MikeB3542... or anyone else
I did buy the Kitchenaid immersion blender, model 100 (without the added bells and whistles of the 300).
Well, I "tried" to use it today, and it was a semi-disaster.
I had made minestrone soup, and wanted to puree some of the vegetables, and then return them to the rest of the soup.
I had already put the soup into jars,so I was not going to puree in the soup pot. Since the jars were pretty full, I ladled out some veggies and soup liquid, and put them into a pyrex mixing bowl. I started the blender on level "1" speed, as you(MikeB) had suggested, and the soup splatterd all over. I was somewhat persistant, and felt that there was a lot of splattering, but not a whole lot of vegetables were getting pureed.
What do you think went wrong? My only thought is that the mixing bowl wasn't "tall" enough, even though it was probably not even 1/2 full?
Also, should the bottom of the immersion blender touch the bottom of the vessel, or should I be holding it somewhat above the bottom, not touching? I tried both, and neither seemed to prevent the soup from splattering.
I was really hoping I'd love this thing, but I guess this is not "love at first use."
You've done more than you need to and you tried too hard - that's why you had problems. The point of an immersion blender is so you can blend the soup IN THE POT that you are cooking with, it's meant to simplify the process to create less mess, less dishes to wash. If you were supposed to take soup out of the pot before blending, well then why wouldn't you use a regular counter top blender?
In the future, just puree some of the soup in the cooking vessel before you do anything else. You should place the blender all the way down into the pot and start pureeing. All the veggies will not get pureed as long as you pay attention and watch the texture.
Immersion blenders kind of shoot the liquid out to the sides, right? So think about this: a straight sided cooking pot versus a smaller, curved side mixing bowl. In the straight sided pot when you puree the soup, it would have to climb the vertical walls of the pot to get out. In a smaller, glass, curved side bowl, you're basically creating a ramp for the soup. Evel Knievel would be proud ;-) Turn on that blender and watch it shoot up the sides of the bowl!
Next time, just try pureeing in the soup pot.
Oh my! I think this happens to everyone the first time -- it was certainly mine, in my case making a black bean soup. Well, hoping the mess isn't too bad -- imagine how bad it would have been if you had cranked up to "10"! The head of the blender needs to be submerged before you turn the unit on or you get a mess! HaagenDazs has it exactly right. The head needs to be set in well, too, because the blender tends to pull the surface of the liquid down. Things start out OK, but then go to hell in a hurry.
I would be REALLY careful using the blender in anything enamelled, teflon-coated, or glass. The problem is that a) the head of the blender vibrates and touching the head will gouge and chip as it bounces on the bottom, and b) the blade of the blender will tend to pull it down so even if you are trying your best to hold it off the bottom, it will try to sucker itself to the bottom. Fewer worries with stainless, anodized aluminum, or the plastic beaker that came with the blender.
This is an issue with many/most immersion blenders -- I suppose they could make the guard out of plastic or coat in rubber, but it would wear out quicker than the stainless.
Don't give up -- once you get the hang of it, you will be OK. I still make the occasional mess myself.
Braun's Multiquick has a 1/4" "rim guard" on the bottom of the blender case, made of plastic, so it can't gouge or chip anything. I've also accidentally left it in pots and it hasn't melted, retained odours, etc. (the original directions called for a simple rinse under the tap).
I know I'm in the minority regarding preferring the Braun, but my first one is 24 years old and still works well (we keep it in the trunk for trips).