A few days ago, I promised some more information about juicing, but I had to wait a while for the information. Finally, I have it.Whenever I buy any kind of gadget or a new piece of kitchen equipment, particularly those which are more of a long-term investment, I always make a point of asking a lot of questions of the seller, not only to find out stuff I need to know, but also to see if they know much about what they are selling. If you ever have a problem with something you’ve bought, you need to know there is back-up out there as and when you need it.
And that’s why, three years ago, I bought my Champion juicer from the UK-based, on-line company which I mentioned in a previous blog: www.wholisticresearch.com Over the years, I’ve rung them with various queries, and they are genuinely happy to provide full and accurate answers.
The main purpose of today’s post is to tell you about my juicer – here it is!
OK, it’s not aesthetically-pleasing (just don’t do what I did and order it in what is described as “silver”, as you end up with something which is more what I would call “battleship grey” and does indeed look like it once served on HMS Belfast.
But what it lacks in looks, it more than makes up for in high juice yield, stamina and the demands of everyday use. And according to Anne, co-director of Wholistic Research, it’s about the only juicer that will survive long enough to serve as a hand-me-down. Look, they’re not cheap (£299), so unless you’re going to use it four times a week or more, don’t waste your worktop space, or your hard-earned cash. Unless you find a decent second-hand one – but make sure you clean it to within an inch of its life first!
IF THERE’S ONLY ONE THING YOU EVER TAKE AWAY FROM THIS BLOG, PLEASE MAKE IT INVESTING IN A JUICER. IT WILL QUICKLY AND PERMANENTLY TRANSFORM THE HEALTH OF YOU AND YOUR FAMILY.
It’s just like anything: as a newcomer to juicing, you may initially find it time-consuming as you get into the routine of washing your fruit and veg and then chopping them where necessary to fit down the chute (if you’re buying organic ingredients, there’s no need to peel, with the exception of oranges) But in the end, it will be like anything else you do every day without even batting an eyelid. And the learning curve is more than worth it for all of the health benefits you will start to feel pretty much immediately:
- Improved immune system – you will laugh in the face of cold season
- Unbelievably velvety skin
- The clearest skin you’ve ever had – and people will comment on it
- Bright, clear eyes
- Stronger, whiter teeth and healthier bones – green veg in particular is PACKED with calcium
- Healthier growth of hair and nails
- More energy
- Fewer digestive problems
- Possible weight loss if you have surplus weight to lose
I could go on, but this is more an information post about WHY to choose this juicer over all the others. For all you sweet tooths out there, you’ll be delighted to know that the Champion has what is known as a homogenising attachment included, which in simple terms means you can make ice cream just from frozen fruits. Just freeze your fruit, and then pass it through the machine, and IN SECONDS, an ice cream-like mixture will come out of the chute. Magic! And no added dairy or sugar!
You can also use it to grind your own flour, make nut butters, sauces, pates and sorbets, but this is unknown territory to me as yet.
The main advantages of a Champion – made by Plastaket, USA – are central to the fact that it is what is known as a MASTICATING JUICER, meaning it “chews” the veg in order to release the juices. It’s also widely accepted to be the best on the market for robustness and speed.
Don’t be seduced by the juicers made for the mass market by electrical goods manufacturers who make irons, coffee machines and toasters, as the chances are that they will give a poorer yield of juice, are less robust and are a pain to clean. Plus, the Champion makes mincemeat (not literally, obviously) of even the sturdiest veg in seconds. And although you’re better off with a separate attachment for leafy greens – particularly wheatgrass – the Champion will get far more juice out of kale and spinach than any juicer available on the high street. You’re going to be using a lot of veg and fruit, so it makes sense to wring every last possible drop out of them.
If you can’t afford a Champion, consider the Omega (from £259 at Wholistic Research), which is a single-auger juicer and particularly good at juicing wheatgrass and other ingredients for green juices, although it is slower.
Others argue that twin gear juicers are the best, such as the Green Star (currently reduced from £549 to £499 at Wholistic Research) Clearly, these are even more expensive, but they can also juice wheatgrass. But personally, for that price, I’d be wanting it to do my ironing and bring me a cup of tea in bed every morning.
I will be blogging about the many merits of wheatgrass next time, but a word of caution before you rush out to buy a Champion (even though I think you should if you can possibly afford it). The producers of Champion have either stopped making its wheatgrass attachment, or, at the least, they are not distributing in Europe, because there have been problems with it. I am lucky enough to have one, but Anne, at Wholistic Research, has promised me faithfully that as soon as the new improved model is out, she will tell me, so I can tell all of you. It does seem imminent, but there are no guarantees that it’s definitely happening, so if you don’t want to hedge your bets and end up with a juicer that can’t juice wheatgrass, the Omega is probably your best bet.
But if you just want to dip your toe into the whole juicing experience and save some pennies, a good compromise is the BL-30 Stainless Steel Manual Wheatgrass Juicer, £139, which you attach to the edge of your worktop, from www.wholisticresearch.co.uk This will allow you to juice wheatgrass, as well as other leafy greens. And, as I shall explain in my next post, if you only juice one thing, make it WHEATGRASS.