Making juices may seem simple. There are a variety of devices used for making juices. The ideal juicer will make the maximum amount of liquid from a given quantity of plant material, leaving a quite dry residue behind which, incidentally, makes a first class material for composting organically grown fruits and vegetables.
An electric blender can make a juice-like liquid from soft raw materials and is quite good with raspberries and similar fruits although it is usually advisable to add a little water to the mixture before blending However, for nearly all sources of raw juices the most efficient machine is a purpose built juicing machine.
These represent a sizeable expenditure for the average family and it is often more economical to buy one where the basic motor unit can perform a number of different functions so that the whole is a useful culinary aid. For example, a model which is not only a continuous juicer but also shreds or slices for raw salads, blends and chops.
Every type has its own special merits and its particular disadvantages. Which you choose must depend on your individual circumstances, but an experienced health store owner is invariably a good and willing guide. But there are certain points that it is as well to be aware of in advance.
Any reasonable manufacturer will give a one year guarantee against faults in manufacture. The machine will be made of high quality plastics and chemically inert metals, such as stainless steel rather than the more reactive aluminum, in places where it is in contact with the juice.
The cheapest type and one that is usually very efficient consists of a basket with perforations into which the fresh materials are put through the feeding hole. There are cutters which divide the matter into fine particles. The basket whirls round expressing the juice through the holes by centrifugal force. After every pint or so of juice has been prepared the machine must be dismantled (always check to see if this is a simple or a tortuous task), the pulp has to be removed, the machine re-assembled and the process repeated. These are excellent value for the moderate user but very tiresome if you want many pints each day.
The next kind is the continuous machine in which the juice comes out of one aperture and the pulp from another. This is very convenient and some makers claim to have juiced two tons of apples without stopping. In these machines the design of the pulp outlet is very critical for especially with the softer fruits, there is a risk of clogging which if unnoticed leads to a table covered with leaking liquids and a very messy juicer. Do not be put off for the majority of makers have overcome such faults. Just make certain that you buy on the understood condition that continuous means more or less what it says.
The extraction rate is often a little lower that for other types but this is offset by the great convenience. It is important to remember to clean all juicing machines after use or else the rotting and caked-on residue will make a visit to the repairers a premature necessity.
The next class of machine is a hydraulic press which first shreds and then subjects the pulp to between 3,000 and 7,000lb (1375-3175kg) pressure leaving the plant matter almost bone dry. Such a machine is costly and often hard to obtain but probably the most efficient and certainly very desirable for institutional use. It is too large and awkward for normal juicing purposes.
Finally we must consider the non-electric or manual methods of juicing which have, after all, been the only means possible until recently Very good results are obtainable with a small scale wine press. The fruit or vegetables are chopped and put into a slatted, circular wooden basket a threaded post runs up the centre and a long lever forces a strong plate downwards onto the material forcing the juice out. A good model will last so well that you may leave it to your heirs.
A good juicer is an investment in health that is small compared to the great benefits you will derive from its regular use. Not only is it essential for therapeutic purposes but, when you are fit and well, fresh raw juices can be prepared into subtle and delicious cocktails of entrancing gastronomic delight. Who else but the host/hostess with a juicer can offer good health with a drink?
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Kevin Pederson has been managing a number of natural home remedies websites which have information on all the common and serious illnesses and many benefits from the different juices and ways of extracting it.
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