If you are new to baking and have decided to take it up recently, particularly given its massive surge in popularity, then the question of immersion blender vs. hand blender might be a topic of interest to you. This will be especially relevant if you are just beginning to research into what equipment you will require to achieve professional-style baking results.
The interest in baking is in no small part down to the plethora of factual and reality television programs based around the art of the cake, the biscuit, the muffin, and the cookie! It seems that everyone is jumping on the bandwagon and looking to prepare their own artisan-style breads, pastries and baked goods.
We certainly think that is to be applauded but appreciate that there is a lot of confusion on the subject especially around the immersion blender versus hand blender debate, and also what is known as a mixer, so we’re going to try and clear up some of the common misconceptions today.
Immersion blenders go by a variety of different names from wand blender to hand blender, hand-held blender to stick blender and the terms are frequently interchangeable. They are all characterized though by their shape and function and are a very different looking kitchen gadget to what is known as a mixer.
Mixers and blenders look and perform differently but are still both incredibly useful and versatile tools to have as part of your cooking appliance arsenal. Plenty of customers get the two mixed up (pardon the pun), and it’s easy to see why there is so much confusion regarding what’s an immersion blender, a hand blender or even a hand mixer.
Fundamentally a blender turns things into liquids. In some regions, like the United Kingdom, for example, a blender might even be categorized as a liquidizer, yet another synonym for this popular kitchen product. A blender is perfect for making sauces, batters, and mixtures.
With a mixer, the action is that of combining ingredients together, and the functionality is intended to bind ingredients together rather than optimizing them to be turned into liquids. So bakers will use a mixer to make dough but a blender to create a batter. Both machines are designed to be held in the hand which gives them their ultimate versatility and neither, of course, are as powerful as the more robust countertop versions that come with a sturdy motor.
Immersion blenders are fantastic for smoothing out a chunky soup, even while it’s bubbling away on the stovetop. It’s a much more practical way of pureeing something than attempting to pour the hot contents into a blender. Immersion blenders are also fabulous for recreating lots of fresh recipes like salsas, salad dressings, and soups.
They are typically compact in design and take up virtually no storage space, which makes them an excellent option for anyone living in a smaller apartment or who might have a galley-style kitchen where space is minimal. A good quality immersion blender can be purchased relatively inexpensively which makes them a budget-friendly choice. They are fast and easy to use, efficient and straightforward to clean up too which has to be a huge bonus.
Just clean the blending stick element of your device in hot water and any bowl or pot that you were using to blend together your latest culinary creation. It’s that simple. For salsas, smoothies, soups and sauces, an immersion blender really can’t be beat.
With a hand mixer, you will be able to really effectively beat egg whites in a bowl, create fluffy meringues and create recipes that include waffle and pancake batters or anything that requires cream. It establishes a whipping type of action as opposed to a liquidizing one.
With a motorized food processor, you can take things a stage further and carry out the functionalities of both an immersion and a hand blender in the one convenient but much bulkier kitchen appliance, but you clearly can’t take it to the stovetop with you for on demand blitzing of fresh, hot soups.
Whatever you choose to call it personally, immersion, stick and hand blenders are one in the same. The principle is that all three must be actively immersed within a food in order to blend without making any mess. It’s this immersive quality which makes up their principle design, and it’s that function which allows you to use them equally effectively on hot as well as cold foods, in a bowl, a pot, a container of some description and even on the oven top.
Immersion, stick and hand blenders are great for blending smaller quantities of food and are particularly effective for taking leftover dinner and turning that into your baby’s next fresh meal. While their practical uses are nowhere near as varied as those of a Mixer, they can conveniently come in cordless versions too which makes them super useful to have around the kitchen.
Versions with stronger and more powerful blades are a good option for blending ice to make smoothies, but it’s always best that you refer to the manufacturers recommended uses first to make sure that the model you have bought is robust enough to for all the jobs you need it to perform.
One thing for sure is that they are incredibly popular and practical. Immersion or hand blenders already have a popular and well-earned special place in many domestic kitchens because of their convenient and practical application as well as their compact design and effortless cleaning.
While not to be confused with their larger countertop blenders or food processors, if you are short on space or restricted by budget, then a stick-style Blender offers a viable alternative with the versatility to create a whole host of family favorite recipes including sauces and soups and all kinds of liquid-based batters and mixtures.