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Cooking with David

Food Processor and Blender

Copyright © 2006 by David E. Ross

Two tools that I absolutely need in the kitchen are a multi-speed blender and a food processor. They are not interchangeable. I also use a miniature food processor (mini-processor).

I use the blender to pulverize bread crumbs. It's excellent for mixing pancake batter; by drawing a lot of air into the batter, it results in very fluffy pancakes. I use it to finely chop potatoes, carrots, and onions together with eggs when making potato pancakes. I have used it to make mayonnaise and salad dressings.

Not everything blends well. I find that garlic generally remains in large pieces unless I finely mince it first with a sharp knife.

The cutting blade of the food processor is good for coarse chopping. I use it to chop lox for a lox and cream cheese spread and to chop the raw vegetables for gazpacho. The shredding blade is excellent for carrot salad or rösti potatoes. For a large salad, the slicing blade makes quick work of cucumbers.

Some things, however, are best done by hand. Eggplant and zucchini don't seem to slice well except with a sharp knife. Cheese is best shredded with a hand-held box grater.

The mini-processor has only a chopping blade. I use it in place of the blender for small batches. I find that it's easier to remove all the results when I only need a quarter-cup of marinade. It's also quicker to clean than the blender.

For cleaning all three after chopping, I rinse with hot water. Then I fill the container about one-third with hot water and add some liquid dish soap. I only run the machine for about 15-20 seconds. As I pour the soapy water out, I rub it over the outside the container. Rinse and then air dry. Of course, if I have been slicing or shredding, the processor container and its blade go in the dishwasher.

29 October 2006

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