Sunday, June 23, 2013

Introducing Omniblend V - The Wholefood Machine

The journey to here was an interesting one, and a combination of a lot of small things that triggered a big change.

Earlier this year the doctor told me I was in the high risk category for type two diabetes.  I was over 40 and over weight.  I looked back on how I had treated my body over the past 40 years and had nightmares about having to pay for that damage over the next 40 years.  After watching several food and nutrition documentaries such as Food Matters and Forks Over Knives I realized I could reverse everything that I had done and I embarked upon a raw food diet.

When it came to kitchen equipment I was pretty fortunate.  My Mum is a bit of a gadget buyer (as am I!!) and over the years she had passed along to me a juicer, a small dehydrator and a food processor.  I took them out of the cupboard and dusted them off but the one thing I didn't have and really needed was a high powered blender.

I looked at the choices available to me, and there were four contenders.  

The Omniblend V - retailing for $289
The Optimum  9400 - retailing for $471
The Blendtec - retailing for $799
The Vitamix - a whopping $995

There's an extraordinary price point difference there.  For the cost of one Vitamix I could buy 3 of the Omniblend.  I looked at product reviews, I compared the specifications on each machine, and there are slight variances between the high and low end, but not enough to warrant forking out an extra $600.  So I bought the Omniblend V and haven't regretted the decision for a second.

Omniblend Australia calls the Omniblend the "Wholefood Machine", and it is.  My standard smoothie formula is 1-2 cups of liquid and then as much fruit and veg as I can fit in the jug!  Some fruits needed peeling (like bananas of course, and citrus) but in most cases I don't peel or chop, it all goes in whole, even carrots!  Within 60 seconds you have a perfectly pureed and silky smoothie.

The machine itself is so simple to use that my 12yr old son is now a self sufficient smoothie maker.  You simply sit the jug on the cushioned base and choose either the 35 second, 60 second or 90 second automatic program.  

The 35 second cycle starts off on low, kicks up to medium and then finishes on high and is sufficient for doing most smoothies, even those with frozen fruits or ice.  The 60 second cycle goes through low, medium and high twice with a brief pause at the 30 second mark to allow the food to settle back down onto the blades.  I use this when wanting to process harder fruits and vegetables, such as carrot or pumpkin and for making nut milks and nut creams.  You also have full manual control with the low, medium, high and pulse buttons.

It is a loud machine (although quieter than the more expensive Vitamix), but it does the job so fast that it's over with before you know it.  The sound of the Omni doing it's work is usually greeted by curious faces wanting to know what delicious treat I have whipped up for them!  I bought the 2 litre model which as yet doesn't come with a sound hood, but the smaller 1.5 litre model does, but for home use I don't know that I'd worry too much about investing in one.  Those of us that are early risers make our smoothies the night before and store them in the fridge for the next morning.

At the time of writing this I have had my Omniblend V for almost two months, and it has handled everything I have thrown at it.  I haven't tested any of the other machines to compare but I can say that if you are in the market for a high powered blender and are conscious of your budget, this little beauty will do everything you need it to.  Time will be the true test of course, but with a 5 year warranty included in the price I can't imagine that I am going to regret my choice.