Apologies for the gap between posts. I thought I’d be all effortless and cool with my second newborn and keep up with the blog and all other normal life stuff. However, I have found to my disappointment that: a) it’s still bloody hard work the second time around, and b) waking up to find a missing teddy for a toddler, doesn’t prepare you for the mind-altering sleep deprivation of night feeding.
Anyway, a thermal cooker really does make a big difference when life gets busy. I didn’t do as much pre-newborn meal preparation as I should, but it’s still pretty easy to get a Bellini meal together quickly even when jiggling and shushing a baby.
Last week, I finally had a break through with soup in the Bellini. I’d read cautionary tales of burned hands and orange walls when blending soup in a thermal cooker. When I first tried it (despite using a tea towel over the lid), I still managed to coat the splashback with soup. Apparently the ThermoMix is much better in this regard than the cheaper thermal cookers (no surprises there I guess). But if you have a Bellini or SuperChef or Kogan, I’d strongly advise against blending a hot soup on high speed. After some trial and error, here’s my method for blending soup in the Bellini. But use your own discretion and care and check the manual for your machine.
1. Follow the recipe to cook the soup, up the blending part of the recipe. (Don’t overfill the jug. If you are using a TMX or thermal cooker recipe, the quantity should be fine. If using a recipe where the jug is filled to the brim, well, obviously it will end badly if you try and blend it).
2. Remove the lid (not just the measuring cup) and leave the soup to cool for 5-10 minutes.
3. Replace the lid (but leave the measuring cup off). Set the machine to Sp1/5min (no temp).
4. Start the machine. After 30 seconds or so, increase to Sp2. In another 30 seconds, increase to Sp3.
5. Replace the measuring cup, turn it clockwise till it locks. Place a tea towel over the lid (to be on the safe side).
6. Increase to Sp4 for 30 seconds. Then Sp5 for 30 seconds, Sp6 for 30 seconds and finally Sp7 for 30 seconds.
This produced a nice smooth soup that stayed in the jug, not on the walls.