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Old 11-04-2006, 02:37 PM   #1
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Question Do any of you own a double boiler?

Don't see or hear much about this cooking vessel, but I DO have one. It was very popular in the '50s, '60s, '70s and the '80s. Pyrex used to make one that had glass handles.

It used to come included in cookware sets or as an option to the sets. It's still a very handy and indispensable item in the kitchen for making delicate sauces and custards for cakes, pies and ice cream. It helps keep the mixture from burning, curdling or cooking too fast.

It consists of two small pots - one slightly smaller one fitting inside the other. Food in the upper pot is gently cooked by the heat and steam that comes from the boiling water in the lower pot.

Mine came with my Visions cookware that I bought in the mid '80s. It's now more or less a bowl with side handles that fits snuggly into the top of the largest sauce pot.

I STILL use it now and then for delicate sauces, puddings, custards for ice cream, etc.. What do you use yours for if you have one?

Of coarse, you can improvise by using a SS mixing bowl over a pot of boiling water to achieve similar results.

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Old 11-04-2006, 02:42 PM   #2
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I have an ancient enamel one and I love it. I use it for custards and melting chocolate mainly, and love it both because its deliciously retro and because I remember being knee high to a grasshopper and my mother using it. I occasionally speed up soften butter in it on an icy day.
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Old 11-04-2006, 02:57 PM   #3
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Yes, it can also be used to melt chocolate so that it won't burn.

I think my mom once had that set as well! I remember her using it to make the custard for banana pudding. Incidentally, I made pastry cream in mine for banana pudding last spring!! Pastry cream seems to hold up much better than ordinary custard, I think, because of the technique that's used to make it.

Mirro once made double boilers with metal handles. But i guess they aren't as popular as theyh one were years ago. Probably because now people use a bowl over a pot of boiling water.
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Old 11-04-2006, 03:00 PM   #4
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I always use a saucier and a stainless steel bowl.
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Old 11-04-2006, 03:02 PM   #5
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I also own a saucier, but I never tried any of the SS bowls to see which one would fit on it.
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Old 11-04-2006, 03:23 PM   #6
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I think double-boilers are pretty much still a norm - especially with bakers. I think they're not mentioned because they're not considered unusual. I think they don't come with cooking sets anymore because there are cheaper, alternative ways to improvise.
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Old 11-04-2006, 03:46 PM   #7
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I have a double boiler too...stainless steel....but I don't use it too often....I also use a saucier and a ss.bowl.
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Old 11-04-2006, 03:48 PM   #8
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I have one, but rarely use it, except for making whiskey sauce for bread pudding.

Does that mean I have more gadgets than brains?
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Old 11-04-2006, 04:02 PM   #9
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When I attended cooking school, the chefs there used a SS bowl over a pot of boiling water for making Chocolate Ganache and other delicate frostings.
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Old 11-04-2006, 04:04 PM   #10
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Corey, that's what I did before I bought my DB (also from BB&B).
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