Getting the most from your thermo cooker
No doubt about it, thermo cookers make life in the kitchen quicker, easier and much more enjoyable. However, like so many new technologies, without the know-how your thermo cooker may end up being nothing more than a glorified dust catcher. If you aren’t using your thermo cooker at least once every day, you need to rethink your strategy - not only is this a financial waste but a wasted opportunity! So, here are my tips for getting the most from your thermo cooker…
Remember it doesn’t do everything, but it can help with everything
A failure of many users is trying to do everything in the Thermomix, inadvertently making life harder! Yes, it is a truly amazing machine, but sometimes doing things the old-fashioned way is actually quicker (believe it or not!). You don’t need to worry about lining steaming trays with baking paper to steam your scrambled eggs, just get the fry pan out.
Conversely, people massively underrate the thermo cooker’s ability to help with everything, like a second set of hands in the kitchen. Yes, you might be making a traditional slow cooked curry, but how about using the thermo cooker to chop your onions, garlic cloves, chilli and ginger? The thermo cooker will have it done in five seconds flat, saving you a whole lot of tears and time. And if you need to crush spices and nuts, you’ll really love your thermo cooker’s help! Just because you aren’t using it to cook the whole dish, doesn’t mean it can’t make the whole process a lot easier. That mortar and pestle can go straight to the charity shop.
Cook like your grandma… with a fancy new gadget
We’ve left all those ‘old-fashioned’ techniques like preserving and bread making to the experts, but they are actually so easy with a thermo cooker! In the case of jams, chutneys and relishes, the thermo cooker holds the temperature steady and lovingly stirs, while you have a shower / clean the house / enjoy a glass of wine. The messiest and most labour-intensive part of bread making is the kneading, and the thermo cooker will have this done in two minutes flat. Not only will cooking more from scratch save you money, but it also gives you control over what you’re eating (and it’ll probably taste a whole lot better too!). Now you’re thermo cooking don’t be afraid to get back to basics.
Look at your pantry differently; it just got a whole lot bigger
There are so many ingredients you’ll already have in the pantry that can be transformed by your thermo cooker – take a closer look before heading to the supermarket. Got white sugar? In five seconds you can have castor sugar, and in about a minute you’ll have icing sugar. Got almonds? You’ve got almond meal. Got rock salt? There’s your fine salt. A well-stocked pantry is essential for quick and easy home cooking, but you’ll find you don’t need to stock as many different ingredients, as you can easily whip them up on demand.
Get the right recipes, and let the experts make the mistakes
You will no doubt already have your repertoire of family favourite recipes, but you’ll need to start from scratch once you’re thermo cooking. When you’re confident you can begin adapting from the old collection, but while you’re still getting the hang of it, it’s best to use specifically developed thermo cooker recipes and let someone else (like me!) do the trialing and testing. Thermo cooking methods often require less liquid than conventional cooking and operate in backwards steps, and the blades are deceivingly powerful – I once watched my dad make cucumber soup instead of cucumber salad! There’s nothing more disheartening in the kitchen then a disaster dish, so stick to trusted sources when it comes to recipes and build your confidence and skills.
We've got plenty of tried and tested recipes available free on our blog, but the best stuff can be found in our seven thermo cookbooks!