You can really start with what you have….when you get to the point where you want to eat more raw foods or expand your repertoire, than read this post!
Here are your must have items in your raw food kitchen:
FIRST: The Difference Between Blenders, Processors and Juicers
A juicer extracts the fibre from fruits and vegetables and is exceptionally good for creating enzyme-rich beverages that can give an instant energy boost.
A blender, on the other hand, retains the fruit and veggie fibre but emulsifies it into a luxurious puree that can be consumed as a soup, smoothie, dressings and more.
A food processor, is similar to a blender, only it needs little to no water to mix ingredients together and it doesn’t puree as finely as a blender, so it is excellent for making pates, thick sauces and many raw desserts.
Do I need all three?
You will have the most flexibility with all three appliances, but you really don’t need them all to just eat more raw foods. I use my blender most, followed by a food processor, then my juicer. I will teach you how to use all of these in my upcoming Fundamentals class.
If you are just beginning with green smoothies, start with a blender. If you want to go first-class, buy a VitaMix or Blendtec (I recommend Blendtec) but most beginners have a sufficient blender kicking around in their kitchen. Use it until it breaks down (and just chop up your veggies smaller).
Green juicing is an absolute delight on so many levels. It is a great way to add more raw foods to your diet and is especially healing.
Juicers range quite a bit in price but, for most people, a simply fountain juicer (like a Breville juicer – my favourite) will do the trick (if you are just juicing for yourself, there is a small Breville model being sold at Farm Boy for $99 or loads of used ones on sites like www.kijiji.ca or www.usedottawa.com).
If you really get into raw foods, you may want to invest in a higher-end juicer that can make vegan ice cream, nut butters and pates, but that is a blog post for another day!
A food processor is an invaluable tool and, conveniently, it is something that many folks already have in their kitchen.
If you’re adding it new to your kitchen, make sure to buy a Induction Drive Motor as it will really outlast the other models. Brand names I like are Cuisinart and Kitchen Aid. Also ask yourself how many people you are cooking for (usually they come in 7-8 cups and 12-13 cups models).
A sharp chef’s knife will make your kitchen ventures a dream. You’ll wonder how you ever lived without one!
I like Mac knives as they are reasonably priced and are high quality Japanese knives used by some of the best chefs in the world. I like an 8″ chef’s knife (they are not serrated) or a 6″ Santoku knife (try each one to see which suits your hand better).
Also invest in a sharpening stone (much better than the traditional sharpeners as they don’t eat away the blade).
Cutting board – Likely most people have this already but, if not, start out with a wood or bamboo cutting board (a plastic one can cause little bits of plastic to end up in your food).
Vegetable peeler - I recommend a regular, plain-old one, as well as a julienne peeler like this. You can make noodles out of vegetables like zuchinni and squash. Amazing!
Microplane – Many of you know I use a microplane all the time to grate garlic, ginger and more into your lovely creations (it prevents a clump of garlic ending up in your soup). You can find one for really cheap (10 bucks) at places like Loblaws.
With this information, I hope you are ready to get started.
But – before you go – what are your must-have raw food kitchen items? Which blender (or any other item) do you prefer best? Leave your comments and questions below!
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