It is considered as the ultimate kitchen tool that can do the job of a blender, knife, mixer and chopper (all-in-one). However, many of its owners easily get overwhelmed by its powerful motor, razor sharp blades and unfamiliar attachments and this reliable machine often gets pushed to the back of the cupboard.
Food processors really are wonderful machines if you know how to use them. They can actually save hundreds of hours a year spent dicing, chopping, slicing, mixing, shredding, kneading and pureeing using manual tools.
These simple food processor tips will give you more time to build your recipe collection and make cooking easier and more enjoyable.
The Ideal Food Temperature
Cold foods usually work best in food processors because they are firmer and less likely to disintegrate or deteriorate when processed. Normally, the blades of a food processor are finely honed and they tend to pulverize warm food instead of creating the desired cuts.
Tip: Put meat, cheese, nuts, dried fruit, chocolate and poultry in the freezer for 15 to 30 minutes before chopping or shredding. The same rule applies to food being dropped through the processor’s tube.
How to Ensure Consistency
The motors of a food processor are way stronger than those in stand mixers or blenders. When you want to chop foods directly from the work bowl, be sure to pulse the motor on and off to achieve the desired consistency. Turn the machine on and let it continuously pulverize the food rather than chop ingredients.
Tip: Always empty the bowl prior to adding more food to ensure consistency.
How to Process Hard Food
To grate hard nuts, mince garlic, or cheese, insert the metal blade on the bottom of the work bowl.
Then turn on the machine and drop nuts, cheese chunks or cloves through the food tube.
This will help prevent the food from lodging under the blade and further produces finer results.
Tip for Effective Kneading
For better kneading results, place the dry ingredients into the food processor bowl fitted with dough blades and pulse a couple of times to blend. Pour other ingredients through the tube while the processor is running.
Gradually add flour until a ball forms and then knead for a minute or two by hand before starting the rising process.
Some More Tips
- Chop your vegetables before putting them in your food processor. This will allow for even blending and better consistency.
- Keep your blade firmly secure before adding food. This prevents food from lodging underneath the blade which may interfere with the mechanism.
- Only fill your food processor 3/4 full max. This will prevent leakages and allow for better blending and chopping.
- Consider stopping the machine to scrape the sides of the processor’s bowl with a plastic spatula to create consistent blends.
- Use a funnel to add liquids and flour through the tube to prevent spills and splattering over the machine
Although food processors cannot totally replace stand mixers, kitchen knives and blenders, they still save significant time in food preparation.
They are also easier to clean especially if you use a dishwasher. If you’re hesitant to use your handy kitchen tool, start by applying a few of these food processor tips on simple tasks such as preparing vegetables before moving on to more complicated culinary tasks.