Bowl-shaped metal sieves are among the kitchen’s most versatile tools. They’re used to drain liquids from solids, refine the texture of sauces, and sift dry ingredients. We have about fifteen different sieves in the test kitchen, but only three of them get used regularly, and these are the ones you should have in your kitchen, too.
Look for sieves with handles made of heatproof rubber or metal; avoid plastic handles. The metal mesh has to be able to handle some pressure without pulling loose from its frame, so press on it a few times to be sure it’s sturdily constructed. Hooks on the sieve frame opposite the handle should have a slight curve to help the sieve stay hooked over a bowl or pot.