I am not a cook. Even can openers can be challenging. And boiling water? Forget it!
With all that, I still occasionally fantasize about preparing great meals to share with family and friends. Well, my dreams may have come true. A new product called Thermomix promises to make non-cooks like me into chefs and good cooks into culinary masters.
Nearly 50 years in the making, Thermomix is the culmination of the work of over 120 engineers and food experts. The company is just opening the U.S. market and, as luck would have it, they are starting right here in Thousand Oaks.
For the past 10 years, Arno Koch, Thermomix senior manager of quality assurance, has worked closely with his team perfecting this fifth-generation product. Over 5,000 appliances were dissected and tested countless times to refine the product elements, design and quality.
The result is the most versatile, easy-to-use appliance in the world. Actually, it’s 12 appliances in one that allow you to mix, steam, blend, weigh, stir, grind, whisk, emulsify, simmer, knead, cook and chop!
I had to check it out and signed up for a hands-on demonstration. Arno gave me a two-minute tutorial and I was off and running.
To my amazement, I quickly whipped up a strawberry sorbet, steamed chicken for a cacciatore-like main dish, created tomato sauce topping, minced garlic, grated cheese, and even made the focaccia bread dough to go along with the meal—all from scratch, in a matter of minutes, and with one appliance.
All I really had to do was follow a computer- generated recipe that took me step-by-step through the process. It told me what to do, when to do it, and how much to do it.
I discovered meal preparation doesn’t have to be a trial, regardless of your skill level. With over 170 recipes in the Basic Cookbook, anyone can create main and side dishes, sauces, spreads, dips, drinks, vegetable stock, jams, baby foods, desserts and more.
Many star chefs in restaurants and some seven million households in Europe, Australia and Asia already use Thermomix because of the convenience, versatility, high quality food preparation and perfect results every time. The company’s goal is to help as many Americans as possible discover their inner chefs.
The Thermomix parent company is Vorwerk, a multi-national, $4-billion-dollar-a-year, family-owned conglomerate headquartered in Germany. It began over 130 years ago as a carpet and vacuum cleaner company. Some 50 years ago, someone had the bright idea of combining the technology of a blender and a steam iron. The result: Thermomix.
One of the reasons Vorwerk opened its first Thermomix office here in Thousand Oaks in October of 2015 was to be close to one of its other direct sale businesses—Jafra, the huge, global cosmetics firm.
Thermomix has another office in the San Francisco area and a total of 60 consultants, providing in-home demonstration dinners. Starting in September, the company is expanding to other states.
Kai Schaffner, Thermomix general manager and president, notes, “We do in-home demonstrations for small groups by actually cooking meals with them from scratch in their own kitchens. We want them to use the product before purchasing and get a real, hands-on feel for the benefits.
“Further, we want to discover more about their needs and tastes. This is a tool to be used every day because it has so many uses for so many kinds of food preparation.”
He added, “The kitchen used to be the center of family. Everyone got together there to cook good meals, share conversation, laugh and enjoy. Much of this has been lost to restaurants and pre-packaged foods, but we’re again seeing people becoming more food and health conscious and more family oriented. In this fast-paced, digital life, we can still have easily prepared, home-cooked meals that are truly good for us on so many levels.”
Arno explains, “Thermomix simplifies cooking, while making food taste better. Even with two left hands, Thermomix makes the magic happen almost without effort. Even if you have never cooked in your life, you can be a chef.”
Considering the savings in time and the fact that you can savor foods made from scratch without flavor enhancers and preservatives, the Thermomix’s $1,299 pricetag appears to be an excellent value for such a long-lasting, useful product. The purchase also includes a personal consultant to answer questions, hold cooking classes and provide necessary support.
In-home and online demonstrations can be arranged through the Thermomix customer service department at 888.867.9375.
For more information, visit Thermomix.com.