The Ninja beats pricier brands for slicing and dicing its way through my summer produce.

The Ninja. Bring on the watermelon slushies.I spent the weekend building a new community garden with locals from my neighbourhood – hauling truckloads of soil and transforming a once-grassy knoll into more than 30 new plots. I’ve got about a dozen seedlings staying warm on my windowsill in anticipation of my new plot: tomatoes, basil, peppers, dill—essentially the makings of a great summer salsa in a couple months’ time. It’s around this time of year that I become obsessed with my Ninja blender: its multi-blade design means that it whizzes through mincing tomatoes, garlic and japaleno in the small container (for that spicy salsa), and crushing ice and fruit in the larger one (hello watermelon smoothies). I put paid to its fortissimo this past weekend while testing out the Ginger Pound Cake recipe we’re running in our upcoming June issue—you won’t want to miss Heidi Noble’s family recipe (and it’s half-cup of minced ginger—thanks, Ninja).Ninja Master Prep Food and Drink Maker, $69.99, available at Canadian Tire,