This holiday season, I entered every give away contest I found, from the Viking whole kitchen appliance offer, to the Bon Appetit VitaMix blender give away, to a simple cookbook set. The only one that I “won” was the Prepara Facebook contest, which you entered by Liking their Facebook page. Myself and 99 others were rewarded with the 3-in-one peeler.
Prepara Trio 3-Blade Peeler
The Prepara 3-blade peeler is shaped like a standard hand held vegetable peeler but is unique in that it has 3 retractable blades which store in the handle for safety when not in use. The blades are made from Japanese surgical steel for durability and edge retention. The peeler can be used easily by right or left handed users. The blade cartridge comes out for easy cleaning and is top rack dishwasher safe. The main shell frame has a non-slip grip that fits easily in the hand which can make you more confident when using it. Initially when attempting to remove the cartridge for cleaning, I couldn’t get it to release even when selecting the arrow on the base. I found that after lining up the arrow on the base, you need to push down on the blade button, toward the dial base, to get it to eject the cartridge.
I spent a several minutes playing with the peeler, without reading the included instructions, of course. It has a dial on the bottom to select which blade you want, depending on the job at hand, and a gliding finger button to push the blades up and down. You can switch from one blade to another in a couple of seconds and quickly move on to the next vegetable task without needing to dig in the drawer for another tool.
During the preparation of one recent meal, I used all three blades. The design of the peeler made switching blades easy which allowed my kitchen tasks to go quicker.
The first blade I used is what Prepara calls the Soft Blade. It is a serrated peeling blade that works best with soft-skinned foods like peaches and tomatoes. In this case, I wanted to skin a tomato for a quick salsa I was making as a topping for a side dish. The blade allowed me to peel the tomato without removing too much pulp. Serrated blades are sharper than smooth edge blades allowing them to work effectively with soft skin fruits, but I have used it to peel any vegetable.
The second one I used is called the Firm blade. This is what I would call the “normal” vegetable peeling blade which as we know works well with the skin of hard produce like potatoes, carrots and cucumbers. Aided by the sharpness of the blade, I found the peeler removes the vegetable skin with the lightest touch. For this particular meal, I was peeling the tough rind from broccoli before steaming. Why waste all the stem of broccoli when peeling the tough skin provides you with more tasty food? Using this blade I was also able to make thick cucumber strips for a salad. You can make thicker slices by pressing firmly on the fruit and the rotating blade will dig in deeply as it glides down the length.
The last blade I used Prepara calls the Julienne blade. This blade has more pronounced raised ridges, somewhat widely spread to create julienne strips of carrots or cucumbers for salads or shoestring potatoes or zucchini. In this case I wanted the carrot in strips for the salad. The blade was able to easily work across the surface of the carrot to produce the julienne I wanted. I did steady the carrot on the cutting board by laying it flat then running the peeler along the top side. At first I didn’t think it had done what I wanted, but as I picked up the sliced carrot, the strips easily fell apart into individual sections.
The Prepara peeler can be stored with all blades retracted into the handle or one blade can be engaged and covered with the plastic cover included in the packaging. It certainly takes up less space in a drawer than three peelers would and will not be a danger of cutting you while you rummage through the drawer looking for it.
This tool is sharp, versatile and easy to use. It does in fact give you the ability to have many tools at your disposal without needing three separate peelers.
While Prepara isn’t alone in creating a multi-blade peeler – Joseph Joseph makes a product like this that has a completely different design approach – Prepara has created a functional, versatile tool that you would be happy to own or give as a gift.
*Update – After using this peeler for 2 years now, I must report that a piece has broken off. This piece holds the blade cartridge in the peeler handle. While I can still move the blades up and down in the slot for use, it does not lock in place. I have not experienced any problems while peeling.
I have no idea where, how or when this happened, but wanted to let people know this might occur.