Food Writing Prompt : Write about a kitchen gadget you or someone you love bought late at night online or via TV or as a whim at the store. Did the gadget work well or disappointingly?
It might be true that life changed when I bought a Vitamix in the year 2000. It seemed like an enormous investment (and also ridiculous that a contraption made of metal and plastic should cost as much as a room in an apartment in New York City where I lived at the time) , but I was working a short term consulting job where I made $400/day and I figured that the Vitamix (at $399) was my reward for one day’s work.
It came in a big cardboard box emblazoned with a photo of itself filled with whole fruits and vegetables, surrounded by happy and healthy customers. The contraption was covered in mounds of plastic and peanuts, a clear polycarbonate blender jar and what felt like a 46 pound base with knobs and wheels and an electric cord that wrapped around its innards.
I plugged it in and essentially threw in the contents of my fridge’s Crisper drawers, just like the commercials indicate and next thing I knew there was a glowing emerald green purple smoothie concoction in my blender jar which quickly made its way into a glass and then down my gullet.I was awash in a new world of possibility. I was not a cook-didn’t like or really know how to create things in the kitchen, nor did I feel I had “enough time” to dedicate to chopping and sauteeing. Yet I was determined to be as healthy as humanly possible. Here was an enabling mechanism that provided me with all the fruits and vegetables and spirulina I desired mashed into a dizzying array of colorful mush-piles. I wanted to eat endless amounts of greenery and antioxidant rich foliage but my kitchen was about 2 feet by 4 feet in my New York City apartment which made producing anything of culinary note a challenge. In fact the Vitamix took up ½ the counter space, but I didn’t care because it’s magic produced soups, smoothies and items in between for which I didn’t have an official title. That thing turned anything that once had any kind of shape or form into a glob of thick liquid matter that I could pour into any glass or bowl and be delighted by.
I tested the limits as well of what exactly could be ground up in those violent whipping blades and stopped short of putting a block of cement in just to see if I could create a gravel smoothie.
The miracle is, it is 2017 and I still have the SAME Vitamix. I did replace the plastic blender portion once after some mistaken accident befell it. (Manufacturers: please note: I didn’t ever actually put a cement block in it, I promise) I believe Vitamix will replace it for free if it stops working within 5 years of the purchase date and in 2005 , I believe I was just under the wire of my new device and have been using it happily for the past 12 years. It may not look as shiny and delightful as it did when I first opened that Vitamix package and thumbed thru the laminated recipe booklet which basically sat unopened beyond the first few weeks. When I looked at it recently (before I tossed it into the recycle bin) it had ideas and recommendations that I’d never dream of using now since the ingredients sound like they are from a 1980s cookbook of my mom’s. Like mayo and sour cream to make dips and spreads. Now they have branched out into more “Whole Foods” recipes and non-dairy options like a vegan cashew onion dip and a beet pico de gallo. Come on Vitamix! Nice work! Atta boy! Atta girl! Atta-non gender specific salutation!