Having a blender can make your kitchen tasks easier. It’s the kind of multipurpose kitchen appliance designed for the likes of smoothies, milkshakes and purees. But as versatile as a blender is, not everything can be thrown in. Below are the 8 Things You Shouldn’t Put In A Blender.
1) Ice Cubes
You would think that tossing ice cubes in your blender to crush them, say, for making a smoothie, is practically a no-brainer. But frozen-solid objects like ice cubes might end up as an uneven mess of bits and chunks. And the worst-case scenario is, regularly doing so would gradually wear down or dull the blades on the bottom of your blender. This is especially true if you use a standard or cheap blender. Even if you insist on doing it, at least use ice cubes that have already been crushed or start slow. The latter is only applicable if your blender has different speed settings. Of course, if your budget allows, get a high-powered blender such as the Panasonic MX-V310KSL (600W) or Tefal BL-811D.
Anything thick and starchy such as potatoes aren’t exactly ideal to be tossed into the blender. Sure, it might sound like the most convenient and easiest way to make your own mashed potatoes without the need of a potato masher or ricer. But the truth is, making mashed potatoes with a blender would stress the blades and you won’t even get that light and fluffy consistency. Instead, you would end up with a starchy mess of mashed potatoes in a blender. Definitely not the kind you are looking for.
3) Cookie Dough
Making dough, say for your homemade cookies, can be both time- and energy-consuming. If you use a blender as your shortcut for making dough, it’s time to reconsider your action. Doing so can cause the texture to become tough or uneven. Not to mention both the tight space and its typically vertical and slim blender container design aren’t enough to properly distribute the yeast throughout the dough. So, the next time you want an easier way to make dough, use a proper kitchen appliance meant for the particular task. In this case, an electric hand mixer or food processor.
Thinking of making your own nut butter? Using a blender might seem like a logical idea. But the problem is, nuts like walnuts and almonds are too hard and tough for the blades to blend them smoothly and evenly. If that’s not enough, you might end up dulling the blades too. Instead, use a grinder or invest in a powerful blender that can handle nuts such as the Hamilton Beach Professional Quiet Shield Blender or Tefal Ultrablend Boost BL985.
5) Sun-Dried Tomatoes
Unless you have a high-powered blender, using the standard or cheap variety isn’t a good idea for blending sun-dried tomatoes, say for incorporating with other ingredients to make homemade pesto. The reason? The tough and leathery texture would end up with a sticky residue all over the blades and the container. This even makes it difficult for you to clean the blender afterwards. Even if you still want to blend them, at least soak the sun-dried tomatoes in warm water beforehand. Doing so would soften the sun-dried tomatoes and made them easier to blend.
6) Dried Fruits
Just like sun-dried tomatoes, blending dried fruits like figs, apricots and peaches can leave a sticky residue on the blades. This also means you’ll be facing a tough time cleaning the blender later. Blending dried fruits, say for making a smoothie, can result in bits and chunks. Never attempt to blend the whole dried fruit by itself and even if your recipe requires them, soften the dried fruits in warm water overnight or at least for a few hours using the soaking method. Finally, if budget isn’t an issue, consider investing a high-powered blender that can do the job easily.
7) Whole Spices
Whole spices like black pepper, nutmeg and fenugreek aren’t suitable to be used in a blender. For crushing whole spices, you are better off using or investing in a spice grinder. There are few of them you can consider, namely the Cuisinart Spice and Nut Grinder SG-10HK or KRUPS F20342 Coffee and Spice Grinder.
8) Frozen Fruits
High-powered blenders like Blendtec Total Blender TB621BL and Tefal High Speed Blender Dynamix Cook BL967 may have the capabilities to blend frozen fruits efficiently. But if you are using a standard or cheap blender, blending frozen fruits might wear down the blades and end up with chunky smoothies. Still insist on using them in your blender? At least let the frozen fruits thaw for 10-15 minutes before tossing them into your blender.