You finally have a few extra minutes to spend in the kitchen to fix a tasty supper. You open up your cookbook, find the perfect recipe, read the steps. And quickly decide to call in a pizza. With the amount of ingredients needing to be finely chopped, grated, kneaded, and sliced before you can even get the meal in the oven to cook, you have used up any additional time you may have had. However, with a food processor, you can cut your preparation time down to a minimal amount, enabling you to have even a gourmet meal right at home.
An essential and popular kitchen tool
This kitchen appliance is an essential kitchen item. Originally, it began as a machine only top chefs and cooking connoisseurs used. As time progressed though, and people began to realize just how wonderfully simple and efficient food processors were, they became popular. Production increased, prices came down, and now the average kitchen can afford to have one sitting on the cabinet.
These machines take the time out of common kitchen tasks, such as chopping, cutting, slicing, pureeing, kneading, grinding, grating, and shredding. Plus, they take strain off your fingers, wrists, and lower arms, which can be especially helpful for individuals suffering from joint problems and arthritis.
Powerful and effective
While some miniature food processors are hand operated, most run by electricity. Typically, the wattage is around 500-1,200, giving enough power to slice through the toughest foods. The motor is powerful, but it is set inside the base, making it essentially sound proof. The motor spins metal discs or blades around at high speeds.
Usually, food processors have two speed controls of low or high, with some, like the Cuisinart DLC-2014N, having the option of a pulse button. The pulse button allows you to manually control the blades while still producing a high spin rate.
Food processors come in different sizes, depending on what your cooking needs are. There are various bowl sizes, ranging from large, medium, and small. Small, or mini, usually starts about two cups and can go up to five cups. A medium, or compact bowl, holds between five to seven, or even eleven cups. And a large, or full-sized, bowl will hold between seven to a whopping fourteen cups. Some bowls come with markings up the side of the bowls to indicate how much you have processed without having to get a measuring cup out. Some food processor brands even allow you to interchange bowl sizes on the same processor.
It is recommended to get a food processor with at least a compact bowl size, though large is the best. While it costs a little more, the advantages of not having to continually empty a bowl out, as well as being prepared for any sized cooking need you have, outweigh the price. A large bowl also allows you to mix several foods at once. Typically, a food processor with a larger bowl size also has a more powerful motor to be able to keep up. This means faster results and a longer-lasting machine. A small bowl is convenient for quick jobs, such as chopping a half-cup of onion a recipe calls for or grinding spices to add to a homemade apple pie.
A cylinder leading down into the bowl allows for ease-and safety-of putting foods into the processor. Not only do you not have to worry about getting your fingers in the way of the blades, but you also have both your hands free to add food.
Food processors come with various attachments. One helpful attachment which comes with some processors is a chute. This allows you to not have to stop the food processor and dish out the food before you can continue to add more. Instead, the processed food comes out the chute into another bowl, while you can continue to add food to the processor through the cylinder.
The main bonus of food processor attachments are the various blades and discs you can choose from. Many blades are universal, so regardless of what processor you have, they will most likely fit. The blades make the food processor. Depending on what blades you have dictate what you can do with your processor. The most common blade is an s-shaped blade, which comes with the processor when you purchase it. It does the basic cutting jobs. Another common attachment is the dough hook, a plastic attachment which kneads dough. If you frequently make bread, a dough hook is extremely helpful. It cuts kneading time down to just a couple of minutes.
Other handy discs include a French fry blade, making homemade French fries a cinch. There are also attachments which whip eggs, finely grate cheeses and chocolates, and thinly slice vegetables for salads. The pieces which come from the food processor are evenly cut, both in size and thickness. This not only makes for more attractive foods, but it also means the food will cook evenly and consequently, taste better.
Many advantages of a food processor
One great advantage of food processors is making your own baby food. Not only does this save you a significant amount of money from having to buy little jars of baby food every week, but it also provides a more healthier to feed your baby. With a pureeing blade, you can purchase fresh foods and with no effort turn it into perfectly edible, nutritious meals. Even meats can be ground up small enough for a small child to safely eat. Foods such as apples, peaches, bananas, squash, carrots, and sweet potatoes are highly recommended as a baby's first solids. A food processor has no problem pureeing these. Plus, you can make up a large batch at a time and freeze the extras in ice cubes, saving you time in the future.
Food processor advantages also include helping you control your weight-or to even lose weight. While obviously running a food processor is not going to help you burn calories, the benefits come in eating healthy meals you can prepare yourself at home. Fast-food restaurants are giant calorie traps. Rather than wasting money on foods which only put you back on your weight loss goals, use your food processor to help you quickly throw together a meal at home, where you can control the amount of calories you put into foods, and where you can choose fresh, healthy ingredients. Plus save yourself cash to spend on other necessities.
Finally, wow your family and friends with gourmet meals. Enjoy quality time over a delicious meal rather than slaving away in the kitchen, trying to finely dice ingredients. Or throw together salsas and dips for game days. The advantages of owning your food processor are almost limitless!