Food processors are one of the most versatile appliances that you can have in your kitchen. There are so many things that they can be used for that negate the need for other appliances to be taking up room in your kitchen cupboards.
With that being said, there are many people who don’t know what they should use a food processor for or how to get the most out of their food processor.
In this quick guide, we are going to look at some of the most common things that you can use your food processor for to get your money’s worth.
What Is A Food Processor?
First things first, you need to make sure that the appliance you have sitting in your kitchen is an actual food processor and not a different kind of appliance such as a large blender. These pieces of equipment can look similar but have very different ranges of use.
A food processor is an appliance that is used to speed up repetitive tasks in food preparation. Most commonly, they are driven by an electric motor, however, there are some manual food processors on the market.
A food processor has the ability to create different types of food and condiments or prepare ingredients in a variety of ways. The different things that a food processor can do are facilitated by different attachments that come with the appliance or that can be purchased separately.
What Can You Use A Food Processor For?
Now that you know what a food processor is, it is time to look at all the different things that food processors can do.
The range of things your food processor can make will depend on its size and the types of attachments that you have access to. Below are some examples of what your food processor can be used for.
One of the functions of a food processor that is often overlooked is blending. People don’t often use this functionality because they already have a dedicated blender in their kitchen. However, if you don’t have a blender, you can use your food processor.
The basic blade attachment can be used to blend different kinds of foods. Because the blades are so sharp and the capacity of a food processor is often larger than a typical blender, you can blend tougher and larger food items with ease.
There are many kinds of recipes that require breadcrumbs. You can simply purchase breadcrumbs from a store but these often aren’t as nice as real breadcrumbs.
Crumbling up slices of bread by hand can be time-consuming and you might still end up with larger pieces of bread than you want.
Thankfully, you can pop your stale slices of bread into a food processor and it will turn them into breadcrumbs in just a few seconds. Again, the basic blade attachment is perfect for this.
Another laborious task in the kitchen is making dough. Whether you are making bread, cookies, or pizza, making dough can take a lot of time and effort. Thankfully, your food processor can mix your dough together in no time.
For this, you will need to use a plastic or metal blade. This will allow the processor to knead the dough for you. The metal blade will mix and knead the dough faster, although manufacturers tend to recommend using the plastic attachment.
If you are into making the majority of your food from scratch, you might be interested to know that food processors actually make great butter churners.
Putting heavy cream into your food processor and running it on a medium speed will turn it into butter.
All you need for this is enough high-quality, unpasteurized cream to cover the blade attachment. Food processors can churn butter in around 8 minutes which is much faster than doing it manually.
All you need to do is make sure you keep scraping down the sides throughout.
Making Ice Cream
If you have a food processor in your kitchen, there is no need to purchase an ice cream maker. Food processors are capable of making traditional ice cream and “nice cream” made from frozen bananas.
For traditional ice cream, simply mix and freeze the ice cream base in a ziplock bag. When it is frozen, break it into chunks that will fit through the tube at the top of the processor.
All you need to do is pulse the frozen mix with the flavorings of your choice. The same process can be followed using small chunks of frozen banana to make “nice cream”.
Making Nut Butter
It is also possible to make your own nut butter at home using a simple food processor. This is a super simple process that means your family can have healthy nut butter with no extra ingredients.
All you need to do is roast your nut of choice to soften them slightly. Then, add them to your food processor and let it run for 10 to 12 minutes.
This will turn the nuts into a fine meal before it begins to form clumps and finally, transforms into a creamy butter. This kind of nut butter can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 weeks.
Most food processors come with a grating attachment as standard. This can be used for grating almost anything. Cheese is one of the main things that people grate in a food processor. An entire block of cheese can be grated in under a minute.
However, it is also possible to grate vegetables with a food processor. All you have to do is make sure that your vegetables are able to be fed through the tube at the top of the lid. This can make homemade coleslaw mix in just a few minutes.
In addition to making grating one of the easiest tasks in your kitchen, food processors can also cut down on the time you spend chopping and slicing vegetables.
If you want to slice potatoes to make fries or crispy potatoes, the food processor is extremely useful.
Peel your potatoes and cut them in half. Then, feed them one at a time down the tube onto the slicing attachment. Use the plunger on the lid to make sure they are being sliced cleanly. This can take a lot of the time and effort out of this process.
You can also make delicious Purée in a food processor. This can be a great way to make pesto, soups, and sauces.
It can also be used to make homemade baby food for your infant. All you need to do is add your chopped and cooked ingredients to the processor and process them until they are smooth and Puréed.
Common Mistakes When Using Food Processors
There are a few mistakes that people commonly make when they first use food processors. Here are some things to avoid to get the best results.
Don’t Overfill It
Adding too much to the food processor can affect the way the blades work and leave you with less-than-desirable results.
Don’t Underestimate The Power
Even for tasks that take an incredibly long time to perform manually, a food processor can handle them in a few minutes. It is best to use the pulse function to work out how powerful your processor is.
Food processors are the perfect addition to almost any kitchen. They are compact machines that take away the need for cupboards full of appliances that only perform one main task.
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