For some people, cooking is not a mundane task, it is an art. It is a way to express creativity by carefully crafting a meal which is not only delicious, but artistically pleasing to the eye. For others, cooking brings joy and contentment. These people find satisfaction in carefully crafting a homemade meal for friends and family. To them, a meal is more than food, it is a bonding time.

However, sometimes those who love to cook are hindered by personal disabilities and handicaps which make cooking a little more difficult. This is especially true when it comes to tasks such as chopping. Trying to get the right size and consistency can be difficult for anyone; nevertheless, it can be even more difficult for those who can only use one hand. Trying to hold the board, food, and knife all at the same time is impossible when only one hand is available. Because of the difficulty associated with such tasks, one-handed cookers can often become frustrated and choose to let someone else do the cooking.

But before cookers throw in their towels, it is important for them to know that in recent years, designers have recognized the need for a chopping board built specifically for one-handed users. As a result, several creative boards have been designed and tested. Recently, Core 77 featured a post discussing three of the most unique cutting board concepts for one-handed choppers. Although these designs have great potential, each board presents its own dilemma, thus making room for even more improvements in the future.

The first design Core 77 features is the Mezzaluna. This chopping block utilizes a heavy and sturdy base with a carefully designed bowl shape indention. This allows users to place their herbs and other light ingredients in the bowl shaped hole and chop away using only one hand without fear of their ingredients scattering everywhere. However, there is a dilemma when using this chopping block. Because of its design, it is not ideal for even slices or chopping bulky foods; therefore, a person who can only chop with one hand will have to invest in an additional board for other items.

Another example of a one-handed cutting board is the Etac Deluxe One-Handed Food Prep and Cutting Board. This board is uniquely designed not only for cutting but also for mixing. The unique clamp securely holds a variety of bowl sizes making it easy to stir, fold, and whip ingredients with one hand. The clamp also assists in cutting bulky foods in half or into large chunks. For slices which need to be thinner and even, the vertical pins on the board can hold food in place while you carefully cut. Although this board makes cooking a lot easier, there are some issues regarding the pins as they can hinder chopping and can sometimes be a potential hazard when trying to place your food securely on the spikes.

A final idea which is being generated for one-handed choppers is a design by Sichen Sun. After seeing a one-handed woman make her own chopping block, Sun began to experiment with a design which would make it easy for anyone to chop one handed. After numerous tests, her latest prototype features gears which can slide together to securely hold the food. While the user is chopping, they can press a rack with their body which moves the gears and slowly pushes the food out, allowing the user to successfully complete their chopping without having to  re-position the ingredient. Sun’s design is very unique and has the potential to become an ideal chopping block once design elements such as gear shifts and issues with food getting stuck in the gears are successfully improved.

Although these chopping boards present their own technical issues, they are a step in the right direction towards helping one-handed cookers get back in the kitchen. The inability to use one hand due to injury, age, or other elements should never hinder anyone from partaking in any activity. Therefore, it is vital that designers continue to look at ways to improve not only kitchen appliances but other elements which could help those with disabilities never miss out on the things they truly enjoy.

For more information on these cutting boards, as well as pictures, check out the post here


The post Rethinking the Chopping Board appeared first on Gifts with Style.

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