01.Is it worth upgrading to the new Thermomix TM5?
Price $2089 as of 1st November 2014. $1989 till then.
The Thermomix has been around since the 1960s when it first launched in Germany as a food processor. After many years of innovation, it found its way onto the Australia market in 2000. Combining the functions of 10 appliances in one unit, the Thermomix can chop, beat, mix, whip, grind, knead, mince, grate, juice, blend, heat, stir, steam and even weigh food.
To find out if its performance justifies the hefty price tag, CHOICE put the latest version, the TM5, up against its predecessor the TM31 as well as some cheaper competitors in our All-in-one kitchen machine reviews.
More on the Thermomix
Included with the unit is a mixing bowl and lid, simmering basket, stirring attachment, measuring cup, spatula and Varoma (steaming bowl), as well as a recipe book. The heating element is incorporated into the bottom of the mixing bowl rather than inside the main unit, and the lid has provisions for spills should a mixture boil over while cooking.
It has a magnetic motor, said to increase the longevity of the product as it has no moving parts or belts to wear out over time. Its handy scale increases in increments of 5g and at any time you can reset to zero to weigh newly-added ingredients. The unit will not operate until the lid is locked into position, and if it hasn't been used for 15 minutes it automatically switches to standby mode, which draws less power.
The Thermomix is only available through in-home demonstrations so before you buy you'll have a chance to familiarise yourself with the unit, and you'll find it’s easy to use. Minimal parts mean it's easy to assemble and disassemble, and cleaning is also a breeze. All parts are dishwasher-safe and the main unit is easy to wipe over. Keep in mind that the plastic parts may stain with some food colours, however bicarbonate soda should remove any stains.
For more information about the Thermomix and its competitors, see our All-in-one kitchen machine reviews.