Today, I led another cooking class with French Chef David Baruthio. He asked me to bring my blender, because someone in his kitchen accidentally broke his over the weekend. Our class started at 10 a.m., so we didn’t have time to by a brand-new, state-of-the-art one for the class.
So I brought in the blender that my husband’s grandmother gave to me when Dave and I moved to New York in the 1980s. His Grandma Margie was moving out of her apartment and into a home, and had no more use for it. She had had it for years and years.
That blender followed me from Brooklyn to Manhattan, then stayed in storage while I lived in England a year. In the 90s it followed me to Ann Arbor, and back here to Amerique Profonde; it’s almost as old as I am.
When I was packing it up to take to my cooking classes, Dave said, “Are you sure you want to take that ratty old thing to a cooking class?”
Well, we didn’t have that much of a choice….but the thing was, I’ve never met a better blender. Its motor is super powerful; I love the push-button panel (versus those padded panels of today that will wear out in about 17 days). I also love the fact that it’s part of my culinary history. I remember making my first mayonnaise in this thing! Frozen Margaritas (when they were the thing)! Tapenade! And oh that glorious day I discovered how well they worked for pureeing soups! The list of great discoveries goes on.
But today when I was unpacking it after my class—you guessed it—I broke the glass container. A great excuse to get a new one, I suppose.
Thing is, I’m not sure I’m ready. Sure, there’s the money issue: The way I figure it, if I buy a new blender, that will be about $100, versus a new container, which is $20. That $80 can buy me a bottle of my all-time favorite French Champagne.
Or, if I buy that Vitamix blender everyone tells me I should by, it would cost about $450. (If I don’t buy the Vitamix—and simply replace my Sunbeam container—I could buy a case of my favorite French Champagne…..)
But most of all, there’s a sentimental attachment. And the fact that its motor is built like a V-8 engine. And the fact that Chef David said something that has stuck with me: “C’est dans les vieilles pots qu’on fait les meilleurs soupes.” (It’s in the old pots that one makes the best soup.)
And frankly, the people at my cooking class kind of liked the “old pot.” It was a bit of relic and a conversation piece.
Still, the Vitamix blender seems to be calling my name.
Out with the old? In with the new? Please help me decide on my Facebook page: