According to Wikipedia: A sieve, or sifter, separates wanted elements from unwanted material using a filter such as a mesh or net. However, in cooking, especially with flour a sifter is used to aerate the substance, among other things. A strainer is a type of sieve typically used to separate a solid from a liquid. The word “sift” derives from sieve. A colander is a bowl-shaped kitchen utensil with holes in it used for draining food such as pasta.
Well, I guess I have about half a dozen in all sizes and I pretty much just call them “strainers.” I just realized as I was starting this latest entry for the blog, that I used three fixing dinner tonight. I used a strainer to seperate the vegetables from the pan juices for the gravy I was going to make. Then the macaroni was drained in a colander for the mac and cheese. Finally I used a small strainer to apply a dusting of powdered sugar on the plum cake from a new recipe that I made for dessert. I told you I knew how to use them, didn’t I?