How does a Thermomix Handle Asian Ingredients?

I remember as a kid back in my Templer Flat days in Seremban, one of my neighbours once brought a gigantic stone mill up to their 11th floor unit and set it up on their balcony.

It was so heavy and our block of welfare units was so flimsy I wondered their balcony was going to one day break off under the weight of the mill. I think they used it to make cili boh (chilli paste) but I’m not entirely sure.

Now, one of my main frustrations with Malaysian recipes is the use of a lot of tough, fibrous ingredients that a regular blender or food processor struggles to handle.

Lemongrass

Lemongrass

Galangal

Galangal

Turmeric

Turmeric

Ginger

Ginger

For years during my restaurant days here in Sydney when I blew the motor on yet another blender, I thought back to that stone mill and wished I had one in my kitchen.

I reconfigured my recipes to avoid things like fresh galangal, lemongrass and the like. I used frozen, minced lemongrass and powdered galangal and turmeric. I also tried using bottled ginger puree but it always had a strong taste of preservatives to me so it wasn’t suitable for subtle dishes like Hainanese chicken rice.

Now it’s been about a month since I bought my Thermomix and I’ve been testing it out on different tasks. Just so we’re clear, the direction I’m moving with this is to see how it can help me in my Southeast Asian recipes; I’m not interested in compromising my recipes by making the Thermomix do things it’s not designed to do.

Anyhow, I decided to test it out on these ingredients I’ve always struggled with – lemongrass, turmeric, ginger and galangal – to see how they would turn out. Here’s the video with results –

Clockwise from top right - lemongrass, turmeric, ginger, galangal

Clockwise from top right – lemongrass, turmeric, ginger, galangal

Also noteworthy is the fact that I didn’t need large amounts of these ingredients to make the Thermomix work – those knobs of ginger and galangal in the above pics were pretty much all I put in the bowl, from memory.

My stepmom used to dedicate entire afternoons in order to process her lemongrass. She would have to give her blender a break every two minutes, go away and do other tasks for half an hour and come back and continue, otherwise it would kill the motor. She was so impressed with how the Thermomix performed, she ended up buying one from me.

Bottled, refrigerated, and ready for my recipe experiments

Bottled, refrigerated, and ready for my recipe experiments

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