A food processor is a great tool to have in the kitchen that sometimes gets overshadowed by stand mixers, which have become iincreasingly visible over the past several years. Food processors might not be quite as glamorous at first glance – though I would argue that this one in particular looks pretty good – but they can handle a tremendous number of functions if you pick out a good one. The Magimix by Robot-Coupe Food Processor is a heavy duty kitchen appliance that will give you a new appreciation for the food processor by making your kitchen prep and your mixing a whole lot easier. The model pictured here is the Magimix 5200XL, which has a high capacity 16-cup bowl that is up to the challenge of even extremely large jobs. In addition to the large main bowl, the mixer includes two smaller size bowls – a 12-cup and a 6-cup – that allow you to handle smaller jobs even more easily. Magimix makes three different sizes of food processor and all come with three bowls, but the sizes of the bowls varies by model and how much counter space you want to give to your mixer.
Besides the bowls and their respective blades, the mixer comes with a variety of other accessories that can come in handy. It has a blender mix attachment that will make velvety-smooth soups, a dough blade that can handle thick bread dough, an egg whisk, several slicing and grating discs and a citrus press for easy juicing.
I put this mixer through its paces by trying out all kinds of recipes, from soups to chopped vegetables to pie crust. Everything worked flawlessly and I noticed that the motor was much quieter than my previous food processor, even when it was handling a large quantity of food at once. It was not quiet when I used it to crush some ice, which I did to test out the intelligent response system that is able to automatically adjust its power and speed to suit what your are mixing or chopping, so large ice that needs to be crushed will get a different chop than a soup that you need to puree.
The dough blade – a plastic blade with a special curve on one side for folding as it turned – did a great job of kneading a large batch of cinnamon raisin bread dough. I didn’t even need to transfer the dough from container to container, since the blade with suitable for both mixing dry ingredients and “punching down” a dough after its first rise (which I simply did in the bowl of the food processor). My favorite attachment, hands down, was the egg whisk. This wide, plastic paddle has many holes in it that are designed to whip and aerate things like eggs and whipped cream. You can beat eggs or whip cream with a regular food processor blade, but this paddle is incredibly efficient and made meringues in a fraction of the time of my stand mixer. A five egg meringue that I eventually used for a pavlova took about a minute to reach stiff peaks with the paddle.
The mixer comes with in instruction booklet that includes many recipes. It does a great job of explaining how every piece of the machine should be used and also supplies dozens of excellent recipes. One of the things that I particularly like about the recipes is that they are scaled to different numbers of servings (i.e. for 2, 4, 6 and/or 8), so you can easily make different size batches of everything from soup to bread to dessert. The only problem I found is that some of the instructions are a bit off on their timing. For instance, it recommends that you beat whipping cream for 10 minutes to make whipped cream, when all you really need is about 60-90 seconds. That said, the few small errors are easily overlooked because the recipe ingredients and flavors are spot-on (for the dozen or so recipes I’ve tried so far).
Overall, this mixer is absolutely fantastic. It has a high price tag (though not unlike a good stand mixer!), but there is a tremendous difference between the performance of this food processor and one from a cheap model that doesn’t have the same range of functions. You’ll find yourself using it for all kinds of things once it is in your kitchen, and you might even find that you use it more than your stand mixer, since it can handle bread and cookie doughs just as easily. It’s a lot of fun to use and it’s very easy, as well. You can switch back and forth between bowls to avoid having to do any cleanup while you’re mid-recipe, but all the parts are dishwasher safe so cleanup is a breeze when you’re done.