Monday, November 8, 2010
Most of us have a food processor sitting on a shelf somewhere in our kitchen. Many have been gathering dust for years because we are not quite sure how it is used. There are so many convenient uses for a food processor that once you have realised just how handy they can be, your appliance will take pride of place on your bench top.
Along with the multitude of inserts and parts you will notice the huge booklet that usually comes with one of these kitchen appliances. That is because there are so many individual uses for this not so humble machine.
This one is pretty obvious, you can use a food processor to chop things quickly and into small pieces. However depending on the blade you use you can dice, slice and shred either finely or thickly and you can also julienne. This can apply to all sorts of vegetables and other hard foods like cheese for coleslaws, soups, stews, salads and baking. While it might not be convenient to go to the trouble for a small meal, a food processor can save a lot of time if you are cooking for a crowd or preparing a lot of food.
Bet you didn’t know your processor could grind things. Well it can. Common uses are for things like nuts and seeds, but how about spices or meat or dried fruit. A food processor is usually built for pretty tough treatment and grinding could not be done in your blender or with a wand. A food processor would be the only kitchen appliance, aside from an actual mincer that could grind meat. And grinding spices in a mortar and pestle is time consuming and often messy.
I think we all knew about this one, and frankly, our blender or wand can also puree things. However, the speed and cleanliness would most likely be a lot more impressive when using a food processor to puree your baby food, soups or fruit. If this machine can grind nuts and seeds, imagine how easy it would puree cooked fruits and vegetables.
Depending on your machine, most processors come with juice inserts these days. A simple part that looks like a normal manual juicer is fitted to the spinning tool and voila you have your own automatic juicer that not only juices lemons, oranges and grapefruits in a pinch but also has a strainer that removes pith and seeds from the juice.
By fitting a special whipping insert to your food processor you can also whip cream in record time. Not only is whipping cream in a food processor extremely quiet (if you have a quiet machine of course) but is also a lot less messy that using a bowl. Cream does not go flying off the beaters, it is kept nice and tidy in the container, ready to be spooned out when it’s done.
So keep your food processor on the bench top, because it can be used for so many different kitchen duties.
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