I have a Thermomix. That sounded like a confession.
I’ve held off talking about it on my blog because the Thermomix appears to be one of those things that has the potential to divide people into groups — people who have them, and people who don’t — and I don’t really want to facilitate that. However, the time has come to do a frank review.
Nine months ago, my friend Liz from Lush Thermosphere turned up at my place with the Thermomix I had saved up for 6 months prior.
What IS a Thermomix?
Just in case you haven’t heard about it, essentially, a Thermomix is a kitchen aid that weighs, chops, kneads, mills, whisks, stirs, mince, cooks & steams. It comprises of a jug with a heating like elelment (a bit like a electric jug), and a cleverly design blade that will cut, stir or mix depending on what speed you set it.
When I first heard about the Thermomix I thought no, not for me. My main hesitations were thus:
- Price: just shy of $2,000 seemed excessive
- Size: with a family of 6 to cook for every night, I thought it would be too small
- Recipes: I didn’t want to have to re-learn to cook everything, giving away all my quick stable recipes
Why I bought one
After seeing Thermomix in action a few times, I began to change my mind. After many conversations with other users, I bought one. A few main reasons led me to this decision:
- Kitchen equipment: I’ve moved many times, so I keep things basic in my kitchen. When my last (cheap) hand beater broke a few years back, I didn’t replace it. So aside from my toaster, electric jug and slow cooker, I didn’t have any other kitchen appliances. Yes, I used to hand whisk my own thickened cream and egg whites. So by purchasing this machine, I didn’t feel like I was wasting other appliances.
- I don’t enjoy cooking so having something (anything!) to help me in the kitchen is welcome.
- Health: As I become more aware of food, I strive to cook more food from scratch and the Thermomix is great for this sort of thing.
What I like
Has the Thermomix lived up to my expectations? In one word: yes. I love that, while I still don’t enjoy cooking, I try more and make things myself that I would have purchased pre-packed. So for example, when making the children’s birthday cakes, in the past I would buy pre-made sponges to decorate. Now, I make my own cakes, like these two recent creations below made with a chocolate cake centre and cream cheese icing.
Other things I love about the Thermomix:
- I come home after picking the kids up from school and can have fresh hot cinnamon scrolls on the bench in 15 mintues or sorbet made from fresh fruit in 2 mintues.
- I make chicken stock (never done that before) and it makes my chicken noodle soup even more yummy. Food made from scratch using whole ingredients tastes better.
- I can set the timer to cook, and walk away and do something else.
- It’s easy to clean and dishwasher safe. Plus I don’t need as many items to cook a meal which means less cleaning up.
- It doesn’t have too many bits. I find it frustrating to have too many attachments for machines because it’s too fiddly.
- I make breadrolls, often.
- I can make risotto!
- It doesn’t take up a lot of room on my bench, and I like how I don’t need to get it in and out of a cupboard; it’s just there waiting for me anytime I need it.
- There are many recipes on the web and I find it easy to convert my regular recipes for the Thermomix.
- IT’S UBER FAST! Hand kneading takes 10 mintues; Thermomix takes 1 minute.
- It is big enough to make meals for my family.
- I use my Thermomix almost every day, and even sometimes up to 10 times a day. I’m only scratching the surface of what this machine can do, so there’s a lot of potential.
- I find myself making more of an effort with food and that makes me happy. For example, on a cold Winter night on the weekend, I’ll say, “Hey, I’ll make custard.”
- It easy enough for my older kids to use.
- One of my favourite things is the weighing function in the jug. It’s quick and fuss free (I rarely have to measure out cups anymore).
What I don’t like
After using the Thermomix for 9 months, these are the things I don’t like:
- While it does brown meat, you don’t get the same colour as if you use a fry pan.
- Setting the timer: This is only a minor picky thing, but to set the timer for longer periods means pressing the buttons multiple times as it goes up in increments.
- When I cook store bought mince (I haven’t tried mincing meat yet) it comes out a little too fine for my taste. I like it a bit more chunky. However, it still tastes fantastic!
- It is big enough for my family. However, when I want to do bulk cooking, I tend to use a combination of the stove and the Thermomix for different elements. The only thing I find it doesn’t cook enough of for my family is rice, so I continue to cook rice in the microwave.
- I’m still learning about the varoma (steaming) baskets (used on top of the Thermomix jug). I know there are many more ways I can use it, but it’s taking me longer to adapt to this aditional way of cooking.
- Cleaning after kneading dough or cooking things like custard is a little more tricky (but not hard).
- It is expensive. For me it’s been worth it, but it’s one of those big purchases you want to be sure about.
Should you buy one?
There’s no denying it’s a fabulous machine, and I think anyone could benefit from a Thermomix in the kitchen. However, I think it depends on what you want to get out of it. Some who like basic food preparation (eg. a piece of meat and salad/veges for dinner) and others who adore the entire process of cooking, perhaps wouldn’t utilise it so much.
If you want efficiency, don’t like cooking (or love cooking), have allergies, like the idea of cooking from scratch with whole foods, there’s huge value in having a Thermomix. Go to a demo, or have one yourself (seriously the best home party you could have: a few friends and the consultant cooks all the food!) to see what it can do, and ask around for other’s experiences.
Is it worth it?
Is it as amazing as the buzz? Well, for me, it’s made a HUGE difference to my cooking and the types of food I cook. I use fresher ingredients; try more; make more. My husband said to me one day in a cheeky patronising voice, “It’s good darling; your cooking HAS improved.” Ha!
So yeah, I love (LOVE) my Thermomix every. single. day.