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DIY Beater to Bowl clearance on your Food Mixer or a New Beater to Bowl Attachment?

If you know the problem of dough sticking to the sides and bottom of the bowl when you are mixing then you may like to know about how to fix that depending on the type of mixer you have. This is known as beater to bowl clearance and can make a huge difference as when you get it right you do not have to keep stopping to clear the dough from the sides of the bowl and you will not end up with a lot of wastage.

When your mixer is straight from the factory it will be set to just clear the bowl when mixing. It is a delicate balance between touching the sides and scraping the bowl with the blades, however, it can be done.

The best way forward is to check your manual for beater to bowl clearance; if you do not have the instructions here they are;

Beater to Bowl clearance on Tilt-head model mixers

This type of mixer has a screw just below the area where the head is attached to the stand. You will need to unplug your mixer and tilt the head to locate the screw. If you turn it very slightly to the right (clockwise) it will lower the beater, a slight turn to the left (anti-clockwise) it will raise the beater.

Beater to Bowl clearance on Bowl-lift models

This type of mixer has an adjustment screw on the lower portion of the stand.  You will need to put the lift handle down to locate the screw. The same method is used as above, turn to the right for lowering and turn to the left for raising the beater.

You may have to make slight adjustments if you can hear the beater touching the sides.  Just adjust it gradually for the best results.

N.B You will need to be very careful not to touch the bowl with the beater as it can cause damage.

N.B It can also damage the motor.

N.B If you are unsure of how to do this and do not have instructions on how to do this in your product manual, check with your manufacturers help line.  A good branded product will have assistance and will be able to help you make the adjustments rather than trying to adjust it yourself.

If you are in the market for a new stand mixer take a look at Mixer Picks for honest reviews of the latest products on the market.

It is not easy to go into a store and testing a food mixer, you can’t really expect to be able to make a dough mix right there, that is where straight talking reviews can be very useful.

The good news is that if you are shopping around for a new food mixer there are now two types of beater blade on the market which address this problem.

The two types are BeaterBlade and SideSwipe Spatula Mixer Blade; here we can take a look at the two for comparison.


Looks and attaches pretty much the same as any other blade but it has food grade rubber “wings” along the edge of the paddle.

These “wings” are designed to continuously scrape the sides of the bowl so you no longer need to keep stopping and lifting the lid to manually scrape the ingredients from the side of the bowl. It is also designed to go into the dimple in the bottom of the bowl.

Whilst it is good for lighter mixing of cookie dough, cake batter, sugar frosting and nut butters it is not recommended for heavy doughs used in bread making, heavy cookie dough or frozen ingredients.

It can be safely cleaned in the dish washer (top rack).

SideSwipe Spatula Mixer Blade

The shape is similar to your usual blades but you will see that it has “fins”. They are made of silicone molded onto the edge, angled horizontally. This is designed to scrape the sides of the bowl and the ingredients in the bottom of the bowl.

Again, it is not recommended for very stiff doughs, frozen or hard chilled products.

It can also be safely cleaned in the dish washer (top rack).

Both types

The warranties are not great for these newer types of attachments, perhaps the manufacturers anticipate misuse!

The BeaterBlade is guaranteed for 1 year.

The SwideSwipe Spatula is guaranteed for 90 days (from date of purchase).

At the time of writing it is difficult to know which brands have which attachment available.  You have the link in this article offering up to date information on food mixers to help you choose.

Whether you want the “wings” of the bird or the “fins” of a fish to help you scrape the sides is another consideration!


A simple Guide to Blending Superfoods

Have you ever tried munching your way through a leafy green salad for breakfast?  No?  Really?  Leaves are just for garnish right?  No, wrong!

The fact that superfoods can be blended and made into a delicious drink with a little imagination make it so much easier to kick start a healthy habit with a blender, check out wow what a site, for up to date reviews on the latest blenders.

If you can imagine this smoothie; kale, spinach, celery, cucumber, mint, ginger and coconut water then you make it!

On its own you may just manage downing the coconut water which is a stand- alone delicious and nutritious drink.

Leaves alone can be taste a bit bitter, but with the pungency of ginger, the sweetness of the coconut water and mint there is the perfect balance.

The coconut, ginger and mint have good digestive properties to counteract any adverse effects of the leaves.

Spinach and kale are both packed with vitamins and minerals, spinach will give you iron and kale is even rich in protein. Mint also has a powerful antioxidant as do all greens. Cucumbers are cooling; they will give you plenty of B vitamins (all great anti-stress vitamins).

Another great smoothie is;

Blend together avocado, pineapple, pear, spinach, chia seeds and almond milk, giving you plenty of fiber, some sweetness along with lots of nutrients.  Pineapple is rich in bromelain which is good for arthritis and digestion. Avocados are packed with vitamins and minerals and also help absorption of these nutrients in other foods.

Fruits to be careful with!

May cause oral allergy syndrome

Whilst mint is a good remedy for seasonal allergies there are other allergies you need to be aware of.

For example some people suffer burning mouth syndrome with fruit added to smoothies.  The reason is that some fruits do unfortunately cause this reaction in some people.

Hence why it is better to use one fruit at a time and use other ingredients to add sweetness such as almond milk or coconut water.

Most obviously you will not be using any nut milks or butters if you have a nut allergy!

It is also a good idea to keep to greens rather than fruits with blending a cocktail of nutritious raw ingredients.  Fruit is high in sugar in the form of fructose and you don’t want spikes in blood sugar at any time of day.

Some of the more common allergenic fruits are bananas, mangoes, papaya, kiwifruit, apples, oranges, melons and strawberries.  This type of allergy is unpleasant with symptoms of itching, burning or even lips swelling.  It would be better for this reason to stick to just one fruit at a time. Once you are sure you have no allergic reaction to any particular fruit you can go ahead.  Even try strawberries with and without leaves added.  There is a lot more nutrition in the leaves.

This type of allergy is caused by the proteins similar to protein antigens in pollen, so hay fever sufferers are more likely to get this reaction.

Bromelain is not good for everyone!

Whilst herbalists will often prescribe bromelain from pineapple for arthritis, if you are sensitive to this enzyme you will probably already know because it can cause painful tongue pain and burning. The most concentrated bromelain is found in the fiber in the core of pineapple so you can try leaving that out of your blends.  If it still burns your tongue you may want to try different fruit, pears are very neutral and very rarely cause any allergies.

How long can you store your smoothies?

As your smoothies are rich in live enzymes, giving you a great boost of fresh nutrition it is better to make enough to drink or sip as soon as possible.  If you do make a large batch try to consume it within 48 hours from the fridge.  Buy some decent glass containers as plastic storage is more likely to explode as gases form in fresh smoothies after a very short time.

Once you start blending you will find your own favourite combinations, check out the many recipes for different types of smoothies.

Although I have said some of these fruits are allergenic to some people, you will probably know already what foods burn or cause problems for you.  As there are so many fruits available you will be able to eat some and not others.


Try some carrots for sweetness, beets are also sweet and can make a change from adding fruit.  If you are concerned about sugar and calories just stick to greens and added lemon or lime for taste, they also have anti-bacterial properties plus a good kick of vitamin C.

If you’re fed up with shop bought smoothies and the premium price perhaps it is about time to try a home-made smoothie, I hope this article is enough to get your taste buds begging you for a new purpose built blender!

Rice Cookers Historically

How simple a gadget is the rice cooker?  Very simple and more versatile than a toaster!  Most western households have a toaster; most Asian households have a rice cooker.

As the Japanese invented the idea, the best rice cookers are probably still made in Japan or at least their design is Japanese and they may be made on license around the world.

The first commercially produced rice cooker was made by Sony and was in fact a bit of a disaster, fairly primitive.  The rice came out either over cooked or under cooked, depending on the weight of the water added.

Apparently it was Toshiba who came up with the first commercially viable rice cooker in 1955. This design was using a method named “double-pot indirect cooking”; a cup of water poured into the outer pot, the machine turning off automatically when the all the water evaporated and really not much different to the principle of rice cookers today. Whoops some say it was Mitsubishi, but we may never know, one of the two anyway.

As companies competed the manufacturers were coming up with more ways of making the rice cooker more useful.  In the 1960’s advances in technology meant that rice cookers could keep the rice warm after it was finished the cooking process, some even had timers.

Then came induction heating (IH) as a standard for cooking rice. It was using an electric current passed through coils around the pot producing a magnetic field, heating up the metal, phew.  Metal heats up quickly with an electric current running through and this meant the pot heated up quickly and the rice was cooked evenly.

Now fuzzy logic is everywhere says, your new washing machine may be a bit fuzzy, it can detect how much dirt is in the water, fab for getting your clothes nice and clean or a quick wash if they are not so dirty.  The same principle is applied to the rice cooker, a computerized rice cooker in other words.

As brown rice is now considered a far healthier option, some rice cookers will give you a button for brown rice!  Yes it does take longer to cook so the method is slightly different. Perhaps you don’t want plain old rice, hit the rice porridge and there you have your rice porridge for breakfast, perhaps a timer would suit you so it can be ready for your wake up call.

They come in all shapes and sizes now, from dinky little basic on/keep warm rice cookers to 2 in 1 rice cookers with steamers and other abilities.

There are rice cookers which double as crock pots or pressure cookers and whichever type of cooker you go for; rice should now be foolproof, no more undercooked rice and no more mushy wet stuff.

Different types of pot

  • Chemically treated non stick
  • Aluminum
  • Steel
  • Clay

A non-stick pot is great so long as you take care not to scratch it, some people cannot resist scouring the pot, definitely not a good idea for a non-stick pan.  These non-stick pans are easy to clean, sturdy, not breakable so good if you are a bit clumsy in the kitchen.

Aluminum is also easy to clean, even if you manage to burn your rice, yes it is possible a short soak will lift the burnt bits and it will be as good as new.  You can treat it quite roughly as well.  However, some people will be concerned about the amount of aluminum that gets into the cooked rice so is not so popular.

Stainless steel is a great alternative to chemically treated non-stick and aluminum and even clay. Stainless steel is relatively cheap as well.

The clay pot is the most natural type of pot but oh so breakable if you drop it you will be out of action until you get a replacement.

In Asia you will see people throwing the rice into their rice cooker, throwing in some water, switching it on!  That’s it, no seasoning, no nothing, out comes perfect rice.

Here it all is, different types of rice cooker all basically working on the same principle of bringing you perfect rice every time.

Five Safety Measures To Implement As Soon As Confined Space Training Is Complete

What are your responsibilities when running a company operating in or with confined spaces? Obviously, learning how to get confined space guidance is a main necessity. Without training your employees accordingly, you risk facing legal problems, as well as a series of unhappy accidents, injuries and even fatalities on site. Even if you believe that there are no confined spaces interfering with your operations, it might be a wise idea to just hire an expert to conduct a detailed evaluation. It is hard to tell how efficient you are without any experience, so opt for professional help.

Keep in mind that taking your employees through a course is not everything. Once the training session is complete, it is your task to conduct a professional and efficient implementation of all the required safety measures to ensure a proper working environment.

A breathing apparatus represents one of the main necessities. Such devices are actually vital if the air in a confined space is not breathable. It makes no difference what the problem is. The confined space might be covered in vapors, fumes or gas. Perhaps the level of oxygen is under the safety standards too, even if there are no harmful gases in there. Try to avoid the most common mistake in this industry – enhancing the air with extra oxygen. Exaggerate with the oxygen and you risk causing a fatal explosion.

Preparing emergency equipments is a top notch responsibility too. Unexpected situations arise when least expected. Even if nothing happened so far, it is just not worth taking such risks. Even if a worker is supposed to spend a minute or five minutes inside a confined space, get ready for the worst. Being prepared is the optimal way to prevent unexpected issues. A lot of people tend to avoid the hassle. They dislike the idea to prepare or spend five to ten minutes before and after every preparation. They do it in the beginning, but they soon realize that unexpected situations are not really so common. They may not, but there is a decent chance to experience such things when you least expect them.

Rescue equipments are not to be ignored either. Most commonly, they imply specific items to pull victims out of the confined spaces, not to mention about sending someone in to pick victims up. In nine out of ten cases, rescue harnesses are perfect. Of course, it depends on the emergency type. Sometimes, you might need more than that. Different confined space training comes with different risks and specific rescue equipments, but the training session should provide all the required information from this point of view.

Remember that a professional communications system might often be needed to enhance the communication between those who are inside the confined environment and those who monitor actions from the outside. Unless you have cameras or other surveillance methods, there is no other way to tell if someone is endangered or injured. Potential victims are supposed to seek help if they detect any dangers, hence the necessity of professional communications.

Last, but not least, never underestimate the importance of a good alarm. But then, you need to become familiar with it and perform a few tests too. Your workers should attend these tests as well. Find out how the alarm is raised and what circumstances can affect it. Does anyone have to monitor it? Is it loud? How fast does it react? What does it actually react to? Normally, a good alarm system must be customized according to the dangers of the confined environment.


Exploring The Most Popular Dangers Associated With Confined Spaces

Becoming familiar with the term of confined space is quite challenging. Interested to learn about confined spaces? As an employer, it is actually mandatory. You do not have to study yourself or conduct training courses on your own. Instead, you have to hire an expert team for these operations. A team will identify the potential risks associated with your company and determine whether or not you need a hand. Even if it looks like there are no risks involved, keep in mind that you are not a professional, so some confined spaces may not necessarily be so obvious in the first place anyway.

Aside from the legal regulations, training your employees is also about a solid personal protection. Any accident on site can be attacked in court by your workers. If you have failed to train them accordingly, you risk exquisite penalties. Besides, you do not want any dramas within your company. No employer wants dead workers, severe injuries, bad news reports or a negative reputation. With these factors in mind, understanding the dangers of confined spaces should be a main priority for you. These dangers are quite diversified though.

The lack of oxygen is by far the most common danger in confined spaces. It is also responsible for a series of unexpected accidents too. For instance, a basic chemical reaction between the oxygen around and some soils may reduce its properties, so it is no longer so easy to inhale. Displacing oxygen is a very common issue too. It can arise from multiple directions. Think about the chemical reactions between groundwater on chalk, for instance. Limestone and groundwater may have similar effects, especially in an enclosed environment. When the oxygen is altered and no longer breathable, workers face a series of issues.

The lack of oxygen can be determined in a lot of different manners. The transportation industry is exposed to plenty of cargo reactions. Freight containers, holds or lorries are just some of the most popular transportation methods. When the products react with the oxygen around, the air is contaminated and no longer helpful for the human body. Finally, do not forget about vessels or steel tanks. They might look safe, but rust on the internal walls will decrease the levels of oxygen.

While the missing oxygen is the first thing people think about in confined spaces, risks can go way further than that. An accidental spill or a moment of inattention can become very challenging when handling dangerous substances. It makes no difference if it comes to solid substances or liquids. Some substances can fill the enclosed environment within seconds or minutes while endangering workers. Some others release fumes and gases. The worst part is that inexperienced workers may not even notice these changes in the air, so sooner or later, they end up fainting. Generally, these problems occur when handling substances or disturbing them. Some free flowing solid elements may also solidify and cause blockages or collapses. Grain is the most common sample, so pay attention if you run a silo.

The confined profile of silos is defined by other issues as well. Unfortunately, these places are not properly maintained or cleaned, so the concentrations of dust are way over the healthy limits. High concentrations will lead to inhalations, so employees risk becoming victims. Flour silos are some of the most popular samples, but such environments can be a lot more dangerous if you handle other substances and not flour.

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