the handle to let you know it's ready to use, which can be a bit startling the first time you use it (position the double boiler handle away from you so as to avoid the steam). But once you get the hang of it, it's not difficult.
- Significantly less expensive, if not nearly as that stunning, as that Mauviel hand-hammered copper boiler on your Amazon wish list. Nor does it exactly have the same "stovetop to table" appeal. But unless you have some incredibly generous friends, you're probably only going to get the Mauviel if you pony up for it yourself.
- As a single pot, Beranbaum's version is less cumbersome than many standard 1.75-quart double boilers on the market. You can also toss it on a shelf without worrying about the insert coming out. When you're dealing with limited shelf space, that can make the difference between whether you pull out that double boiler or just take the risk.
- Inside, the walls of the pot are etched with measurement markings so you can see how much liquid you've added to the pot.
- Refrigerator friendly, which comes in handy if you're making an ice cream custard base.
- Dishwasher safe.
- Doesn't need polishing (though clearly from the photo above, we don't worry about polishing our Mauviel version, either).
- Unlike a regular double boiler, you can't see the water in the fully enclosed stainless steel chamber, so you need to be more alert about refilling.
- You can only add ½ pint of water at a time or you'll suffer that same fate of the water coming right back at you when you over-fill an iron. We recommend using a funnel to fill the water chamber.
- Similar products are already out there, such as the BonJour version. Though the Rose Double Boiler does not have an issue with a leaky handle as some reviewers of the BonJour suggest (we have not tried that version ourselves), getting all of the water out of the chamber after use is a bit tricky. But as the pot is stainless steel, the excess water that remains shouldn't be a problem.
- It's less than copper double boilers, yes, but still on pricey side considering that the pastry chef's makeshift standby, a stainless steel bowl on top of a sauce pot, works pretty darn great.
Best For: Those with limited shelf space or looking for a one-pot solution to a double boiler, Beranbaum fans (it would be a nice gift, as her first name is stamped on the boiler), people who have a thing for the engineering dynamics of an iron (we know you're out there).
The Rose Double Boiler is available online at Bed Bath & Beyond.
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