Spirooli: Does it work?

The Spirooli is promoted as being the "quickest and easiest way there is to cut just about any vegetable." It has four suction legs, measures about 12-by-6 inches, and stands nearly 9 inches tall. So consider storage before you get too mesmerized by the slicing possibilities.

Spirooli uses a circular motion to slice, shred or cut foods into curly strips, rounded chips or short pieces. To operate the device you to slice off one end of the fruit or vegetable to get a flat surface, slide one of three specialty blades into place and stick the cut end of the food into the food holder. You need both hands for operation -- one to crank the handle and one to guide the veggie through the blade.

In our test, the spiral slicer made fast work of a potato, quickly producing a pile spiral cut spuds. It also did a speedy job of slicing zucchini, although in both instances, it left a core -- the result of the slicing blade construction. Unless it's an apple or other fruit that has a seedy core you would not eat, the core is perfectly edible and will still need to be sliced by hand to avoid waste.

Spirooli also did a good job of slicing an apple. But it also sent a lot of apple juice dripping down and pooling on the counter. Again, there was a fair sized slice of apple left on the slicing blade that would need to be cut by hand. In the case of red cabbage, the Spirooli sliced through an entire head much quicker than I could do by hand, leaving several large leaves attached to the blade, which required hand slicing.

On a scale of one to four, I give Spirooli, maybe even two and a half stars. It's fast, it's functional, and it's reasonably easy, but I found it to be more messy than cutting or slicing or chopping by hand. It does win points for spiral cutting and could be a handy tool if you have a large quantity of food to slice. Just be prepared to hand-cut the leftover pieces and plan on a clean-up job with apples, tomatoes or other food with high juice content. It sells for around $25 at Bed Bath & Beyond, Amazon, and other stores that carry As Seen On TV products.