In case you missed it, we've been celebrating Western Living€™s 50th anniversary this year. And, it turns out, so has Thermomix.

Who, what? At least that was me, before I tested one out these last couple of months€”and now, to be honest, I'm pretty much obsessed with the countertop food processor with an integrated heating unit that's been hot in Europe for (literally) decades, and gaining steam over here these days. (Can I make more cooking metaphors?) 

I can€™t say I wasn€™t overwhelmed when I first unpacked the whole thing. there'sthe power base, and the main unit that fits into it, but there are also steaming baskets (that fit both inside and on top of the base), more than one lid for it, a measuring cup that's also a stopper, a spatula€¦ It's not immediately plug and play.

But I had a virtual consult with one of their Thermomix pros, who walked me through a simple risotto recipe€”and all of the pieces suddenly looked way less complicated. Helpful, even.

In the last couple of months, I€™ve made a handful of excellent soups, including a rich butternut squash and coconut, a creamy zucchini, a broccoli and stilton recipe that kind of blew my mind, and a watermelon gazpacho that got me through a heatwave. I€™ve also made my own condensed vegetable stock that I€™ve been using for just about everything I can think of, Thermomix and otherwise. I€™ve whipped up a broccoli and red pepper marinated salad that took all of five minutes, made a red pesto chicken salad, a tinga de pollo that I served in tacos, and a rich and creamy mushroom risotto that literally required no stirring. And a blueberry ice cream in five minutes that will be my go-to dessert treat now. Plus I€™ve boiled perfectly jammy soft-boiled eggs countless times.

It also totally changed my sourdough bread€”entirely because the integrated kitchen scale in it is ridiculously precise, compared to the (I now realize, useless) mini kitchen scale I’d been using. (I swear the latter often shrugged when I was weighing out flour and water€”and one time had to toss the entire load of ingredients when they collapsed on me.)

The no-brainer part: it comes Wifi-integrated and connects to the Cookidoo app, which literally walks me through each step of the recipe: blend, stirfy, cook, roughly chop, steam€¦ while I walk away from the machine and, I don't know, unload the dishwasher or do something efficient with my time, since I feel like I need to step up my game to match the ridiculous efficiency of the whole Thermomix situation.

So yes, I’ve become a little obsessed with it€”particularly during a summer when the west coast has been under a blanket of heat, and I cannot handle the idea of going anywhere near my stove.

The Thermomix TM6 has quickly become my most-used countertop appliance€”so much so that it lives on my counter full-time now, no tucking it away for occasional use. 

There’s a joke, “Q: How do you know someone does Crossfit? A: They won’t stop talking about Crossfit.”

That’s me and this excellent little machine. 

Thermomix, $2,099,