Pros: Easy to pump; it has a brake!; durable; decent-sized capacity
Cons: Hard to dry off
Rating: 5 out of 5
First posted 10/11/2002
Ahh, salad. We’ve been dieting again, so lettuce is a handy thing to have around the house. We like to buy our lettuce at a local farm when possible, however, so it’s always dirtier than those pre-washed salad baggies from the grocery store. (Okay, sometimes we go steal lettuce from our neighbor’s garden. It’s okay, she said we could. She also grows the best tomatoes I’ve ever had! Err, uh, I’m getting distracted, aren’t I?)
In an attempt to have clean, nice, non-gritty salad lettuce, we purchased the Oxo Pump Action Salad Spinner. Unlike most other Oxo implements we’ve dealt with, no part of this salad spinner has yet broken – true testament to its sturdiness!
The inner bowl is a latticework of white plastic, with holes small enough to keep shreds of lettuce in yet plentiful enough to let out all the dirt. We follow the Alton Brown-approved method of cleaning lettuce – we put the lettuce in the latticework bowl, put that inside the outer plastic bowl, fill with cold water, and allow it to sit for at least a few minutes. This allows the dirt to settle to the bottom.
Then we lift the latticework bowl out and pour out the water. Put it back into the now-empty clear plastic bowl, and top with the funky-looking lid. Release the “pump,” which will pop up (I recommend having a hand on it so it doesn’t pop up very suddenly and loudly – spring-released and all that). Then press down repeatedly on the pump, spinning the inner bowl – like most Oxo products, this is very easy on the hands.
Now here’s the cool part. Unlike any other salad spinner I’ve seen, this one has a brake! When you want to stop spinning your lettuce, press the little black button and it’ll immediately stop the spinning. Lift off the top, and you’re done!
The only minor problem is that it’s hard to dry everything off. The top mechanism is enclosed, and it’s likely to get at least a little wet inside during the spinning process. You just have to put it in a rack and wait for it to dry – you can’t dry the inside with a towel. Likewise, it’s tough to dry the latticework bowl with a towel because of all those nooks and crannies.
Now go to your neighbor’s garden, “lift” some lettuce and tomatoes, and have yourself a salad! Oh, uh, maybe the grocery store would be a better idea…