We got married fairly recently in our lives, and as those of you who have had a wedding will know, one of the bonuses (other than a lifelong partnership with the love of your life) is getting all kinds of stuff you didn’t have (or necessarily need) before. We now are the proud owners of more things that blend, chop, process, and puree some specific food item than we realistically need. However, most of them are great, and I figured you could benefit from some recommendations. Here’s some keepers:
Standard blender: The regular old stand-up blender on your counter is in my opinion one of the most useful things in your kitchen if you’re a semi-serious cook. Sure, there are other things that do certain tasks better or with less cleanup, but this is one you should keep around. I like ones with a glass jar, and if it’s an irregular shape like a square it keeps the stuff inside from just spinning around in a vortex. Some brands have used the same sizes on their blenders for years, so you can mix and match the motors and jars if you’re like me and get things like this from thrift stores and such.
Food processor: These can’t get things as smooth as a regular blender, but that gives them the ability to give some texture when you want it, like with hummus or salsa. The wide bottom makes it easier to manage the contents than the skinny blender jar, and the chopping action can be useful for mixing things like pie crust and some doughs. It’s nice to have a smaller sized processor as well, whether it’s an inset for a larger machine (preferred) or a separate operation.
Immersion/stick blender: These are awesome. Definitely not a complete necessity, so it may be good to experiment with a standard blender until you see how often immersion blending would make your cooking easier. I really love it for smoothening (not a word) sauces and soups; it’s way easier to clean than a standard blender and you don’t have to dump pots of hot liquids back and forth. Our stick blender comes with whisk and mini-food processor attachments. Look for one with a detachable blender end made of metal rather than plastic.
Food mill: You don’t see these as often, but they can be really great for specific things like jam or tomato sauce. They mostly come into play if you’re starting with whole vegetables that have skin or seeds you don’t want to deal with. Amazing for applesauce.
Okay, go make all the things in your kitchen smaller or mushier. Enjoy!