Saturday, September 04, 2010

Welcome to our household ~ My Clever Bimby.

I am in love! I have a new 'gadget' in my household. No, it's not a computer, or handheld device........I do like other things not computer or Apple oriented, although one could argue, I do seem to hover around that prohibitive price point with the things I love to have........I'm fortunate to have a husband who not only indulges me but trusts my judgement - I'm very lucky indeed.

I first heard about the Thermomix (It's called Bimby in some European countries and I think it sounds cute, so I'll call it Bimby or Thermie for short!!), from Laurent the chef who Bunny organized to cook my birthday dinner for me, the night he planned for me where I invited 5 of my closest girlfriends to dinner, and Laurent, a french chef cooked me a divine three course meal, complete with hors d'oevres and a divine cake for dessert. Laurent told me he'd made quite a few things on my menu in the Thermomix, something I'd never heard of before. He told me it was this amazing gadget that cooked, and weighed and minced and diced and kneaded and it was used heavily in his tuck shop every day. At this stage, I didn't realize it would feature in Laurent's book and would also be seen on MasterChef.  I thought nothing more of it, as the price he quoted me was prohibitive!!  Then, a few months later, my girlfriend said she'd seen an article in a newspaper and was this the same gadget. We deduced that it was. Then, Karen was invited to a demonstration of this wunder machine. Karen, couldn't get over how fabulous this machine was. She said the food was sensational. I was very interested after hearing her review. Karen said that her husband was very interested too, so she booked a demo to which I was invited. I remember watching this consultant cook, and fluff her way through the demo, (she was very knowledgable but a bit ditzy and all over the place lol.....) The food she cooked was divine. It was simple, fresh and delicious. I'd never tasted anything like it before. I consider myself a good cook, but have to do lots to make something taste good. This looked so simple and effortless and yet the food was sensational. She made this risotto, and I kept thinking the whole time, that's not going to taste good, as there's not enough flavour in it. It was divine. Just with mushrooms, parmesan cheese, spinach leaves, and a home made vegetable stock. I was stunned at the flavour of it. At that moment, I decided the machine was worth getting just for the stock. She also made these bread rolls, which were kneaded for a few minutes and I was convinced they'd make great squash balls, or garden ornaments!!! She added her own grains, which the Bimby mushed up with no effort at all. The bread was absolutely sensational, I was actually stunned!! They were soft, fluffy and so healthy. She also made a sorbet which is a standard to show people what the Bimby can do. You can use raw sugar, and in seconds have white sugar, then a sec more for castor sugar, and a few more to make icing sugar. No anti caking agents, nothing added, just pure sugar!!  The sorbet has fresh fruit added to it, ice cubes, (the noise this makes is unbelievable, but the Bimby just chomps through them). The final result is just beautiful and creamy.....and you know what's in it, and you've paid barely anything for it. You can use lemons off you tree, ice from the freezer, everyone has sugar, and you add an egg yolk, or pineapple juice and voila you have a dessert made in seconds which hasn't just cost you $7-8 to buy!!!!

So after Karen's demo, I walked away so excited for her as her husband happily handed over the $$$ for it as he was impressed too. This was just before Christmas and since then I've attended another demo and a cooking class held at the local community centre, and it just convinced me further that I wanted this thing.

Last Saturday it arrived. Laurent, delivered it, not only dumping it at my door with the cookbook, but he stayed for two and a half hours and made a sorbet, a chocolate cake, and pizzas and a chicken curry. He left and I was so excited about my machine, but the only thing I had to try in it was cream to whip lol..... It was quick and easy and didn't make the mess that my electric beaters always make. I always have to wear an apron, because it spits white dots everywhere and drives me nuts!!  The next day I made a quick berry sorbet to show my Mum and Dad. In hindsight the sorbet is probably not the best thing that advertises it as listening to it crunch the ice is quite disconcertingly loud. The sorbet was beautiful though, even better than Laurent's!!!

Ready for the jam
Since then, I've only had one day where I've not used it. I can't believe how awesome the machine is. My shoulder is so grateful. No longer when  a recipe asks for me to cream the butter and sugar, will I just take the shortcut and melt it, or worse, hurt my shoulder to do it. I cooked a spaghetti bolognese one night. I was very dubious of this dish. I hate meat that's not been browned first, and has then been let to 'stew' to completion. It gets a very strong taste, which I hate. Even onions not browned and done in the slow cooker, take on a taste which I find overpoweringly offensive.  Well this Spag bol was the best one I'd ever made. I couldn't believe it. I just literally threw everything in, and let it cook at the speeds and times suggested in the cookbook (25 minutes) and voila I had a pasta sauce done!!  I normally cook a spaghetti sauce for 2-3 hours and then I think it's enough!! On Thursday I'd had a migraine, and didn't feel like cooking anything, so I used the dish I'd frozen from the chicken curry that Laurent made on the Saturday. I had tasted it when he'd made it, and decided it needed a few more things, so I added my own fish sauce, more garlic, more chilli and some kaffir lime leaves. I also decided to cook the rice in Bimby too, for the sake of the experiment. I've never had a problem cooking rice, I don't need a rice cooker, so I didn't think I could make it any better in the Bimby, well again I was impressed!! While the curry stayed hot in the thermo serve, my rice cooked in barely any water, and it was delicious!!

So this week, I've made my vegetable stock, some strawberry jam, a pineapple cake from Laurent's cookbook, tomato pasta sauce and I'm very impressed and am so happy to have this item. I'm going to make my own mayonnaise too, so I don't have to buy the stuff that has preservatives galore in it, it's Laurent's aioli recipe. In the summer when the chillies are on, I'll make my own sweet chilli sauce. You don't even have to chop stuff, I stuck the tomatoes in whole for the tomato sauce!! Effortless, chuck it all in, and cook it for 30 minutes and then it was all done, let it cool a bit and put into freezer in containers. So for under $3 I've got pasta sauce for two meals. Cheaper even than home brand stuff and I know what's in it. A quarter of the tomatoes were even from our garden, so I'm rapt.

Ready to make the tomato sauce


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