Convenient in size and price, small kitchen appliances have revitalized food preparation in households across America. Two common appliances, the blender and mixer, have decreased the time needed to prepare food. The steamer has provided a new convenient alternative to cooking healthy dishes. Small kitchen appliances are available to meet every cook's need.
Mostly used to mix drinks, blenders are also conveniently used to chop food. Blenders come in two options, hand-held and countertop. Countertop blenders have containers that can be made from stainless steel, glass or plastic. They have the capacity to hold between five and eight measured cups. Because of their weight, glass containers are considered the most stable. Typical blenders have three to 16 speeds.
Long and thin, hand-held blenders are also known as immersion blenders. These blenders are designed to mix the food directly in the cooking containers. Immersion blenders are mostly used to mix smoothies and milkshakes.
Available with different options, food steamers are a convenient way to prepare healthy meals. Bamboo steamers are most beneficial in steaming vegetables and rice. The most popular type of food cooked in a bamboo steamers is Asian food. Steamers can cook food in three ways. They are used in the microwave, on the stovetop and as a stand-alone electric food steamer. The electric food steamer is the fastest way to steam food.
Useful for cooking both large and small quantities, a stovetop steamer uses a tray inserted into a pot, with water at the bottom. Microwave steamers use a microwavable safe bowl with a steamer insert and lid. Dishwasher safe and easy to clean, they are not used as often as the other types of steamers.
Mixers are divided into hand mixers and stand mixers. Hand mixers are best used for light food preparation such as whipping cream, whipping egg whites or making mashed potatoes. Preparing foods with a thicker densities such as dough, a sturdier stand mixer is recommended.
Unlike the hand mixer, the stand mixer works in two ways. The beaters can spin in opposite directions, against each other or can flow in the same direction. Some mixers have stationary beaters with a revolving bowl. These are light-duty stand mixers.
Depending on the type of food preparation, mixers offers different features. A hand mixer should be comfortable to hold and the stand mixer should not be too heavy to lift into a cabinet. Stand mixers offers attachments such as a bowl, a pair of beaters, dough hooks and whisks. A hand mixers offers up to nine speeds, including a slow start option. Stand mixers offer up to 16 speed options. To reduce the chance of the beaters sliding out of position, having locking power heads is an important feature.
- Photo Credit Microwave image by andrey polichenko from Fotolia.com
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