Like everyone else I was excited to receive my TMX. This was going to be amazing. I was going to change the world with this machine and it would somehow warp me into some Nigella Lawson like super mum. Wrong! My machine arrived just as morning sickness with my third pregnancy kicked in so cooking quickly became a dreaded task, even with this amazing super mum creating machine.
As many of my friends know I really struggled to see the benefits of the machine over the next 6 months. Everyone else was loving their machine and I was that crazy person who wasn’t seeing how great it was, who wasn’t referring to it as their fourth child and sleeping with it at night. I tossed up whether it was time to cut my losses and make some money back by selling it. Maybe I could use that money to learn how to be a hypnotist to convince people I was in the same league as Nigella? I decided to set myself a challenge – I was going to cook in my TMX every day for a week. If at the end of the week I still didn’t see the many benefits then I would sell it. I spent the next week whipping up soups, homemade pasta, pesto, curry pastes and a whole lot of custard. At the end of the week I could see how much easier cooking was and it was actually fun and exciting. I really just needed to take time to learn how to use the machine properly. Its a whole new way of cooking and in most cases needs to be learnt through experimenting and lots of it. So “Thermy” stayed. Yes, he got a name. Wow! It must mean I like him!?
I often get messages from people saying they don’t like their new thermo mixer and are really struggling to see the benefits. In most cases the person has only used it once or twice. My biggest tip is experiment – lots! If you are struggling with your machine have a read through these tips:
- You aren’t alone. You aren’t an alien. You aren’t crazy. Remember that when people start screeching “OH MY GOD! YOU DON’T LIKE YOUR THERMOMIX?!?!?! I LOOOOOOOVE MINE”.
- You need to learn how to use the machine. It’s a new way of cooking. I think this is where I struggled the most. I was so used to doing everything the traditional way. I needed to learn the thermo cooker way. This leads me to my next point.
- There will be fails. Not everything will be a success. For some reason I believed everything I cooked was going to be earth shattering amazing and angels would sing and play little harps whilst serving it up. When I had flops it was disheartening and the end of the world. Just know this will happen and that’s ok. Remember, you have had flops the traditional way too!
- Talking about fails – the chopping function is a beast. You can go from chopped salad to juice in 0.0000001 seconds. Your nuts/grains/rice will turn to dust quickly. Cream can become butter in a blink of an eye. Ok not really but you get my point. Follow a recipe to the tee in regards to chopping until you are comfortable with the chopping function and how effective it is or simply practice, practice, practice. Give CADA a whirl (in your Everyday Cookbook). It will show you how effective the tmx is at chopping.
- Experiment, experiment, experiment! I’m the first to say that there are just some things that should be cooked the traditional way and not everything needs to be done in the machine however there is a lot to be said for experimenting. Try everything once.
- Dont give up after a week of having one. That is no time at all. Keep experimenting.
- Start small if needed. Try dips, sorbet and salads to start with and get to know the buttons. Give bread a whirl. Try custard or soup as your first taste to testing out temperatures etc. Some people like to go in head first and straight to all in one steaming meals. Do what works best for you.
- Challenge yourself to cook something new in it once a day or week whatever suits your situation. As I said above, I challenged myself to a week of tmx dinners. This helped me greatly. I got to experiment with the machine and test out a lot of the functions I hadn’t previously.
- Remember you don’t have to use your machine every single day. You have a car, which is a lot more than $2000. I’m sure there are days you don’t use it? Or your big flats creen tv, computer etc.
- I refused to buy any cookbooks to begin with. For me I wasn’t prepared to spend more money on tmx items when I barely liked the machine to begin with. For others, buying cookbooks might be just what you need to start experimenting and seeing the benefits of your machine. Now that I know my machine and have decided to keep it, cookbooks will be on my wishlist. I will gladly accept all cookbook donations. Please send them to GPO BOX….. haha!
- The EDC is your bible. I absolutely love my EDC. The recipes are great for starting out and covers so much. Go through with some post it notes and highlight all the recipes you would like to try. Work your way through them. With each recipe you try your confidence will grow and will expose you to more of its features and benefits. This is what I did in my week of thermo cooking. It helped open my eyes to its real potential.
- The Recipe Community is brilliant! With just under 10,000 recipes, as of June 2014, you will be sure to find something to help! If not, experiment and be sure to upload your recipe if its a success. People will love to see your recipe.
- Google is also your friend. All you have to do is type “Thermomix spaghetti recipe” for example and many recipes will show up. Even a search of “Thermomix banana (or any ingredient)” will provide you with lots of options. There is almost a thermo recipe for everything!
- Forum Thermomix is a great resource with over 10,000 members as of June 2014. Please note: this is not an official Thermomix forum.
- Like FB pages/blogs that post lots of original recipes and online links – it exposes you to more things you can try. There was nothing more frustrating when I was starting out than seeing a great recipe and not being able to cook it because the person got it from a cookbook and it can’t be posted due to copyright. In saying that like as many pages as you can. You will learn so much and people who have these pages are more then happy to help and share their advice.
- Visit my facebook page of you haven’t already for hundreds of ideas, hints and great recipes – food and non food!
- Join “The road to loving my Thermomix Question Group” – ask questions. Lots of them!!! No question is silly. members of this group are owners, consultants, want to be owners, “therminators”, people struggling… there is someone who can help. (Please always go directly to Thermomix Australia for warranty, consultant, cooking classes, purchasing etc inquiries. This group is not to replace them. They are your first point of contact).
- Get your consultant on board and let him/her know how you feel. They are there to help and want to see you using your machine to its full potential. Ask if they can spend some time with you running through the functions in more detail and sharing ideas.
- Attend cooking classes. It is amazing what you learn at these! I recently attended my first and was jotting down lots of notes. I got to try things I normally wouldn’t even think to make and it was nice to meet other consultants and users in my area. I cant not wait for the next one! (Hello Canberra!). At $20 a class it is a great investment into your machine and cooking journey. You can book classes through the Thermomix Australia site.
- Book additional demos. I have had and attended several demos over the years and I learn something new at each one. It also gets me excited again and experimenting. Its great to show your friends how great thermo cookers can be.