THE MAGIC BULLET: MAGICAL or TRAGICAL?
We’ve all been there, sitting on our sofas late at night – flipping through channels aimlessly hoping to find something even remotely watchable, and then suddenly finding ourselves drawn into the world of infomercials. Drawn into worlds where exuberant salespeople promise us a product which they insist will leave our lives without meaning unless we purchase it.
The Magic Bullet is no different. Granted, their infomercial is catchier than the common scraps the late-night fare has to offer. A group of people wander in to take the sales pitch, each one different in personality, so rich in character you would think you were watching a lost episode of “Cheers”. Yes folks, this infomercial had a plot – our hosts Mick and Mimi have supposedly thrown the beat-all-of-beat-all barbecues and we are treated to a voyeuristic view of the day after, as their friends who obviously have spent the night wandering into the kitchen one by one to see our two culinary experts whip up magic with their handy little device, aptly named the “Magic Bullet”. All the usual suspects and stereotypes are there – chain smoking beer-guzzling types that normally wouldn’t be interested in the “healthy options” the Magic Bullet could provide, and the protein shake lovers and concerned moms wishing they could find new and inventive ways to make their children eat their veggies. Naturally our hosts oblige to show each and every one of their “friends” how the Magic Bullet could change their lives and give them the answers to the problems they were facing concerning nutrition and food preparation.
The Magic Bullet promises you can make a plethora of unique dishes, easily and quickly. And for those slothy types, things can be made quickly, and with little preparation or clean-up time. Even the most hopeless chefs are targeted, as the Magic Bullet comes with a handy recipe book and can even be used in the microwave.
But does it really do as well as the commercial touts?
Actually, yes. Unlike many products sold in similar fashion; the Magic Bullet does handle very well and is quite a wonderful work-horse in the kitchen. Though nothing more than a new twist on the traditional blender; the Magic Bullet’s modern abilities fits more into the daily food prep we see in today’s kitchens. Smaller compact size makes it easier to use, and the multitude of mixing cups in different sizes means less space in the dishwasher, and custom foods can be prepared, especially helpful in families where not everyone will eat the same foods or has the same tastes. Best of all consumers have a choice of blade systems; one can opt for the traditional cross blade for crushing ice and chopping most foods, and switch to a flat blade more suited for harder foods like Parmesan cheese.
I personally use my own Magic Bullet often, being on a special diet, I found the unit very useful for making small treats for myself such as whipped raspberries with cream, and being able to control portions easily by using the mixing cup system. The unit is especially wonderful in creating smoothies and milkshakes, and having the ability to make more health-conscious side dishes such as natural fresh salsa, sauces and dips which not surprisingly are far tastier than their chemically-modified canned counterparts. Ever make lumpy gravy? Well, one thing the infomercial didn’t mention that I learned one Thanksgiving is that if you take your failed lumpy gravy and mix it in the Magic Bullet and it comes out perfect. That’s right, the Magic Bullet saved my Thanksgiving, and nobody was aware the gravy had been a mess just minutes before.
The Magic Bullet comes with several accessories, some useful – others not. The two mixing cups (one tall, one short) are indispensable and are used most often. The “party cups”, which are basically nothing more than mixing cups equipped with handles and tacky color-coded rings may seem useless, they still work well as extra mixing cups. Lids also come with the unit, allowing you to seal and store foods quickly, and vented lids are a must when microwaving. The only useless item is the full-size blender/juicer attachment. The blender attachment is quite bulky and the juicer screen clogs easily so the process of using the two is quite awkward. If interested in the Magic Bullet for this option alone, it would be best to purchase a decent juicer instead. However, the Magic Bullet is a godsend to smaller kitchens and is a great replacement for standard bulky blenders and still makes it easier to watch portion control and allow you to create new and exciting healthy drinks and dishes.