Use Metal Hairpins To Easily Pit Cherries And Olives

Sometimes the best kitchen gadgets are the most low-tech ones. Sure, you can sink a load of money into a specialised gadget to get the job done, but why bother when you can use something you probably already have? In the case of cherries and olives, think hairpins.

A rack of simple, metal bobby pins will run you about a dollar or so at your local convenience store or pharmacy, and they’re the perfect size to get around the pits in cherries and ripe olives – especially big fresh ones. Just push the ends in, make sure the ends are on either side of the pit, and push until the ends pop out the other side of the cherry or olive. Grab the ends and pull them all the way through, bringing the pit along with it.

Reuse if you want, but author Hanne Blank, suggests that a box of a hundred will likely last a while even if you only use one per cherry or olive. She says:

U-bend metal hairpins are the best cherry pitters around, at least if you’re only doing a pie’s worth or so. They also work pretty well on ripe olives (they’re not sturdy enough for use on green olives) and for hulling strawberries. You can buy a package of a hundred for about a dollar at a beauty supply store, and that will last you years and years.

Sure, you can buy specialised pitting gadgets for your kitchen, but they’ll inevitably end up in your junk drawer. You know, the one you really shouldn’t have, especially if you’ve followed our Geek’s Guide to Rebooting Your Kitchen. Try using something cheap, or that you already have, instead.

Blank goes on in her post to describe some other great low-tech kitchen hacks, like using baby food spoons to stuff mushroom caps, fill deviled eggs, and more. What are some of your favourite unintentional uses of kitchen gear? Share your tips in the comments.

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