I am rather gadget-averse: Before I add something to my kitchen, I need to become sure that I will use it. Last year, I finally convinced myself that I could use an immersion blender and I am happy to report that, since the day it arrived, it has been put to work often enough to justify its purchase.
Recently, during a conversation, the immersion blender was mentioned and I remembered reading, almost a year ago, an article in Italian (referencing one in Spanish) about his inventor, Gabriel Lluelles, whom you can see in this photo with his brainchild. According to the article, Lluelles invented the minipimer in 1959. The name comes from the producing company Pimer (Pequeñas Industrias Mecánico Eléctricas Reunidas). While the name of the gadget in question in Italian is mixer ad immersione (where the first word comes from English), the brand name minipimer is often used.
A few days ago, I used my mixer ad immersione to make something other than soup, and since I liked the result a lot, I will share it here. It was one of those cases in which I made things up as I went along. The dish started with a cavolfiore (cauliflower) that was joined in the steam basket by a cavolo broccolo (broccoli), both cut into florets. After steaming and mashing them with a schiacciapatate (potato masher — after you listen to the audio file, I hope you'll agree with me that this i a nice-sounding word), I decided that I wanted to add carote (carrots) to the mix. In the vegetable drawer I found a couple of pastinache (parsnips) and I thought they would round up the dish nicely. I washed, peeled and cut the root vegetables into pieces and baked them in an oiled pan at 400 F, together with the leaves of two sprigs of timo (thyme).
When the root vegetables were ready, I added them to the half-mashed cauliflower and broccoli and then realized that the next step would be a perfect application for my immersion blender. You can see the result in the photo. Some parmigiano, (freshly grated), salt and freshly ground black pepper, all to taste, completed the dish. We had it for dinner at a friend's house as a side dish to crab cakes and I was very pleased with both the flavor and the texture. What can I say? Viva il minipimer! (Hurrah for the immersion blender!)