Sunday, January 16, 2011

The blender

For several years I have had a jones for a Vitamix blender. Why? They are cool, they are easy to clean, they do a great job... However the birdhouse CFO (aka Madame) has observed quite reasonably that a $600 blender is overkill. However she was resigned to the crappy blenders that have been gracing our kitchen counters and never used them. They were hard to use, heavy, the seals never quite sealed. The cleanup was a pain....
So we were minding our own business in CostCo yesterday (note to self - be more focussed when visiting CostCo). And there we saw the Blendtec blender. Apparently this thing has been advertised all over the internet - but with adblockers, etc. I never saw the commercials. So I was a novice. It looks a bit like the Vitamix. The blade attachment is built in to the "goblet", so no seals to worry about. The goblet is large (1/2 gallon). The blades spin at about mach 0.4 or some such speed. And it is a whole lot cheaper than the Vitamix.

After long engagement with the sales guy, and having tasted many of his concoctions (more interested in the textures than the tastes I have to admit), it seemed that this was the way to go. After consultation with the CFO, raising of a wine cork (what passes for a purchase authorization in our house) we bought it - and the 96 oz goblet as well. Working on the theory that we do make some pretty good sized soups.

Brought it home, opened instructions and it said, "To clean put in 1 cup of hot water 2 drops of detergent and pulse for 5 seconds. Rinse and dry". Hell, I can do that - and did.

The first test was making hot chocolate. Madame and I like our hot chocolate made with the Abuelita chocolate. But doing that in a pan is a PITA because it never completely dissolves. So we heated some milk in the cups (in the microwave) and dumped 2 cups of the hot milk + 1 tablet of chocolate into the blender and pressed the soup setting. This blends slowly at first to break up the chunks, and then very fast so the friction heats the ingredients. So 2 cycles (90 seconds each) at the soup setting and the chocolate was beautifully mixed, no residue, piping hot (and of course the cups were hot too having been used to heat the milk initially). Cleanup - see above! It really was that simple. The hot chocolate was at 183 degrees (thanks instant read thermometer) and slightly foamy. Madame pronounced it the best chocolate ever.

We are able to dispose of three other tools (2 blenders - don't ask and a juicer.) So we have a really effective tool, spent less than we might have done, had a nice bottle of purchase authorization together and cleaned some counter space.

Time and money well spent

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