So you are moving out to live by yourself in your new apartment, which would translate to having basic kitchen items in your space. With several foods and drinks that require straining in the kitchen, it would be necessary to have straining equipment nearby. But what if that’s not the case? Would you just give up the idea of cooking, or would you take time to learn how to strain without a strainer?
I bet you’d choose to master some straining tricks so that the next time your coffee maker is down or you want a healthy glass of juice you don’t get a little stranded. It’s also easier to manage your storage space without the colander taking the larger part of it.
Now let us understand the different ways you can strain your tea, coffee, juice, and pasta without a strainer.
How to Strain tea Without a Strainer
Several household items can serve as a strainer. Some of these items will take you by surprise since I know they never crossed your mind that they may serve as straining alternatives. These alternative methods include:
i) Using coffee filters
If you are a coffee lover, you cannot lack a few coffee filters lying around somewhere. Unbleached filters are best; you can eliminate the paper taste by cleansing them in hot water.
To strain your tea, you’ll need to place the filter in your cup/mug with some tea leaves poured onto it. Next, pour some hot water over the tea leaves in a circular motion and leave the tea to brew your desired taste.
You can also use these filters in a teapot by tying the filter around the tea pots’ spout then pouring hot water into a mug. After the tea has brewed, remove the filter with the tea leaves and toss it in the bin.
ii) Using paper towel
Brewing tea with paper towels is quite similar to straining with coffee filters. But ensure that the paper towels are of high quality, so they don’t fall apart during the straining process. Note that these paper towels have microscopic fibers that might ruin your teas taste. So it is necessary to cleanse them first in hot water.
To strain with the paper towel, fold it in half to a rectangle shape and then fold it again into half, so you have a square. Next, open the square corner, pour your tea leaves in it, and place them in a mug. The last step should be pouring in a cup of hot water and letting your tea brew.
iii) Using the double cup method
This method is the simplest of all. You will need two mugs and a cup. With one of your mug, pour your loose tea and hot water and let it brew. Place the cup in the mug as you pour the brewed tea into the second mug.
How to Strain Pasta Without a Strainer
Colanders tend to be large, and you can forgo purchasing them if you have limited storage space in your kitchen. But then comes the headache when you are craving some pasta. Here is how to strain your pasta without a strainer.
Tongs can be used to get that pasta out of the hot water. After scooping, hold up the tongs above the pot, allow the water to drain, and then pour the pasta into another bowl. A fork can also be a good substitute for tongs but beware that this method can take some time.
2. Slotted spoon
A slotted spoon has holes in it. As you scoop your pasta, the water drains out through the holes leaving the pasta liquid-free. Beware that this process could take up some time.
The spoon method works best with shorter and less stringy pasta. A spoon can also be used to scoop beans and your blanched vegetables. With your pasta, you will need to lift the food off the pot is scoop the amount you comfortable handling, then cradle the edge of the spoon against the pot in a tilted manner, so water drains.
In this method, you should leave your lid ¼ inches askew and hold it down, ensuring that you got a pair of mittens in your hands, so you do not burn. Hold the pot away from you and pour the pasta water. As the liquid flows, the pasta remains intact in the pot.
How to Strain Juice Without a Strainer
Freshly prepared juice tends to be pulpy. It can be a challenging task to undertake without a strainer. Below are some of the alternative ways you can incorporate to make that glass of orange juice
1. Using a plastic bag
Make many small holes with a thin needle in your plastic bag. The holes should be tiny so no pulp can pass through them. Place the plastic bag (hanging down) on top of a pitcher. Pour the juice into the plastic bag and let the juice drain through the holes.
2. Using a cheesecloth
Place a cheesecloth over a bowl or mug and pour your blended juice ingredients over it. The liquid will start to pass through the cheesecloth, collecting into the bowl.
After you pour all the blended contents onto the cheesecloth, hold it in the corners and twist it, squeezing out the juice. However, you should not be too aggressive when squeezing the juice out, for one can easily mess up clothes.
How to Strain Coffee Without a Strainer
The biggest nightmare for a coffee fanatic is getting up to a dead coffee-making machine. This is how to ensure you brew your coffee when you run out of filters at home.
1. Using a dish towel
Get a clean dish towel and secure it in your mug with a rubber band. Pour 2 tablespoon of ground coffee into the towel and pour your hot water over them. When all water has passed through the piece of cloth, lift it carefully and rinse it.
2. Using reusable tea bags
If there are some reusable tea bags in your space, grab them, add your ground coffee into it, seal it up, and place it in a mug with boiled water. Leave it to sit for a few minutes, so it brews well, then removes the teabag from the now brewed coffee.
3. Old school stove method
Getting your coffee ready on the stove is quite easy. Heat some water in a pot on the stovetop. Stir in your coffee and when well combined, lift from the stove. Allow the coffee to sit for some minutes, and then pour it into your mug.
4. Cowboy method
This method involves boiling some water in a pot. Pour ground coffee into the boiling water and stir. Leave it to brew for up to ten minutes. Go ahead and pour your coffee into your mug and enjoy!
There are numerous straining options you can try out. You can even experiment on the above straining tricks even when you have a strainer in your kitchen. So that the next time the strainers are not in reach, you will have an easy time maneuvering through the whole straining process.
Rita C. Donnell (Jennifer) has spent the last 26 years studying and practicing nutrition science. She has used a larger part of this time in improving people’s livelihoods. She has done so by coming up with unquestionable ideas on how to tackle food problems in her community. Readmore