This Christmas I finally received a kitchen appliance that I have hesitated for ten years to buy: a food processor. Many a time have I mused, wistfully, about the things I could do with one. The brilliant pie crusts, the hummus, the home-ground beef, the salsa, O! Excited as I am, I find myself intimidated. Too many recipe possibilities, perhaps? Let's start with an easy one.
Lesson #1: Assume the food processor is on and hungry the moment you take it out of the box. Specifically, assume it is in the "on" position when you plug it in. This way, you will not have to change your pants when it roars to life without you expressly telling it to.
Eager to join the legions of foochebags before me, I pressed the "on" button.
And found terror.
Lesson #2: The food processor is a powerful machine capable of turning chuck roast into hamburger. Your fingers are bone-in meat. Keep that in mind.
Lesson #4: Think through the processing order. If multiple items need to be sliced, grated, or processed, think about which one is best to do first, then second, etc. Things that become ticking time bombs once cut--like potatoes--should be done towards the end. This is not the procedure you want to follow: start by slicing potatoes, remember that potatoes darken in the air, cut thumb while switching from slicing blade to grating blade, grate cheese, ask spouse or grown-up to switch back to the slicing blade and continue slicing the potatoes.
|But what perfect slices! Kristina the Type-A Lunatic approves.|
Lesson #5: Cooking is just deconstructing food, reassembling it and usually adding heat.
Once the dish made it to the oven, all was right with the world. The food processor calmly returned to its new spot on the counter, switch off, motor quiet, cord loosely wrapped around the sleeping giant. The bowl, feed tube and infernal slicing disk went--thank goodness--into the dishwasher. This beast, this powerful force, I will learn to contain. But for the moment, I remain respectful, distant.