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Grinding For Fun And Profit

Recently we bought a mini mixer/chopper for the kitchen, it wasn’t expensive but it promised to do everything we needed which in our case was to primarily blitz garlic and ginger or tomato into a workable pulp. It looked the part but after using it several times it had a few drawbacks. Firstly it had a ridiculous mechanism that had to be locked in place to work. The bowl had to be twisted in, the blade inserted and locked followed by the lid which again had to be twisted into the correct position. That’s three safety devices to ensure you don’t lose your fingers and end up with a useless dibber instead.

I understand where they are coming from but please do we really have to have a lengthy set of things to do before you can operate it? How about just including the device in the lid, a much more simpler method and I’m sure as safe as the other two. Anyway the point is that after only four or five times the safety mechanism broke rendering it useless. Natch.

Let’s go back to my childhood, in the 70’s kitchen devices were made to be lethal, forget safety, it didn’t exist, kitchen appliances felt dangerous, felt professional and felt well built too. We had chippers that required a whack of a fist to drive a spud through a square cutter, electric knives that doubled up as power saws and mandolins without finger guards. Even out of the kitchen some of the gadgets that could be bought included a glass cutter to turn beer bottles into ashtrays, a do it yourself barber kit that comprised of a comb that you loaded with razor blades, I remember one occasion at the local market where a stall had gathered quite a crowd as a chap threw tomatoes into the air only to slice them in half ninja style with one of the most wickedest looking kitchen knives I had ever seen’ I’m sure it was called a Rambo Bread Blade or something like that. He then went on to tackle cutting a shoe in two and slicing a metal tin and a piece of wood. Boy were these things lethal. Fortunately I didn’t have enough pocket money at the time or I might have turned out a knife wielding psycho killer instead that chipped his victims and turned them into novelty ashtrays. Safety? What safety?

The photo above is one of those lethal devices that we still own, and the reason for still owning such a grubby piece of equipment? It works, no faff, no setting up, just plug in and go. Admittedly you can run it without the lid on exposing its lethal blades and the wiring leaves a lot to be desired but after 30 years it still works, chops and does exactly what it should without breaking down. So yesterday I decided to test it out a little and tried a few random things.

Peanuts grind down fine into a nice mushy paste whilst coffee grounds, if you leave the lid off, require a mop and bucket and possibly a stepladder to clean up afterwards. Ice makes a pleasant grinder sound whilst raw meat gives a zombie film sound effect. Bic pens splinter and coat the inside blue, bit difficult to clean after that but on I ventured with frozen peas and plastic soldiers.

See all ready throwing aside safety I was having more fun, so if you are looking for any kitchen appliances and want to fun up your kitchen duties with an electrical version of risk ditch all those fancy safe goods and raid your charity shops and flea markets. Be scared of your microwave with a crack in the door, throw items from a distance into the rotating blade chopper without a lid and see if you can poke your finger in and out of the egg beater whilst it’s rotating, I did and I can hold all three fingers I the air to prove what fun I had.

*Suggestions are for fun only unless you wish to lose limbs, fingers, eyesight or relish a visit to A&E every mealtime. I am a trained grinding professional and all the grinding of unusual items was done with the appropriate safety devices in place, basically I dropped stuff in and ran then cleaned up afterwards. If anyone finds my other fingers pop them in the post and mail them to Found Fingerbobs, Limb-B-Gone, PO Box 736.

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