By Karen Ciano of QUINCY LANE.
I was a fence sitter & maybe a little sceptical when it comes to the Thermomix. I had heard people raving about them, in an almost ‘cult like’ way, but didn’t really know the full story. I hadn’t done any research, as it wasn’t really ever on my radar, as a $2,000 piece of kitchen equipment! So you are aware, I make a living from a $300 mixer, I don’t even own a fancy Kitchen Aid, so this seemed ridiculous to me.
I arrived at my hosting friends house, who has four children & a busy household. One of her four has severe allergies to gluten & eggs, so she is very conscious of what they eat & eating well. I was pretty sure she was going to purchase one, even before the demo & that’s cool, I know she’ll use it.
The demonstrator was setting the machine up, I was surprised at the size of it, as its capacity isn’t actually that big. I think a lot of people have the misconception that’s it’s just a fancy & expensive slow cooker, but in fact, due to its small capacity you can’t actually fit a decent sized cut of meat in it anyway.
The three of us were asked what sort of cook we are. The three of us are very different. Me, I like to do things the old way, as I was taught. The busy mum with one child with allergies, who mostly eats organic whole foods, with a very good knowledge of food & the busy corporate who claims she can’t cook.
We started with a strawberry ‘sorbet’ which was delicious & refreshing, thanks to some amazing strawberries I could smell as soon as I walked in the door. To me it wasn’t a sorbet, more of a slushie, as the machine doesn’t freeze, it was ice, sugar & fruit crushed, but all the same it was nice & smooth straight from the machine, I’d enhance it with some alcohol during the summer!
We had a great raw beetroot salad next, easy to put all the ingredients in & chop! Ready in minutes.
Next was the one I was waiting for, a risotto. She noisily grated the Parmesan to begin with. Put everything in the machine in a couple stages, it chops & cooks & 20 minutes later, risotto, yes cooked nicely. Seemed simple & no stir. Perfect for the ‘non cook’ who said she’d have more confidence to invite guests for dinner.
A quick rinse & onto a chocolate custard, which I must say, I’m a secret custard fan & yes it was good, thick, hot, smooth & super fast!
My overall thoughts of our meal that was prepared for us, yes, it was fast, all prepared from scratch with whole foods & was tasty. A fabulous machine for the time poor & those who ‘don’t cook’ as the electronic display includes scales & step by step recipes on memory cards that can be purchased. It’s a pretty impressive machine that has a lot of functions & does a lot, but not for me at this stage. I have a food processor & a mixer that I’m happy with & don’t use to their capacity already. I’m not sure an expensive machine would all of a sudden create an urge to make everything from scratch! But maybe that’s justification for buying such an expensive piece of kitchen equipment!
It doesn’t freeze either, so can’t actually make ice cream – that would be a selling point for me, with a husband who eats it daily! Yes, ‘thermie fans’ before you get on your high horse, it does make the anglaise or custard base for ice cream,which you still need to freeze & churn, or you can blend frozen stuff to create a blended cold dessert. I would love it to actually churn & freeze the mix also. Then I’d be sold!