There is no truer mark of a great kitchen appliance than one which you begin using within fifteen minutes of bringing into the kitchen and then continue to use several times a week.

A kettle and toaster are obvious contenders for being hardworking and indispensible, but now they have a competitor: The new Kambrook X-Blade stick blender.

I came home one evening last month with this product and within fifteen minutes of opening it, I was using it. Using it, and crowing about it on Twitter as it happened.

With four handy options and interchangeable attachments to choose from, this blender gives incredible versatility when you have a recipe that goes through couple of processes, without the need for lots of washing up or fiddling about.


That night, I made chicken parmagiana and used some stale crusts of bread and an old heel of parmesan which the X-blender easily turned into tasty breadcrumbs. I then changed attachments with one click and used the potato ricer to make the smoothest and creamiest mashed potatoes I’d had in ages.  You can use the hard-wearing metal stick blender attachment in the supplied jug to make a great gravy, or or a wonderful salsa, or even some food for baby. The options are endless.

Here I have given you a recipe for Potato Croquettes, a classic French recipe that is just as versatile as the X-Blade. For one thing, this is a fantastic way to use up leftovers. Mashed potato provides a great basis for anything you need to use up – last night’s vegetables can be chopped (speedily in the small food processing bowl) and added to the mash, or you can even add a knob of chilled garlic and herbed butter to create a wonderful variation of a Kiev filling. I opted for cheese and bacon and then used the blender to make a sensational Aioli, that wonderful garlic mayonnaise we all love. The X-Blade made it in less than seven minutes with such incredible results I may never go without some in the fridge again.


Potato Croquettes 

Makes 10



For the Aioli:


  1. Scrub the potatoes of all dirt and cut away any ‘eyes’, then place them, whole and unpeeled, in a saucepan of lightly salted water and bring them to the boil. Simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the tip of a sharp knife goes into the centre smoothly.
  2. While the potatoes are cooking, heat one spoonful of oil in a small frypan over medium heat and add the diced bacon. Gently fry for five minutes until the bacon is browned and starting to crisp. Drain on paper towel and set to one side.
  3. Drain the potatoes and when cool enough to handle, peel the skins away. Place the whole potatoes in a large bowl.
  4. Use the potato ricer attachment of the X Blade Blender to mash the potatoes until very smooth.  Add the grated cheese, bacon, thyme and season with salt and pepper before mixing well.
  5. Mould the potato into cylinder shapes about 5-6cm long and a little fatter than a wine cork. You can make them larger or smaller as you wish.
  6. Place the beaten eggs in one bowl, the flour in another.
  7. Tear the day old bread into chunks and place in the bowl of the X-Blade Blender and process until you have fine breadcrumbs. Tip the crumbs into a third bowl.
  8. Pour oil into a medium sized saucepan to a depth of 8 cm and heat over medium heat to a temperature of 180°C.  While the oil is heating, dip each croquette into flour, then egg, then breadcrumbs to coat completely and lay them on a plate until ready to fry.
  9. The oil is hot enough when you can stand the handle of a wooden spoon in the oil and it creates small fast rising bubbles. Use a heat-proof slotted spoon to lower the croquettes into the oil – cook them in batches of three or four at a time for about three minutes or until they are crisp and golden brown. Drain on paper towel and keep them warm while you finish cooking the remainder.



  1. Place the whole unpeeled garlic bulbs in a square of foil and drizzle with a little oil, then wrap the foil around the garlic. Roast in a 180°C oven for 40 minutes until the garlic is softened.  Cut the tops off each bulb and squeeze the softened roasted garlic into the bowl of the X-Blade blender.
  2. Add egg yolks, lemon juice, zest, mustard and a pinch of sea salt to the bowl and blend thoroughly for thirty seconds to combine.
  3. Add the oil, about 2 tablespoons at a time, to the eggs and blend thoroughly to combine. Continue blending for a further 20-30 seconds before stopping the motor and adding another two tablespoons of oil. Repeat this adding and blending stage until the oil is incorporated and the mayonnaise is very thick and creamy.
  4. Add 1 tablespoon hot tap water right at the end and blend for a further 10 seconds to emulsify the sauce. Check for seasoning, but it should be good and garlicky.
  5. Store in a clean screwtop jar in the fridge for up to three weeks. Aioli is a fabulous accompaniment to a rustic bread salad, green beans, potato wedges or with poached chicken in a sandwich.



b2ap3_thumbnail_image005.jpgRecipe created and shared by Sandra Reynolds

Sandra Reynolds has written over 1000 nutritious budget-friendly recipes for her blog The $120 Food Challenge, surviving unemployment payments and Aldi checkout lines along the way and turned personal adversity into a thriving blog.

Her first cookbook, The $120 Food Challenge is published by Penguin Viking and Sandra is now writing her second cookbook. She still shops at Aldi every week.