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David Ross

The "Ninja" Master Prep

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I’ve been looking for years to find a low-end blender that would crush ice into tiny little shards so I could make myself an Old-Fashioned Icee like they sell at convenience stores.

I never had much luck at finding the right blender, I think partly because I didn’t want to shell out big bucks for the professional types of blenders we’ve discussed here and partly because I was too lazy to research what types of blenders did the best job for mincing ice.

Last week when I was cleaning out some old recipe files I came upon a copycat recipe for the “7-Eleven Cherry Slurpee” that I’d been holding onto for nearly four years. I set out on mission to find a shave-ice machine that I thought I could find on some post-holiday special.

I found the “Ninja” Master Prep blender by Euro-Pro at my local Shopko. I’m not sure if you have Shopko stores in your neck of the woods, but they are basically a low-end Target store.

The promotional material on the “Ninja” Master Prep proclaims that you can “transform ice cubes into perfect, creamy frozen drinks and desserts in the blink of an eye. Make perfectly chopped salads, salsas and dips quickly without fear of uneven chunks or worse—turning the whole thing to mush. The powerful, interchangeable Master Pod easily switches from the Mini Master Prep (ideal for chopping) to the Master Prep Pitcher (perfect for frozen drinks and smoothies).”

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So far I’ve only made the 7-Eleven Cherry Slurpee and it was fantastic—icy cold and with a sweet cherry flavor. It wasn’t “artisanal” in flavor or anywhere near a cherry slurpee made with anything close to the juice of real cherries, but the texture was just as I remember from the Slurpee’s of days gone by. (And the flavor was darn good too).

Next week I’ll provide some photos of the Cherry Slurpee, but in the meantime,here are the workings of the “Ninja”-

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The blades differ from most blenders I’ve seen in that there are two-tiers of blades-two at the bottom and two blades a few inches above. Rather than the ice all catching down in the bottom of the blender glass, the two-tier blades keep the ice swirling during chopping. You just push the top of the “Ninja” to pulse the blades and the ice is chopped and minced very quickly.

The “Ninja” is currently for sale at Amazon for $39.99 plus shipping. I bought mine at the local Shopko for $34.99.

I haven’t tried the smaller canister that is used for chopping and processing vegetables. I’m of the mind that the blades rush so fast that they would turn a chopped salad into a puree of salad ingredients and I fear that the plastic parts may not last for the long haul. One has to be very, very careful when handling the blades. As they say on “TV,” the blades of the “Ninja” can cut through newspaper and cans like a razor blade.

Anyone else had any experiences with this whirling dervish?

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I love my Ninja so much, I don't even put away the motor thingy anymore. I use it for all blending and food processor chopping tasks. Good stuff. It makes the loveliest foamy hot chocolate. It makes the loveliest salsa. I use the small canister more than the larger pitcher. I make a fast salad dressing in it with a few tablespoons of oil and vinegar, and some seasonings. Everything about this little machine is awesome. I got it as a gift last year, and it's so great. Mine has two each of the pitcher, and the small canister, and 2 blade assemblies for each size.

Edit: The blade can also cut through flesh and never dull. I stepped on the double blade for the pitcher, and it sliced a very deep line in my heel, and it's fine! My heel...less so.


Edited by Lilija (log)

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