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Useful for a number of chores in the kitchen--lousy warranty
on December 26, 2003
Update: Well, that didn't last long. The bowl broke at the handle (this is THIN plastic) and it's right back of where the shaft interlocks into the top for safety. So essentially, the unit is useless until I get a replacement bowl. I wrote to the manufacturer. We'll see how they respond to the three year warranty (and this is only after really five months of use, and not heavy use at that.) The "warranty" you have to send the bowl in at your expense AND return (that's not cheap) so buying a new one with free shipping is exactly the same cost as shipping it to Cuisinart. But...you don't have to wait. I deducted some stars from this review as a six month lifespan on a workbowl with a useless warranty is not very good.
While I usually chop on a plastic cutting board with a big chef's knife, the Cuisinart makes several tasks a lot easier. Chopping cooked or raw meat is one. If you are making hash from leftover corned beef, a short burst in this food processor is the easiest way to go. For mixing certain pastry doughs (pie or pate brisee) this is also a very good item to have, although you have to be careful to go slowly and not over-process.
The one thing the Cuisinart does is heat up the dough if you whirl it around too much, so you have to be careful. And if you put too heavy a bread dough in, using the plastic bread blade, you can heat the shaft up enough to jam the blade onto the central post and that's a big nuisance. However, with these cautions, the Cuisinart is hands-down my favorite food processor and for shredding, slicing thinly or chopping, pretty much the best kitchen appliance for the job.
In particular, I like to make hummus and various vegetable soups like pea soup (from fresh peas.) These need to be blended, but I prefer the texture from the food processor over the stick blender on occasion. For example, if you are pureeing peas, and want to sieve them to remove the remnants of the skins, the food processor works well. Or if you want a less liquid consistency, the food processor has its advantages.
They redesigned the Cuisinart over the original to have a wider feed tube. The blade plates are detachable from the stem (that's different from the original from long ago as well, helps with storage.) I find the Cuisinart shreds and doesn't mash the shreds or slices. This is a very useful, all-around workhorse in the kitchen, especially for vegetable foods and pastry dough. This is my favorite version of the food processor. It does the job.