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But what are food processors FOR?

(26 Posts)
badgermonkey Fri 01-Aug-08 12:28:57

I was idly flicking through the Argos catalogue, marvelling at how the ingenious appliance manufacturers have managed to make the humble blender into a very expensive 'smoothie maker' by adding a tap (how did everyone get stuff out of their blnders before, I wonder?) when I saw the page of food processors and it made me think. Well, for one, I had this vague idea they stopped making them ages ago (they seem such an Eighties thing for some reason), and for two, what are they FOR? What do you do with them that can't be done easier and with a smaller appliance?

OK, chopping veg; well, I use a knife and a chopping board. Can't say I've ever found it onerous and I'm sure cleaning carrot smush off the processor blades is a bigger faff than just using a knife. Blending things: I have a very rarely used blender and a much more-often used stick blender. In fact I would happily ditch the big blender if need be, as the £5 Tesco Value stick blender does everything I want to do with it. I have heard people say you use them to make mayonnaise, but I am never going to make mayonnaise, and if I did I don't think I'd mind a bit of work with a wooden spoon - in fact I prefer it, as pouring stuff into a machine isn't really cooking. Oh, coleslaw-making, maybe, but Tesco Finest is less than a pound and life's too short to shred a cabbage.

I cook from scratch, I've cooked for plenty of people, and I can honestly say I've never missed having a food processor. But surely someone must find it indispensible?

belgo Fri 01-Aug-08 12:30:50

I use the food processor for making fruit milk shakes and beef mince for cottage pie. Also for juicing oranges. I don't use it that often. Never use it to cut vegetables, way too much fuss and bother.

expatinscotland Fri 01-Aug-08 12:33:30

i use it to make shortcrust pastry, mix cakes, chop veg so fine it hides easily in sauces for the girls or is easily chucked in a dip, grate carrots and courgettes for cakes, puree fruits to make sorbets, whizz up humous . . .

i can keep going!

i have arthritis in my right hand.

good for you that you don't find it a faff to puree stuff or chop it done incredibly finely.

we cook from scratch and cook for plenty of folks and find it indispensible.

Mercy Fri 01-Aug-08 12:34:40

Good question!

It's never occurred to me to buy one

Bramshott Fri 01-Aug-08 12:46:36

Cakes, pasta, dough, baby food, hummus, guacamole - the list is endless!

Flier Fri 01-Aug-08 12:49:36

Ithink they usually have a bigger motor than hand held blenders, so chop up finer and better. I have both - well stick blender, jug blender and the food processor too and do use them all, for different things.
also cook from scratch and cooked for plenty of people.........hmm

SheSellsSeashellsByTheSeashore Fri 01-Aug-08 12:53:21

you can grind up fresh coffee beans with mine. yum yum and crush ice to use in drinks/slush puppies through the summer. it also came with a list of cocktails you cam make and special cups that sit straight onto the base so you can make your drinks without causing extra washing up.

can you make food stuffs with them too? grin and i thought it was just a good party tools. mojito any one? i have crushed ice?

Mercy Fri 01-Aug-08 12:54:49

I didn't realise they could be used for dough etc - but then I'm not a dedicated cook.

I've got something similar to this blender/chopper which I use quite often, and a jug blender.

Booboobedoo Fri 01-Aug-08 12:57:44

Making burgers, chicken nuggets, breadcrumbs, plus everything everyone else said.

expatinscotland Fri 01-Aug-08 12:58:36

oooo, yes, they are great for dough and mixing cake.

and pastry!

SheSellsSeashellsByTheSeashore Fri 01-Aug-08 13:01:47

oh butter icing i use mine for that too. i cant do it by hand takes too long to get the butter soft enough <lazy me? never>

Cies Fri 01-Aug-08 13:07:08

My yorkshire pudding mix turns out much better if I do it in the Magimix. Ditto pancake batter.

Plus everything everyone else has said.

But, if you're happy doing it your way, then fine. You don't have to buy one grin.

melpomene Fri 01-Aug-08 13:08:14

I use mine a lot for chopping onions, carrots and celery - the dds don't like big chunks of veg so I need to chop them fine and it would take ages to do by hand. Also use it for making breadcrumbs, shortcrust pastry and pancake batter.

expatinscotland Fri 01-Aug-08 13:08:58

i forgot about breadcrumbs!

yes, i use it to blitz up roast chicken for salads and chicken meatballs.

stirlingmum Fri 01-Aug-08 13:35:56

I have used mine three times this week.
Once for a sponge cake mixture,
Then making meatballs with pork, sage & parmesan.
Then making breadcrumbs for chicken slices.

Will probably use it again today for youngest dd's birthday cake for tomorrow.

I wouldn't want to be without it!

DoubleBluff Fri 01-Aug-08 13:38:46

I only use mine to chop up onions. It is massive and takes up so much room.
It was a wedding gift tho so can't chuck it¬

Botbot Fri 01-Aug-08 13:44:30

I've got one. I think I've used it once, to make hummous. Mind you, I'm not a big cook and dp (who does the cooking) doesn't believe in gadgets. I really should ebay it, you know.

LazyLinePainterJane Fri 01-Aug-08 13:47:34

Nothing! That's what I use mine for. Shall have to car boot it.

castlelough Tue 06-Nov-12 16:31:59

If I was to get a stand cake mixer (Kitchen Aid/Kenwood) and I already have a blender, then do you think it would be worth my while investing in a food processor as well?

frenchfancy Tue 06-Nov-12 19:21:16

I have both a stand mixer and a magimix food processor. I use both regularly for different things.

This week in magimix:
sausage onion mix for pasta

In stand mixer:
dough for homemade bread
pizza dough
cake mix

That is just what I remember from the last 7 days. I slice veg if I'm doing loads - sliced carrots for 12 people for example or a large potato gratin.

lilolilmanchester Tue 06-Nov-12 22:42:04

I love mine. Can't say I use it every day, but when I do use it, it's a godsend. You just rinse - no carrot smush on blades at all!

I wouldn't have missed it if I'd never had one, wouldn't have ever bought one myself (sharing your views at the time! ) - first one was a present from my parents, but I did replace it when it wore out.

I do most of my chopping/slicing/grating for family cooking with a knife, and prefer a hand held for cakes. But am converted to blender rather than hand blender, much smoother and much quicker smoothies/soups. I turn a whole loaf of bread into breadcrumbs in one go. And it takes minutes to make a vat of coleslaw (I much prefer it even to shop-bought - even Tesco Finest - sorry!!! And do you know how much coleslaw you can make for a pound?!! or grate several cucumbers for tsatsiki etc for for 20 - 30 people for crowd entertaining - £1 a tub in tesco, again about the same for a massive bowlful of homemade.

I know I'm not going to change your mind, but I'm a convert!

thenightsky Tue 06-Nov-12 22:47:05

Mostly pastry and scone dough, which is hard and leathery if I make it by hand.

Also cake mix

Grated onion, cheese, etc.

Blending home made soups of any kind.

I use mine at least twice a week.

Thistledew Tue 06-Nov-12 22:51:36

You can't chop veg smooth enough for soup, sauces and marinades by hand. Also pâtés and savoury mousses are also not possible without one (well, you could make a course pâté with a lot of chopping but it would take you about 4 times as long).

multipoodles Wed 07-Nov-12 08:07:28

Cutting my thumb off grin as a newly married bride my shiney sharp wedding present tore through my left thumb whilst in the washing up bowl and left me in A&E needed many stitches. Both are still intact and going strong 23 years later, my thumb and the food processor!

I use it for pastry, cake, breadcrumbs, vegetables, humous, digestive/butter base mix, traybakes, chopping nuts/fruit/chocolate you name it I can chop it.

It saw me through the experimental years of cooking when first married, then through 2 childrens weaning years and the vast amounts of pureed food for freezing and now general stuff, it is quite old and worn now, a bit like myself. It only gets used about once a week now but it used to sit on counter top and was used most days smile

I often look at shiney new models but haven't the heart to part with it!

MrsHoarder Wed 07-Nov-12 08:22:41

I use mine to slice veg thinly: potatoes for the top of fish pie or veg when cooking for more than 2
And to mince and mix up insides for pies
And for blend soups

I sometimes think about using it for doughs but am quite fond of my cheap electric hand whisk.

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