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Just got back from Australia and a number of people were raving about the 'Thermomix". Has anyone got one and what do you think? Expensive fad or the real deal?

I've never heard of it. But the web site has testimonials from Ian Parmenter (of Consuming passions fame) I always had some respect for parmenter. (Bliss!) But maybe he has just has a monster mortgage and has sold out. :) I will do some further research. I love a fad gadget. ^_^

Edit: At ~2 grand it would want to be awesome. (I read this in one of the reviews, I can't get the price off the web site (at least I couldn't find it)) There is a party plan thing apparently. That's a bit worrying. Here's some reviews extremely positive as far as I read but it could a stooge site.

Edited by staringclown

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I've never heard of it. But the web site has testimonials from Ian Parmenter (of Consuming passions fame) I always had some respect for parmenter. (Bliss!) But maybe he has just has a monster mortgage and has sold out. :) I will do some further research. I love a fad gadget. ^_^

Edit: At ~2 grand it would want to be awesome. (I read this in one of the reviews, I can't get the price off the web site (at least I couldn't find it)) There is a party plan thing apparently. That's a bit worrying. Here's some reviews extremely positive as far as I read but it could a stooge site.

Yes I was told A$2k but never fear a Chinese friend here told me last night that the copy version is about to be launched in oz for a fraction of the price!

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I've never heard of it. But the web site has testimonials from Ian Parmenter (of Consuming passions fame) I always had some respect for parmenter. (Bliss!) But maybe he has just has a monster mortgage and has sold out. :) I will do some further research. I love a fad gadget. ^_^

Edit: At ~2 grand it would want to be awesome. (I read this in one of the reviews, I can't get the price off the web site (at least I couldn't find it)) There is a party plan thing apparently. That's a bit worrying. Here's some reviews extremely positive as far as I read but it could a stooge site.

choice basically says that it's awesome but super expensive...

http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/household/kitchen/benchtop-appliances/thermomix-review.aspx

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Just got back from Australia and a number of people were raving about the 'Thermomix". Has anyone got one and what do you think? Expensive fad or the real deal?

Thermomix seems to be a kind of a cult.

It is only available through private distributors, but at $2000 a pop they probably sell a few less than Tupperware.

People who have them seem to work hard at recruiting more people, as they get a discount or rebate off their own purchase that way.

Someone I know bought one last year and so I found out all about it, whether I wanted to or not. And as the designated neighbourhood 'foodie' (that word, ugh) I had to go along to their recruiting event, too.

The actual machine is quite a well designed beast. It is a little like a vitamiser with a heating element, meaning that it can cook and blend at the same time if required.

It is extremely impressive at making sloppy food without supervision - if you like porridge, soups, stews and sauces it might be for you.

It can chop vegetables (raw) to make a fine textured slaw-type product. The raw beetroot version I tasted was pretty good, actually.

It can also make a slurry-like jam in smallish batches without much supervision.

I saw it crush ice to powder, and also grind wheat to flour, something that most food processors can't do.

Sadly I have no call for any of these functions as I can do most of them with the gear I already have, so I kept my $2k in the bank.

But lots and lots of people, particularly those with aspirations to alternative lifestyles or kids with dietary sensitivities, seem to get a thermomix so they can mill their own grain mixes.

The bench footprint is fairly small for a multifunction item - about the same as a breadmaker. And it is easy to clean.

It's interesting to note that the people I know who bought one used it a lot for the first year or so and then tapered off. It didn't seem to change their style of cooking forever, the way that say the microwave seems to have.

Personally I think it was only the high price that kept them using it as long as they did - a kind of need to get their money's worth.

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And as the designated neighbourhood 'foodie' (that word, ugh) I had to go along to their recruiting event, too.

Nelson

ah hah :)

/Nelson

But lots and lots of people, particularly those with aspirations to alternative lifestyles or kids with dietary sensitivities, seem to get a thermomix so they can mill their own grain mixes.

Ahhh now the target market makes sense. Those old hand powered 70's millstones were crap, get yourself a fancy new way of making crap flour.

If they drop the price to normal "kitchen gadget" prices they'd probably make more money I guess.

I am happy to buy gadgets up to a couple hundred bucks on the principle that a few have been good and most are okay ish. 2K is a bit harsh though. That is entering the world of "what I spend on stuff guaranteed to make my life better".

I figure if you have bred once you can probably do it again, train them up to be tough by feeding them anything that would kill a modern kid, how long is it since mortality rates were like half and half or worse? Sheesh parents got sentimental quick :)

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Robotic vacuum cleaner technology is improving, and their prices are becoming more reasonable. Aboout $600 or so, whereas two years ago they were over $2000.

One could get the cat to do the vacuuming and utilise its tail for dusting.

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and utilise its tail for dusting.

Axshuly works better than you think... (given a co-operative cat).

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Axshuly works better than you think... (given a co-operative cat).

Have you ever met a co-operative cat? I haven't.

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Robotic vacuum cleaner technology is improving, and their prices are becoming more reasonable. Aboout $600 or so, whereas two years ago they were over $2000.

One could get the cat to do the vacuuming and utilise its tail for dusting.

Thanks to the cyberdine corporation cats became self aware in 1979. Humanity was doomed at that very moment.

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Thanks to the cyberdine corporation cats became self aware in 1979. Humanity was doomed at that very moment.

beautiful.

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Have you ever met a co-operative cat? I haven't.

Yes.

I share a house with him.

He was a rescue from the RSPCA or similar and is the most unusual cat I've ever met. Very, very large - only a few cm off the Guinness' book of records for length of cat - and noticeably dog-like in character.

Understands several words (including the key word 'icecream') and will respond to several commands, er, suitably worded requests.

Unfortunately he hasn't an ounce of self-preservation so I think he is here with us for a good time, not for a long time.

He has been used as a duster more than once and it works extremely well, but getting the dust off him afterwards can be a little tricky...

post-91-017391100 1298712821_thumb.jpg

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Yes.

I share a house with him.

He was a rescue from the RSPCA or similar and is the most unusual cat I've ever met. Very, very large - only a few cm off the Guinness' book of records for length of cat - and noticeably dog-like in character.

Understands several words (including the key word 'icecream') and will respond to several commands, er, suitably worded requests.

Unfortunately he hasn't an ounce of self-preservation so I think he is here with us for a good time, not for a long time.

He has been used as a duster more than once and it works extremely well, but getting the dust off him afterwards can be a little tricky...

That's a nice looking cat. We used to have a big male and I think I prefer them. We have a little bitch at the moment. Cranky, narky and whiny.

post-106-012702400 1298715048_thumb.jpg

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Rice makers anyone?

I have one of those $20 ones and it is pretty battered now and the rice is often a bit gluggy. Spent the weekend reading reviews but wondered if anyone here had opinions (Tiger got pretty good reviews).

Of course I made rice on the weekend after reading reviews and it was the best rice I have ever made, didn't even do anything different dammit.

I like the rice to be only slightly sticky (like grains will stick to each other enough for chopsticks to not be a stupid idea) and to have a tiny hint of firmness inside the grain. Probably a bit more bite to it than pasta.

Ideally something where I don't need to think or watch it. Otherwise I'd just do it in a pot.

If there was one that rinsed your rice that would be brilliant. Connect to tap, dump rice and salt in and hit go. That would be awesome.

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Rice makers anyone?

I have one of those $20 ones and it is pretty battered now and the rice is often a bit gluggy. Spent the weekend reading reviews but wondered if anyone here had opinions (Tiger got pretty good reviews).

Of course I made rice on the weekend after reading reviews and it was the best rice I have ever made, didn't even do anything different dammit.

I like the rice to be only slightly sticky (like grains will stick to each other enough for chopsticks to not be a stupid idea) and to have a tiny hint of firmness inside the grain. Probably a bit more bite to it than pasta.

Ideally something where I don't need to think or watch it. Otherwise I'd just do it in a pot.

If there was one that rinsed your rice that would be brilliant. Connect to tap, dump rice and salt in and hit go. That would be awesome.

I don't know of automatic rice cookers--that seems like a bit of overkill for what is, ultimately, a fairly simple process :P. i imagine that the water ratio, quality of rice you are using and how long you let it soak before starting the rice cooker will probably have at least as big an impact on the quality of the rice as the kind of rice cooker. having said that i would guess that the biggest factors would be having a nice non-stick pot, a good seal on the lid to keep the moisture in and a heating element that maintains a good, stable temperature. timer options are good (so you can rinse, soak and have it start automatically an hour or so later), a fast cook mode is also something to look for. A solid, latch on lid (not the glass-top one that just sits on the cooker) preferable with the removable metal disk on the inside of the lid (terrible explanation but if you've seen it you will know what i mean--you can pull it off for washing).

tiger is good, in japan zojirushi is also not bad--dunno if they sell them over here.

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I don't know of automatic rice cookers--that seems like a bit of overkill for what is, ultimately, a fairly simple process :P.

There is nothing that can't be over engineered :)

...not the glass-top one that just sits on the cooker...

Which is what I have at the moment. Looks like maybe a trip to cabramatta or seeing if I can get one online. There was a palce out there that did Tiger.

I find it quicker just to boil rice.

Boiling rice has two main drawbacks I think.

1. You have much greater room for variability depending on attention span

2. Keeping it warm is a lot trickier

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Rice makers anyone?

I have one of those $20 ones and it is pretty battered now and the rice is often a bit gluggy. Spent the weekend reading reviews but wondered if anyone here had opinions (Tiger got pretty good reviews).

Of course I made rice on the weekend after reading reviews and it was the best rice I have ever made, didn't even do anything different dammit.

I like the rice to be only slightly sticky (like grains will stick to each other enough for chopsticks to not be a stupid idea) and to have a tiny hint of firmness inside the grain. Probably a bit more bite to it than pasta.

Ideally something where I don't need to think or watch it. Otherwise I'd just do it in a pot.

If there was one that rinsed your rice that would be brilliant. Connect to tap, dump rice and salt in and hit go. That would be awesome.

Really they encapsulate my feelings about a lot of appliances. They take up valuable bench space. I've got a smallish kitchen so space is at a premium.

I can put them on shelves in the spare bedroom but I end up not bothering even using them. (Like the bread maker I inherited.)

As others have said rice is easy to make without a cooker.

The absorption method

Heavy based cast iron saucepan (Le Cruesset are perfect)

Add as much rice as you need (I usually make two cups cos I eat a lot of rice - it's my staple. :)

Rinse the rice to get rid of some starch

Cover with cold water to knuckle deep over the rice. (I have a two cm knuckle)

Bring to boil and set timer to 6 minutes on your smallest burner. As soon as it boils, stir it around and then put the lid on and leave on low for exactly 16 minutes.

You should then leave it to steam away for a further 20 minutes. (It will stay hot for at least an hour cos it's in cast iron.)

Fluff up rice with a chopstick. Serve.

Which reminds me, is your kitchen finished yet?

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Really they encapsulate my feelings about a lot of appliances. They take up valuable bench space. I've got a smallish kitchen so space is at a premium.

I can put them on shelves in the spare bedroom but I end up not bothering even using them. (Like the bread maker I inherited.)

As others have said rice is easy to make without a cooker.

The absorption method

Heavy based cast iron saucepan (Le Cruesset are perfect)

Add as much rice as you need (I usually make two cups cos I eat a lot of rice - it's my staple. :)

Rinse the rice to get rid of some starch

Cover with cold water to knuckle deep over the rice. (I have a two cm knuckle)

Bring to boil and set timer to 6 minutes on your smallest burner. As soon as it boils, stir it around and then put the lid on and leave on low for exactly 16 minutes.

You should then leave it to steam away for a further 20 minutes. (It will stay hot for at least an hour cos it's in cast iron.)

Fluff up rice with a chopstick. Serve.

Thank you SC, my thoughts exactly.

Only difference is I put a clean tea-towel under the lid while the rice is sitting. Not sure exactly why, something to do with condensation maybe?

All very low stress, and not dependent on more consumerist 'stuff' - just use what you've already got.

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Thank you SC, my thoughts exactly.

Only difference is I put a clean tea-towel under the lid while the rice is sitting. Not sure exactly why, something to do with condensation maybe?

All very low stress, and not dependent on more consumerist 'stuff' - just use what you've already got.

I'll try the tea towel idea. :)

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Really they encapsulate my feelings about a lot of appliances. They take up valuable bench space. I've got a smallish kitchen so space is at a premium.

I use my rice cooker at least once a week. Bench space is no longer an issue for me.

The absorption method

...You should then leave it to steam away for a further 20 minutes. (It will stay hot for at least an hour cos it's in cast iron.)

I guess I should try absorption again. Is the steam away with heat on?

The use of the word "exact" is not a good sign though. The number of times I get phone calls while cooking and have to do some work means the vast majority of my cooking has to be able to take care of itself or sit at any given point close enough to indefinitely.

Which reminds me, is your kitchen finished yet?

Nah. We have a functional kitchen but it isn't finished.

The tap the girlfriend chose is one that sales guy should have said can't be mounted on the bench she chose (at the same time from the same sales guy) so they are chasing up a different version of the tap which does work with the bench we have (in the meantime I grabbed a spare tap and installed it so she has running water, there was a look in her eyes when the plumber said the tap wouldn't work which made me nervous hehehe).

The gas hasn't been connected as no one knew how to install the extractor fan thing (it goes through the floor near the gas lines) so I held that off while the builder and I figured it out. The induction cook top is installed so no real issue there. I think gas is to be hooked up tomorrow.

A few of the cabinet bits didn't fit once the changes for the different components (including the situation mentioned before with the cook tops not fitting), they are coming today with any luck.

So it is taking a bit longer than anyone expected (although I did expect it to take until mid march where some other people claimed it'd be done by mid Feb) but it is all going well in terms of outcome.

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Thank you SC, my thoughts exactly.

Only difference is I put a clean tea-towel under the lid while the rice is sitting. Not sure exactly why, something to do with condensation maybe?

All very low stress, and not dependent on more consumerist 'stuff' - just use what you've already got.

You have to admit a Rice Robot[1] would be awesome. If it had arms and reached out and grabbed a few handfuls of rice it could taste them and decide how much salt and water was required. Then it could rinse it and cook it. All the while grumbling about how you should settle down and maybe get some kids to liven the house up a bit. During the keep warm phase a little foot comes out and starts tapping and asking how much longer you will be. Maybe get one of those old school metal wool scourers and put it one the lids like a grandmas bun.

Awesome.

[1] patent pending, name reserved, don't steal my idea unless you give me one after you make it.

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So I'm thinking of making my own sushi (maki). Has anyone used the Sushezi? I'm going to go the chicken's version and do prawns, crabs, avo -- not raw fish -- I have little kids and they would never eat it raw. I have visited sushi restaurants, but not been thrilled by how long the food sits on the little plates on the train. I'd prefer to make it fresh and have my own sushi night with flavours the kids will eat. Maybe even use some shredded pork.

I have to say that last time when I asked for recommendations for a pizza maker, it was the best thing ever. I have my own fresh dough in the fridge, just pull it out, shape it, put on some sauce and topping and then in 5 minutes fresh pizza!

Oh, and I'm not the best at making rice, but I've found if you boil the rice until it's cooked, put it in a sieve and run hot water through the grains to separate them, they don't stick as much.

Edited by Carly

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So I'm thinking of making my own sushi (maki). Has anyone used the Sushezi? I'm going to go the chicken's version and do prawns, crabs, avo -- not raw fish -- I have little kids and they would never eat it raw. I have visited sushi restaurants, but not been thrilled by how long the food sits on the little plates on the train. I'd prefer to make it fresh and have my own sushi night with flavours the kids will eat. Maybe even use some shredded pork.

I have to say that last time when I asked for recommendations for a pizza maker, it was the best thing ever. I have my own fresh dough in the fridge, just pull it out, shape it, put on some sauce and topping and then in 5 minutes fresh pizza!

Oh, and I'm not the best at making rice, but I've found if you boil the rice until it's cooked, put it in a sieve and run hot water through the grains to separate them, they don't stick as much.

No appliances necessary.

Urch pretty well nailed it here -

http://www.simplesustainable.com/topic/264-the-mandatory-recipe-thread/page__st__40__p__5455__hl__sushi__fromsearch__1#entry5455

Nigiri sushi is also pretty easy to make (as long as you aren't trying to impress any actual Japanese people).

Little kids love raw fish, in my experience - the gross factor pulls them in, but they stay for the flavour. The kids at my son's kindy (going back a few years now) made maki sushi and apparently ate it enthusiastically.

Mind you acquiring the taste for it is a mixed blessing, as he now eats like a horse and it's an expensive habit to maintain, even made at home, when you tend to favour bluefin tuna.

That said, good quality tinned tuna mixed with mayo (in hand rolls) also disappears pretty fast... from the sublime to the ridiculous?!

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No appliances necessary.

Urch pretty well nailed it here -

http://www.simplesus...ch__1#entry5455

Nigiri sushi is also pretty easy to make (as long as you aren't trying to impress any actual Japanese people).

Little kids love raw fish, in my experience - the gross factor pulls them in, but they stay for the flavour. The kids at my son's kindy (going back a few years now) made maki sushi and apparently ate it enthusiastically.

Mind you acquiring the taste for it is a mixed blessing, as he now eats like a horse and it's an expensive habit to maintain, even made at home, when you tend to favour bluefin tuna.

That said, good quality tinned tuna mixed with mayo (in hand rolls) also disappears pretty fast... from the sublime to the ridiculous?!

Unfortunately, I suck at rolling up the damn things. And that bamboo mat is so hard to keep clean. The rolls kind of fall apart on me...practice would make perfect no doubt, but I just can't be bothered and it takes a while. :) I do a better job on vegemite and cheese scroll dough with the rolling up action. Only one of my children eats fish and that's if I fry it in a coating of curried flour to disguise the taste. One child eats crab, the other eats prawns. Go figure.

I also want to try maki without the nori, just roll the outside in sesame seeds and the Sushezi looks like it compresses the rice so it holds together. Nigiri -- I'm not that much of a fan of raw fish myself. Thanks for the link though.

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