Top positive review
305 people found this helpful
Works great, not white, could use some refinement in fit & finish for this price.
on April 14, 2009
There are very few reviews of this machine online, probably because it is so new, and there are many reviews of it's main competitor (the OTHER filterless soy milk maker!)
I've made soy milk by hand before, it's tiring and requires your attention at all times to prevent boilovers. This machine make it extremely easy. Soak the beans for a few hours, then put them in the machine with water and press the button..Voila!
What you get:
- Pitcher, this is where it is cooked, it has a non-removable plastic covering that dampens sound and insulates the heat.
- Head unit, this has the blending blades, the heating element and the electronics. It clamps down to the pitcher
- A plastic pitcher, this is where you would pour the soymilk from the cooking pitcher into to filter it
- A sieve/filter with a handle. You put this over your plastic pitcher and then pour the soy milk form the cooking pitcher into it to filer out the "Okara" (soy pulp). Sort of cheap, but it does the job. I suggest you invest in a $5 "gold coffee filter" that is used instead of paper coffee filters in coffee machines, the fine mesh of the coffee filter really gets out the tiny soy particles!
- A cleaning pad and a little brush. For cleaning, though you can just wipe it with a dishcloth.
- A recipe book. This actually looks more like a print out of a web page where people posted their recipes. In fact...I've seen the web page that this was printed from!
- Instructions. Bad English, but it's a simple machine and the instructions are clear enough.
- Power cord. This attaches to the head unit much like a computer power cable.
- A sample of "Laura" Soy Beans. I ordered like 20 lbs of these special Laura beans online...for about the same price that I can get soybeans from the local "Whole Foods" store. I didn't notice any difference at all, though the Laura Beans (I think they all come from one farm) are non GMO (not Genetically Modified Organisms), as I'm sure the Whole Foods bulk beans are, but don't specifically say. They give you enough beans to make two batches of soy milk.
- It makes soymilk as advertised as well as giving options to make other drinks. There are 4 settings. The soymilk is as good as you'll get from any machine.
- Cleanup is fast and easy. Many people complain about the machines that use filters as the filter is hard to clean. This machine is basically a blender with heat. Once the drink is made, you unclip the head unit, run some cool water on it and brush/wipe it down. Pretty easy!
- The pitcher is somewhat insulated for heat and sound. The soymilk is HOT when it comes out, but the pitcher is covered with an insulating plastic covering so it won't burn you if you touch it. Also the sounds is muffled a bit so you can use it at night withough your kids waking up! The sound is less volume than a blender and lower frequency too so it's more of a rumble than a blending sound.
- The head unit clamps to the pitcher, so that helps with sound and probably helps with accidentally knocking the head off the pitcher.
- Handle on the head unit is sturdy and locks in the upward position, or folds down. This is very useful when cleaning. You can hold the head by the handle and run the dirty parts under water. When you put it away, you can just fold it down. I would not try and carry the unit full of water/soymilk by the handle though, use the side pitcher handle!
- It heats the water/beans BEFORE it starts grinding. This is a huge plus because apparently if you grind cold beans it will result in very "beany" tasting soymilk. Making soymilk by hand and grinding with hot water and then filtering is not pleasant...this machine does it for you!
Some cheaper machines may just grind the beans first and then heat the ground beans/water.
- It's filterless. This means you dump the beans and water into the main pitcher. You don't have to load up a little filter basket! This means you can add more beans if you like without being limited by the filter capacity. The cleanup is super easy too, though the step of filtering is done outside the machine when you pour the soy milk in the cooking pitcher though the supplied sieve into the supplied plastic pitcher.
- The fit of the plastic is not exacly great. There were some gaps in some of the pieces, not what I'd expect for the price I paid. This does not affect the performance of the machine AT ALL, but I'm being honest here so I have to point this out.
- Mine was NOT WHITE, it was an off white colour, like the colour that white plastic gets if you set it in the sun for 5 years, that sort of yellowed colour. Sort of like an old APPLE II computer. This is not really a con, but be warned that the picture is not like what you will get, unless the distrubuter would like to comment on this.
- The pitcher on mine says Soya Power, and the head unit says "Soyapower Plus" so obviously they just put the new head units with whatever pitchers they have. Not a serious con, but weird.
- It ships from the distributer IN THE PRODUCT BOX, there is no enclosing shipping box. Mine came pretty banged up, which is the fault of the shipping company BUT it was not protected from such damage. I was happy to see the unit itself was not damaged, but it very well could have been since the box had holes in it and many dents. This is my biggest beef, though other reviews I've read have praised this as a feature as it uses less resources. This is true, and the unit is packed fairly well in the box, but it was a close call that nothing fell out of my damaged box.
Neither Pro nor Con:
- It has no on/off switch. You plug the power cable into the head unit then press one of the cycle buttons to start. When the cycle is done, it beeps until you unplug it! You will want to detach the power cable from the head anyway when you go to clean the head.
OK, so why did I choose this machine over the other HIGHLY RATED other brand "PREMIER" machine? Becuase it is insulated for sound and heat. I have twin babies that go to sleep around 8pm and the only time I have to make the soy milk (one of the kids has milk allergies, hence the need for lots of soymilk!) is after they go to bed. So I when I was making it by hand (to supplement the store bought stuff which was way too sweet or way too bland) I used a blender, but it was loud, plus since I had to filter the bean mash by hand, I didn't like to blend with hot water, for fear of breaking the blender's pitcher and because holding burning hot bean mash is not fun when you're trying to squeeze it. And as I mentioned, if you don't grind the beans in hot water, you get a lot of beany taste. (some mumbo jumbo about enzymes or something...look it up).
I was happy that the sound was a medium volume low rumble instead of the high pitched grinding sound from the blender. Also the plastic surrounding the steel cooking pitcher made it less perilous to touch.
The milk you get is the same taste/feel as any HOME MADE SOY MILK. It is NOT LIKE STORE BOUGHT! Though I'm trying some recipes I found online to make it a bit thicker. I noticed that the soymilk has a slight egg smell, which I like, but my wife hates. It's not intense, sort of like egg custard might smell like. Weird!
All in all, I think this is an excellent product. I wish mine were white instead of 1982 Apple II coloured, and I wish that the plastic trim was a bit better fitting, but these are minor details as the machine makes soymilk like it's supposed to and it is VERY EASY and the cleanup is almost trivial, unlike filter basket machines. I look forward to making other types of "milk" in it!
It would have five stars if it had more refined fit and finish, worthy of the price paid.
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