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You know I love gadgets and I love food, right? I had a growing desire for a Thermomix, but being a freelancer with not a huge disposable income, buying one outright wasn’t an option. I went to a demo, mainly to catch up with a dear friend I hadn’t seen for ages, and the demonstrator said they were offering the business start up kit for free (normally costs about $200). So I decided to earn my Thermomix by demonstrating. And another Bec project was born!

So I didn’t have enough going on in my life, did I?

If you don’t know what a Thermomix is, here’s a lady who looks very pleased with herself:

(Or if you prefer your advertising to look like it comes from a high end car manufacturer, complete with operatic sountrack, here’s another clip.)

I’ve had one day of training and been to a couple of meetings, and everyone is so friendly and welcoming. I’m already learning heaps of stuff that is helpful in running all my businesses, not just the Thermomix one (yep, I’m continuing on with graphic design and Everyday Gratitude and massage and…everything else).

Of course the star is the actual machine, right? The lovely Christine delivered my Thermomix on Friday, talked me through it, and we made some delicious vegetable stock paste (this is what they – oops, we! – do with all deliveries, so that you get comfortable with how to use the machine straight away and it doesn’t just sit in a box on your bench).

I’ve been cooking up a storm since then! It is so fun to cook with. You can put it on guided mode, where it steps you through everything you need to do to make the recipe, or you can go completely manual and do whatever you like. As I’m getting used to it, I cooked mostly in guided mode, but I’m starting to remember basic principles and will soon start trying to convert some of our favourite recipes.

It helped that it was mum’s birthday weekend, so lots of opportunities to eat well. So far I’ve made:

Vegetable stock

Poached eggs

This was funny – I came out on Saturday morning and mum said, “I’m making eggs Benedict!” I said, “What, with the Thermomix?” “Uh…no.” So she made the Hollandaise sauce on the stove and I made the poached eggs in the Thermomix. It was like our very own version of the Katering Show.

Berry sorbet

We didn’t actually have enough ice on hand to make a firm sorbet, so this first one was more like a strawberry daiquiri without the alcohol (note to self: make some with alcohol…). I made a second, proper batch after we got home from dinner out on Sunday night and it was sooooo good.

Beef rendang

I, uh, forgot to take a photo of the finished beef rendang (one of my favourite curries). It was so tasty, and filled the house with the delicious smell of all the spices roasting. The meat was really tender too, even though it only cooked for about an hour (normally beef rendang cooks at least four hours). I was a bit cautious with the chilli – next time I would leave more of the seeds in. Oh, I also made the steamed rice in the thermie.

Mushroom risotto

This is one of the recipes we do at demos, so I need to practice it. That will not be a problem. I haven’t cooked risotto much before, as it’s one of mum’s champion dishes so I never wanted to mess with perfection. But even she enjoyed this one!

I had my first thermofail on the second serving though. Having successfully heated up the beef rendang leftovers in the Thermomix, I thought I’d do the same with the risotto and add steamed chicken. Well the chicken worked beautifully, but reheating the rice? Um. No. Even with the blades on reverse, you get a kind of creamy mush. But we ate it anyway with the chicken and…it was actually delicious. But it’s not a mistake I’ll make again!

Pavlova

And for mum’s birthday cake I made a pavlova! I never, ever got such a high, pillowy meringue in my electric mixer. Our stupid oven didn’t do this justice, though (it is so temperamental and unpredictable), so it didn’t have as much of a crust as I usually like. But it was still extremely tasty, and will probably be part of my breakfast tomorrow, which is totally one of the benefits of being an adult.

So I’m sure you’ll hear much more about my Thermomix adventures as I get into the business and learn how to do more and more things with this machine. To keep the spam element of it down, I might just post once a week with stuff I’ve cooked that week. Or I might not.

Do you know anyone with a Thermomix (or do you have one yourself)? Did they go completely nuts about it too?

I think I need to go and get some sorbet.