Tuesday 23 June 2015

Slow Cooking in the Thermomix

Who says you can't make "Slow Cooker" meals in the Thermomix?

I admit, when I went to a demo as a customer I thought I would have to hold onto my slow cooker, but it is long gone (along with all my other appliances). I loved the smell of a slow cooked meal filling my house, so nice in winter. It was also great for me when I was working full time or if I wanted to cook up a big batch of curry. 

Why slow cook your food?

Slow cookers generally cook your food between 80-90C for 6-8 hours. 
You can put everything in the one pot which means less washing up.
The low cooking temperature means that generally speaking your food doesn't burn or stick to the bottom. 

Disadvantages to using a slow cooker

From my experience I always found my slow cooker would leave a lovely crusty 'ring' around the top edge of the liquid which could be tricky to clean off.

I have read that every time you remove the lid of your slow cooker during cooking to check the contents or give it a stir, you should increase the cooking time by 20 minutes to compensate for the large loss of heat escaping from the lid.

Each time you remove the lid you are also losing temperature, and when the temperature drops below 70C you run the risk of harmful bacteria growth.

Meat ideally should be defrosted the night before if you are intending on putting the slow cooker on in the morning before work and letting it cook all day, due to the increased risk of bacteria growth while the meat goes from frozen to 70c.

Cooking all day cost more money than cooking for 1-2 hours! 

Benefits of 'Slow Cooking' with the Thermomix

The accurate temperature control of Thermomix gives you peace of mind when you are cooking at low temperatures.

Meals that you would have cooked in the slow cooker for 6-8 hours can be cooked in anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours.

All your chopping and prep-work can be done for you in the Thermomix, meaning less time and less washing up.

You don't have to worry about stirring, food sticking to the bottom or burning.

You can use your Varoma while you slow cook! You can increase the temperature for the last 20 minutes to Varoma temperature, and then steam additional vegetables, dumplings, potatoes, bread, eggs etc in the Varoma at the same time, giving you more volume to your meal as well as evaporating excess liquid. Great for larger families!

Want some tips? 

I generally slow cook my casserole type meals in the Thermomix for 2 hours on 80c, reverse speed soft. Then if I want to reduce liquid down or steam anything extra as mentioned above, I increase the temperature for a further 20 minutes to varoma temperature. 

Recipes to try

My #1 Favourite: Slow Cooked Beef Chilli

Beef Stroganoff

Lamb Casserole

Beef & Red Wine Stew

Lamb Shanks (yes you read that right!) 

Chicken & Rice Bracarense Style 

Any of your current slow cooker recipes you can use with your Thermomix. If you are unsure how, just ask your consultant.

Please keep in mind, I am not an expert...I am just a regular mum and home cook, who happens to use her Thermomix for just about everything!! These are my opinions and not those of Thermomix in Australia or Vorwerk International. 

Thursday 4 December 2014

Crayfish in the Thermomix Varoma

Yes, you can and yes you SHOULD try cooking your crayfish in the varoma of your Thermomix. We will never cook our crayfish any other way again, perhaps apart from on the BBQ, but never again in a pot on the stove.

I posted about this on my Facebook page around 2 years ago and every time I repost it I get lots of interest so I thought I better blog it to refer people to easily.


2 crayfish tails, size doesn't matter, just as long as they fit
pre-made garlic butter, salt and pepper

Steam for approximately 20 minutes, varoma temp, speed 1 until meat is no longer translucent. Steaming time will depend on the size/weight/thickness of the tails so will need to be adjusted. Just watch for the colour change through the lid.

A few people have queried if you need to remove the meat from the shell before steaming. We don't, we find it comes out quite easily once cooked.

You can make some wonderful sauces to go with your crayfish, the possibilites are endless. We prefer the garlic butter to appreciate the taste of the meat.

Hope you try it!! Wouldn't it be a perfect Aussie Christmas dish?

Wednesday 26 November 2014

Marshmallow play dough

The girls are calling this "Marshmallow play dough"...softer than playdough. I found this idea somewhere on Pinterest and just adapted it for making in the Thermomix


500g cornflour
300g hair conditioner
a few drops of food colouring


Put ingredients in TM bowl
Mix for 2 minutes, interval speed (kneading)
You may need to use the spatula to stir as it kneads 

This smells...A-MAZING!! Add some glitter, mix up the colours, get creative!

Let me know if you try it

Tuesday 28 October 2014

Creamy Garlic Prawn Risotto | Thermomix recipe

I know this certainly isn't the only garlic prawn risotto recipe on the block, but when I went searching for a recipe to try I couldn't find one just right, so I thought I'd make my own up and see how it turned out. 

See my tips below for how to use the The Basic Cookbook's guided recipe on the in-built recipe chip.

Creamy Garlic Prawn Risotto            

by Nat's Thermomixen in the Kitchen


2-3 garlic cloves
handful of flat leaf parsley (leaves only)
40g butter
40g olive oil
2 Tb TM veggie stock concentrate
320g arborio rice
720g water
60g wine
300-400g fresh raw peeled prawns (I prefer tails off, up to you!)
2 Tb creme fraiche
40g parmesan (optional)
juice of 1/2 lemon


If using, grate parmesan on speed 10 for 3 seconds, set aside, rinse bowl

Add garlic & parsley, speed 6 for 3 seconds. Scrape down

Add butter and oil, cook 3 minutes, 120c (varoma if using TM31), speed 1

Insert butterfly whisk

Add rice, cook 1 minute, 120c, reverse, speed 1.5 (put dial in between 1-2 on TM31)

Add wine, cook 2 minutes, 120c, reverse, speed 1.5 

Add water and stock and cook for 13 minutes, 100c, reverse speed 1.5

Add prawns, creme fraiche and lemon juice. Cook for 3 minutes, reverse, speed 1.5

Transfer risotto to Thermoserver, top with parmesan and allow to rest for 10 minutes. 


If using Thermomix Model 5, you can loosely follow the built in recipe for mushroom risotto. Just leave the prawns out entirely until the end of the recipe as they only need 3 minutes. At end of the final 13 minute cooking time press the back button, add the prawns, creme fraiche and lemon juice and then drop the timer down to 3 minutes and cook again.
Best served immediately
Serve with a teaspoon of creme fraiche on top and garnish with additional parsley

This recipe was provided to you by a Thermomix ® customer and has not been tested by Vorwerk Thermomix ® or Thermomix ® in Australia and New Zealand.
Vorwerk Thermomix ® and Thermomix ® in Australia and New Zealand assume no liability, particularly in terms of ingredient quantities used and success of the recipes.
Please observe the safety instructions in the Thermomix ® instruction manual at all times.

Monday 13 October 2014

Feeding large families and groups with a Thermomix

One question I regularly get asked at demonstrations is "I have a large family, how many people would that feed?". I can give my own experience, with a family of 5 and times when we have cooked regularly for 4 adults, 3 children as well as cooking for extras when we entertain, and then the amount of food we can produce for a cooking class to give everyone a serve. Sometimes people still want to hear more...

Much has been written about this by different bloggers, but I wanted to share some of my customers' experiences with you to help you decide, as well as have this reference to pass to some of my demo guests to help them make an informed decision about Thermomix fitting into their family....

So I have interviewed a few customers, and here are their responses.

HAYLEY, family of 9 

My name is Hayley and I am a mummy of 7 beautiful kiddies, ranging from 12 years to 7 months. 
I've had the privilege of borrowing a Thermomix and I am in awe of just how amazing this machine is. I cannot get my head around how QUICK and EASY it is for me to use. Also following recipes, something I don't usually do! I cooked 6 different recipes on Thursday, most of which I had a teething 7 month baby on my hip, who was only happy to be 'attached'. 
I would never have been able to have made the dishes I made with an unsettled baby, if I hadn't have been using the Thermomix. I have had great joy making dough, scrolls, pizza, cinnamon scrolls, salads and risottos too. I've been surprised how far the portions go, with the usual vegetables, or salads made in the Thermomix.

I did wonder if there would be enough making only one risotto and was pleasantly surprised to see that it was enough to feed my entire family. I have to give the Thermomix back and will be counting down until I purchase one myself.

LAURA, uses her Thermomix to cook for crowds 

I have enjoyed using my Thermomix to drastically speed up the process of catering large events of about 100 people.  Although I'm not always able to use the Thermomix to COOK for that many people, the prep time alone that is saved by using the Thermomix makes it a worthwhile investment.  In the time it takes to chop one or two onions by hand, I'm able to chop 2 or 3 kilos in the Thermomix.  Using the Thermomix to make dips, curry pastes and sauces is much more cost effective than buying them commercially, and its ability to effortlessly chop and mix coleslaws, make sorbets and grate cheese, means a lot of food can be served in a short amount of time. The major benefits I've seen by using the Thermomix to assist with catering have been a reduced prep time and greater cost effectiveness.  For a large number of people, the Thermomix sometimes does need to be combined with more traditional cooking methods like stovetop, but the two can work harmoniously together to streamline the catering process, save you money and drastically reduce onion-tears!

AMANDA, family of 5 & cooks for 'family nights'

I’ve had my Thermomix for 2 years in November. I regularly cook for 4-7 people. I never thought the size of the Thermomix was a problem for feeding my family.  I do have 3 young children so most of the meals I cook feed them, me and my husband when using just the jug.  When using the Varoma there is always enough for 8-10 depending on the meal!

I mostly use it to cook main meals which are 4-6 serves.  Mostly meals consisting of a protein in a sauce that can be served with pasta or rice which are kid friendly!

Some dishes I have cooked in it that use a lot of meat are Penne with Meatballs, Meat Loaf, Butter Chicken (I increase to 1kg of chicken), Beef Stroganoff (again I increase to 1kg of beef) – I find most recipes you can increase the meat because there is always a generous amount of sauce. 

I find that when I am making meals for lots of people I tend to make a main meal and then some sides.  I love that with the Thermomix I can make all those things in the one machine. – an example is the Penne with meatballs.  I make the meatballs, then I make the sauce, I make side salad and some dough to make pizza bianca – this stretches the meal or gives you lots of left overs.  Also when I do make the very few things I still make on the stove  - I use it to chop my onions garlic and herbs.  I also use if for sauces or gravies with traditional roasts or BBQs and also for marinades.

I use the oven for baking bread to go with the main meal or to bake lasagne etc.  I rarely use my stove anymore as I use my Tupperware Rice Cooker and Tupperware Pasta Cooker while tandem cooking something in my Thermomix. I also use my Thermoservers as I can keep things warm while moving on to my next part of the meal.

Things I use my Thermomix for, other than evening meals are healthy snacks for school lunch boxes  using up fruit and veggies just about to go (stock, smoothies, fruit muffins), marinades, dough, cake mixes, custard, sauces, boiling eggs and most importantly DIPS!!

I must admit I do not use my Varoma as much as the jug of the Thermomix.  With the things that we cook the volume is ok just with the jug.  The few meals I do cook with the Varoma always serves 8-10 people so I imagine if I was cooking for that many I would use it more.  Personally, I'm not a big fan of steaming meat….fish and veggies yes, but not meat.

I knew a Thermomix would save me time and I would be able to cook much more in a shorter amount of time.  I knew it would save me money cooking much more from scratch and I would cook a larger range of things I normally wouldn’t have attempted (butter, yogurt, bread dough, meringue)

I LOVE MY THERMOMIX!  I think regardless of how large or small your family is you will not regret the purchase.  I do think having a Thermoserver or two for larger families or for entertaining guests is a must!

WENDY, family of 8 

I've had my Thermomix just over a year. I have 6 kids, so cook for 8 most days, sometimes more. I thought it would be big enough, especially as I'd cook pasta etc separately.

Some of the mains we make are (serves 8)Quirky Fried Rice (we have left overs), Butter Chicken, Beef Stroganoff, Lamb Curry, Quiche (finish in oven). I cook veggies for the quirky fried rice, & the bacon, and love the way you can cook the 'fried rice' in the top. I have made pumpkin scones & cooked pumpkin in the Varoma.

I make banana cake, biscuits, other cakes. I am doing FODMAP at the moment which is gluten free, lactose free, no onion, garlic & lots of other things... Thermi makes life so much easier cooking with substitutions.

As a tool, the Thermomix helps me with grating cheese, mincing onion & garlic (when I can have it!) herbs, preparing sauces for bolognaise (I tend to fry it in pan, & prepare sauce in thermi) cake mixes & biscuit mixes. I also use my slow cooker, boil pasta on cook top, cook quiche in oven, garlic bread in oven, baked potatoes in oven and veggies boiled on cook top (when not steamed in the varoma)

For parties it is great, making cakes & biscuits, large quantities of white sauce & bolognaise sauce for lasagne. My 14 yr old even made the marble cake the other day by herself :-)

We thought about it for over a year, but just the convenience & the ease of using it, enabling us to cook with more fresh ingredients and now especially with food intolerances it's wonderful. And the best thing?! My hubby will now cook dinner as it's so easy :-) 

AVA, family of 7 (and sometimes up to 9 or 11!) 

I've had my thermomix for 3 years and it regularly cooks for 7 people but on many occasions it works up to 9 or 11 people.

To be honest when I first saw the Thermomix I was most sceptical about the capacity of bowl. To this day there are still times when I mutter "Huh ! Who'd of thought it!" when I end up with left overs to pack for hubby 's lunch the next day!

The single most used recipe which we use a lot for our bulky meals is the bechamel sauce. I experiment with different cheeses, herbs, mustard, addition of similar creamy substances such as sour cream, cream , etc . I'm a terrible person when it comes to following a recipe! I will do everything but! Steaming my peas and corn in the varoma whilst the sauce is coming together and then turning that into an 'anything goes' bake. Some our common ones : tuna bake, ham and corn, bacon and broccoli, cherry tomatoes and grated zucchini, etc.
Fried rice is another common one in our house with the veggies on the varoma and omelette on top tray cooking. In the Asian cook book there is a 'Drunk Chicken' recipe which I use and then shred the chicken and turn into San Choy Bow.

We do the madras curry which I use around 700 g of cubed meat. Our spaghetti sauce uses 1 kilo of mince and that's the limit for my jug as by the time I mix the 1 kg of steamed mince with the 1 kilo of sauce from the jug , I'm over by about 1 ladle of food and a very grateful German shepherd! This mixture gives me exactly 2 meals for 7 people. Spaghetti the first night and pasta bake the next!

Although I can cook rice in my Thermomix, my rice cooker definitely allows more meat to be cooked in the Thermomix. Cooking lamb shanks or curry in the slow cooker all day let's me have the thermi available for mash and veggies in winter. I have one TM jug and 2 thermoservers, one of which is always filled with yogurt. But it is still manageable for me to cook for 7 or more people with a little pre-planning. I do have "oh damn!" moments though where I've forgotten to chop something up before I occupy the thermie for the next 30 minutes!

Other things I use my Thermomix for are stacks of play dough, but more recently making batches of pizza dough and delivering them to friends for later proofing.
I like fancy foods but with the numbers in our house its just not viable as frequently as I like it so I rely on chutneys and little treats to make the meals seem more special. For example make a jar of Cassundi to keep in fridge and serve on the side of the curry or deprive the dog of that extra ladle of spaghetti and turn into a samosa or a spring roll!
And if you've read aaall the way down here and you'd still like to read some more, here are some brilliant articles which I read prior to deciding on the Thermomix too.


Has that helped you decide? Get in touch with Thermomix in Australia to put you in contact with a consultant in your area.

Note: this post is the opinion of myself and my customers who have contributed. I am an Independent Thermomix consultant in Perth WA, and have written this post to help my prospective customers decide for themselves if the Thermomix is right for their family. I have not been asked or sponsored to write this post and the views are entirely my and my customers' own and not those of Thermomix in Australia or Vorwerk.

Thursday 9 October 2014

Strawberry Fruit Jelly | Thermomix recipe

Home made strawberry jelly! Gosh I was proud of how this turned out  I think I've done just about every strawberry recipe possible now after we went strawberry picking last week. 

I had about 9-10kg of strawberries and I paid $9. I've made jam, coulis, cordial, jelly, raw cheesecake, raw fudge, strawberry 'bread', frozen 4kg in 400g bags for jams, frozen 1kg for fruity berry dream...and probably more things that I've forgotten!!!


250g strawberries, hulled
120g fresh orange juice (approx 1 orange)
125g hot water from the tap
40g raw sugar (optional or to taste)
3 ts gelatine powder (or equivalent agar agar)


Prepare moulds, ramekins or cups by rinsing with water
Blend strawberries and orange juice for 30 seconds, speed 9
Add water, sugar and gelatine
Warm on 50c for 2 minutes, speed 3
Immediately pour into moulds and set in fridge (approx 2 hrs)
Fill TM bowl with warm water to clean

To turn out of moulds, run under a warm tap then turn into a bowl
I used the Tupperware jelly moulds, they work really well as the tops and bottoms come off for easy release

This recipe was provided to you by a Thermomix ® customer and has not been tested by Vorwerk Thermomix ® or Thermomix ® in Australia and New Zealand.
Vorwerk Thermomix ® and Thermomix ® in Australia and New Zealand assume no liability, particularly in terms of ingredient quantities used and success of the recipes.
Please observe the safety instructions in the Thermomix ® instruction manual at all times.

Tuesday 7 October 2014

Nat's Easy Varoma Shepherd's Pie

My Easy Varoma Shepherd's Pie

I'm always looking for ways to cut the cooking time and use my varoma at the same time, so I prefer to cook our Shepherd's Pie with the potatoes steaming ready for mashing at the same time that the meat mixture is cooking.

This is our version that we cook. Its enough for 5 of us and we usually have second serves! It is very adaptable to what ingredients you have and flavours you like. Think of it more as a technique than a recipe as such. Potato quantity is based on TM31, you can fit more in with Thermomix 5.

It is not a 20 minute meal, but all good things come to those who wait! This will take around 1 hr 15 mins. Can be prepared during the day and reheated/cooked at dinner time. Freezes well.


1 onion
1 garlic clove
2 carrots
a few sprigs of fresh herbs such as parsley, rosemary, oregano, or 1 ts dried
30g olive oil
1 tin (400g) tomatoes
100g water
8-10 medium-large potatoes (around 1.3kg)
2 Tb TM veggie stock paste concentrate
30g worcestershire or oyster sauce
1 Tb tomato paste
150g cheese, cut in 2cm pieces
40g butter (optional)
500g steak (partially frozen and 2cm cubes) or pre-minced. You can use more, just see TIPS below
optional: 1 tin of drained and rinsed lentils (this bulks out your meal)


Grate cheese 5 sec speed 6. Set aside, wash and dry bowl
If using steak, mince for 10 sec, speed 6 (best to partially freeze for 20 mins) and set aside
Chop onion, herbs, carrot and garlic for 5 sec, speed 5. Scrape down
Add oil and tomatoes and cook 18 mins, Varoma, speed 2, without MC
(Set varoma dish on top and start dicing potatoes, adding to varoma dish as you go and as the sauce is heating up)
Remove varoma lid and slide under dish and set aside
Put lid on mixing bowl, reset timer for 38 minutes, reverse, speed soft
While blades are turning (without MC and varoma in place) slowly add mince mixture through the opening in the lid, then add all other ingredients (stock, paste, water, sauce)
Put a large sized casserole dish in the oven to heat up
At end of cooking time, transfer meat mixture to casserole dish
If using lentils, mix them into the meat mixture in the casserole dish with a fork
Transfer potatoes from varoma to TM bowl and mash (with optional butter) for 20-30 seconds, speed 6, using spatula through the lid to mix. (no butterfly used)
Pour mashed potato on top of meat mixture and spread evenly
Add grated cheese and cook on 200c for 15-20 mins or until cheese is golden 

Keep in mind if you add more meat/veggies to the meat mixture you may need to increase the water/liquid volume so that it doesn't stick to the bottom due to the longer cooking time and liquid required for steaming the potatoes. 

This recipe was provided to you by a Thermomix ® customer and has not been tested by Vorwerk Thermomix ® or Thermomix ® in Australia and New Zealand.
Vorwerk Thermomix ® and Thermomix ® in Australia and New Zealand assume no liability, particularly in terms of ingredient quantities used and success of the recipes.
Please observe the safety instructions in the Thermomix ® instruction manual at all times.