Soups On! And Smoothies Too - The Missourian: Features People

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Sights and Insights Soups On! And Smoothies Too

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Posted: Wednesday, July 24, 2013 12:00 am | Updated: 9:14 am, Wed Jul 24, 2013.

It certainly isn’t much to look at — standard 1950’s fare, but not retro cool by any stretch of the Corvair. With the container attached, our new Vitamix won’t slide under my top cabinets, so dismantled it’s taking up more space than the food processor that once owned prime real estate on the countertop.

We didn’t even know we wanted this appliance until a snappy salesman with the charm of a sideshow barker delivered his spiel at Costco. We couldn’t live — well, couldn’t live healthily — so he said, without hefting one into our grocery cart. He delivered this info while tossing everything but taffy and coconuts into the super-blender he was demonstrating.

If our daughter Jen hadn’t been at Costco with us, it’s doubtful we ever would have stopped to watch the demonstration. She beckoned us over to the presenter’s stand, and rather than appearing rude, we watched mesmerized as a batch of vegetables and bouillon was transformed into hot soup in five minutes flat. Once we tasted the recipe we were yams in the barker’s hands, par for the course for me.

I once bought a free dog, something Spark’s never let me live down.

Our original reason for going to Costco was to pick up a few things and drop off our granddaughter Avery, whose mom was going to meet us there. That kid-exchange ended up costing us a pretty penny and relegating us to a frenzied weekend of grocery shopping, pursuing the Internet for recipes and blending and smoothing everything from avocado seeds to apple cores.

With a Vitamix you can kiss your compost heap and garbage disposal goodbye. The veggie/fruit waste you usually toss gets flung into the mammoth moocher, a monster that pulverizes and transforms everything but the kitchen sink into soups, drinks, desserts and sauces crawling with antioxidants. No more choking on celery strings, gagging on the green pepper innards, turning your fingers orange peeling carrots, and crying buckets over onion skins. You will, however, still need to bag your grass.

Do you know how much fiber there is in an avocado seed? Me either. I forgot. But the Vitamix barker has that fact in his repertoire. Make arrangements to do a kid exchange at Costco and zip by and see him. He’s quite the expert.

At the end of his presentation, Avery hung around talking with him, and he told her he owns seven Vitamix machines because he’s a chef. I guess being a demonstrator is his day job.

Speaking of jobs, if you do digest everything he tells you, and succumb to the Vitamix’s charms, be prepared for a few pitfalls, and I’m not talking olives here.

All the time the machine will save you making soups and smoothies will be spent grocery shopping for items like unsalted cashews, which serve to thicken tomato soup, dates for natural sweetening, and silky tofu and gingerroot for a ginger carrot soup recipe that prompted phone call No. 4 from Schnucks where my “don’t-mind-going-to-the-store” husband searched the aisles.

That soup better be good.

Kidding aside, I really do love our new purchase. The fruits and veggies I’m ingesting through a straw are making me feel really good. At our house, Popeye and Olive Oil now have nothing on us.

There remains just one other small glitch. Having a Vitamix whirling away in the kitchen makes conversation virtually impossible. The machine is as loud as a jackhammer on concrete, so don’t plan on making any phone calls, or cooking with your significant other, unless you can shout above the din about what’s on for din-din.

/features_people