“I don’t even know what you’d do with it,” said the friend that offered me a food processor. One of the topics at the lunchroom table that afternoon was gambling, and I’d mentioned that I was waiting to see if I would win a sweepstakes that was giving away stand mixers. She was suprised that I don’t own one yet and that I don’t have a food processor either. Then she remembered that she had one in a box on her give-away shelf that she would be glad to let me have.
So, I had to do some research to see if I would really want a gadget that would take up space in my kitchen. What would I do with a food processor that I couldn’t do with a chef’s knife and/or a blender?
Google helped me come up with this list: potato latkes, yucca pizza dough, carrot salad, hummus, pesto, curry paste, date truffles, tzatziki, tomato sauce, and shaved brussels sprouts.
I was convinced enough to accept her offer.
I already had chickpeas, garlic, and olive oil, so hummus wouldn’t be a problem. Potatoes and onions for latkes? check! The shaved Brussels sprouts with cranberries recipe was tempting enough for me scribble “Brussels sprouts” down on my list of things to look for at the South Philly “Italian” market that weekend.
Saturday. After I’d taken the produce out of all the little bags from the market and put them away, I decided to take a look at the food processor. The cardboard pieces and bubble wrap were still wrapped around the pieces. But when I had taken everything out of the box, there was no metal blade. Perhaps they’d come up with a way for the plastic disc to to the work? No. So I re-wrapped the pieces and returned them to the puzzle box.
Thankfully, I had only purchased enough Brussels sprouts to make a test batch. With the sharp blade of my 21-year-old chef knife, making shreds out of the miniature cabbages wasn’t too difficult. I even decided to slice a root of ginger to make my own crystalized ginger for the recipe.
There were recipes for either cold or warm shredded sprouts. Rather than make a sort of coleslaw, I decided to braise the ingredients (in chicken broth) then add butter, salt, and pepper. The next evening I warmed the shredded Brussels sprouts with some pieces of leftover pork. Potato-and-Cheddar-cheese perogies were a satisfactory compliment to our meal.