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Oft overlooked in our kitchen arsenal, the microplane makes quick work out of zesting a lemon or grating hard cheese. Maybe you've even used your microplane to grate ginger — that miso-ginger vinaigrette never tasted better — but did you know it's a wizard at grating nuts?

While adding chopped nuts to a salad, soup, or pasta dish can be mighty tasty, the massive chunks and uneven bits often feel out of place, and they don't look that pretty either. Instead, using a fine microplane blade (like this one from Amazon for $16.99), run a handful of nuts, like walnuts or cashews, over the microplane and you'll get beautiful, fluffy shavings. It takes about a minute, and the chef-like maneuver will seriously amp up the flavor of your dish.

You can also use the cotton-candy like topping as a garnish for ice cream or brownies. Marbled brownies with hazelnut shavings, anyone?