April 14, 2013

Facts About Juicing

I’d been looking at getting a blender for a while, and I finally got the spare change to get one last month.  I’d been eyeballing a heavy duty one, but settled on getting a medium duty blender/food processor combo and a separate juicer for about $20 less than the cost of the high end blender.  

Not long after I made the purchase, it was Bountiful Baskets day.  If you haven’t heard about them, look them up.  It’s a food co-op, run by volunteers, that provides you with affordable, high quality produce.  It wasn’t long after I got my basket home that I started shoving sliced bits of fruits and vegetables through the feeder and laughing maniacally.  

As with any new experience, there have been a few curveballs.  I wanted to share a few of them with you, just in case you’re in the market to get your own shiny, new juicer.

  • It takes more fruit than you’d expect to get a respectable amount of juice.

  • When you’re done, there will be a foam on the top of your juice.  Depending on the fruit, you may be able to spoon it off.  If not, a permanent coffee filter and a funnel work well to skim that off.

  • Apples are really pulpy.  Check your juicer after you’ve gone through two large apples to clear any debris.  (Though, if you get organic apples, you can use the juice to make your own cider at home.  Mmmm.)

  • Some fruit, like grapes, will make a run for it if you don’t get the plunger back in the feeder soon enough.  This makes for some interesting splatter patterns on the backsplash or ceiling.

  • Experimentation isn’t just for college.  Mix up what you’re throwing at those whirling blades.  Veggies have their place in a juice drink too.  Pick a nice, sweet one like carrots and give it a try.

  • If you have a garden, keep the contents of your pulp reservoir.  It makes for almost instant compost.

  • Can you say homemade popsicles in the summer?

  • I don’t care how good of an idea it seems like at the time, juicing an onion, garlic, or any pepper with more punch than maybe a bell pepper is a baaaad idea.  Wanna know why?  Check the ingredients on a can of mace.  That’s why.

  • Remember, this is 100% pure juice that’s coming out of your juicer, not the watered down, 10% stuff you can buy at the grocery store.  If you’re juicing produce with a high fiber content, be prepared for the consequences.  Drinking a tall glass of prune juice might have some great health benefits, but be prepared to catch up on any reading you might need to from the bathroom.

  • I don’t care who you are, or how well adjusted you might be, when you press the plunger on that first piece of grapefruit and that pinkish viscera hits the inside of the pulp collection bin, you’re gonna feel a little bit like Dexter Morgan.  Depending on who you are, this just might be awesome, and a reason to drink more grapefruit juice.

And there you have it.  Go forth, and juice!

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