Hooks for Cooks™

In theory, I like the concept behind the Elite Collection’s nested work bowls.

My 16-cup Die Cast Metal Food Processor features 16 cup, 13 cup and 4.5 cup capacity bowls. In order for the smaller bowls to operate, the largest bowl needs to be in place. The bowls fit snugly together and are easy to align into place so the machine can operate. Additionally, when I’ve made soups and purees in the medium bowl there has been no spillage into the larger bowl thanks to the machine’s trademarked SealTight technology.

For the first three months or so, I dutifully kept my food processor on the counter and always put all of the bowls back into place on the machine once I was done. The metal blade would be stored back in the storage container, because it can’t be kept in the machine with all work bowls in place.

About a month ago, I analyzed my work bowl storage technique. Sometimes I use my machine three times a day—in the morning and in the evening. My bowl of choice is always the largest 16-cup bowl, because I am often cooking in large family-size quantities.

I soon asked myself, “Why am I keeping the small and medium bowls in place if I am not using them and if I then have to retrieve the blade from the storage container?” I wanted to streamline and expedite my daily processing even further. So, to simplify my daily usage, I have stored the 13-cup and 4.5-cup bowls. This has worked beautifully for me. When I need the other bowls, I just take them out of storage and put them in place. My approach is in direct contrast to Cuisinart’s suggestion.

The manual suggests using the bowls from smallest to largest in order to avoid having to clean the bowls between tasks. This is a good idea in theory, but I already arrange my processing in a very specific manner so I don’t have to completely wash the bowl between tasks. For example, I process dry items like streusels and bread crumbs first and then finish up with raw meats or seafood. The bowl and lid then go directly into the dishwasher to be cleaned and sanitized.

When I followed Cuisinart’s suggestions and used the Elite’s bowls from smallest to largest, I found the counters of my small 1920’s bungalow kitchen would become more cluttered, and my dishwasher would fill up too quickly. Additionally, I’d still have to clean the large lid by hand.

Stay Tuned for Part 2: The Small Work Bowl from Many Viewpoints

One Response to “My Cuisinart Elite Collection Review: Part 1”

  1. Norene Gilletz (cookbook author)

    Hi Missy,

    Thanks for your helpful advice. My method of preparing the ingredients for my recipes is like yours, dry ingredients first (e.g., make the crumb mixture for coffee cake, then the batter) I’m anxiously waiting for my Elite Cuisinart to arrive and can’t wait to use it! Your tip about storing the medium and small bowls is practical and logical. Counter-intelligence at its finest!

    Norene Gilletz
    Author, The Food Processor Bible
    http://www.gourmania.com

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