“ Brand: Morphy Richards / Kitchen Hardware Hand Blender / 300W power / Single speed / Brushed chrome finish „
Surrounded by so many hand blender models on the market it seems really confusing to anyone who is looking for a hand blender which can do the job as intended. Firstly I only wanted something which is basic and does the job but there were a few requirments for this basic wish. Oh I dare say I could have well spent in the vicinity of £25 to £45 for an all in one chopper, hand blender and whisk model made by Morphy Richards, or Braun to equip me with all that I need in the kitchen, and downsizing from my already capable micro sized Kenwood food processor, I'd then be forced to sell the food processor on EBay or Gumtree.
Or I could have spent £10 at Argos to buy the cheapest from the cheap in the form of a Cookworks hand blender but I'm on the look out for something which looks as if it will last, won't blemish with food stains and does not come sheathed in white plastic. Not that I mind the Kenwood I bought for my mum but I'm not her and I don't colour code my kitchen (everything has to be white or black according to her!). Nor do I want something which looks like a sex toy - the Philips "Billy" model springs to mind here and at the price of £17-99 with only 170 watts it did not impress me either with its low power or toy look. This model from Morphy Richards however cost me £16-99 from a private hardware electrical store in town and what attracted me initially to it was its bigger size, height and professional promise as it is entirely made out of brushed stainless steel.
** General Prices & Design **
* Morphy Richards initially priced it at £24-99 on their website.
This hand blender could almost be endorsed by Anthony Worrall Thompson but he has already signed his name to Breville products. Here though you get a long elongated black glossy box with silver capital writing which shows "Kitchen Hardware" in large lettering accompanied by "Morphy Richards Professional," in similar writing. Infact it could have been copied from Breville's Chef inspired kitchen appliance range. To the middle side of the box, you get to see a blurred picture of a couple of Chef's in black and white doing various kitchen tasks. This picture and the wording is what attracted me to the product but then it goes to show never trust a foggy picture!!
For environmentalists you will love the packaging as everything bar the plastic bag it comes in is recycleable. The hand blender is supplied in a plastic bag with a cardboard slice which covers the blade. Before this a graduated measuring beaker and at the top with a plug, you can also find a grey plastic wall mount which allows the unit to be mounted. A credit sized recipe booklet also comes enclosed; sounds very professional and promising doesn't it? After all, it doesn't stop there - Morphy Richards have done a whole range of "Professional" branded kitchen goods such as a copy of Kenwood's Chef, a high powered food processor and juicer and another hand blender with the extra chopping jug.
** Nar's Quick Skip Product Spec **
* All incased in a brushed metal effect.
* Detachable stainless steel foot with permanent fitted stainless steel blade.
* Acrylic measured mixing goblet included. (1 litre)
* User manual (useless but has plenty of user safety warnings)
* 300 watts with one speed push button activation (manually operated)
* Professionally designed (or so MR would have you believe)
* Kitchen Hardware range brochure. (just in case you wish to accessorize)
Previously my experience of a hand blender rests with my cousin who has my basic 10 year old 75 watt Micromark hand blender which has done a brilliant job at purifying fruit, soups and general smoothies and like this Morphy Richards model, it has only one speed. I think Hinari/Micromark/Cookworks/Bush have had the right idea all along;
Whereas other well known makes such as Tefal, Moulinex, Kenwood and Braun have all featured an all in one body with their ranges of hand blenders without detachable feet, these cheap makes usually have the latter to keep cost down. And it seems nowadays given with this type of blender, also at £16-99 by a large company such as Morphy Richards it is surprising to see a detachable foot. In their mind however "Professional" has only been applied to the all metal silver design and high powered motors and the fact that it looks good in any kitchen.
Blending soups therefore poses no problem for the Morphy Richards or liquid based food that you want to blitz. It does it well, but then it should because of its larger foot and high powered motor. For blending fruit such as strawberries and carrots, (not together!) the Morphy Richards copes well after having to plunge the stick up and down into the acrylic beaker supplied (although the beaker doesn't look or feel as it will last despite the fact that it is made of thick PVC clear plastic) to break up the food into more capable parts for easier blending and purifying. It has nearly been a year since purchase and the beaker is still intact however.
Blending nuts however has been difficult -, this blender has a good general grinding characteristic but it only manages small parts of nuts - finer grainy qualities cannot be done with this hand blender. The more expensive model with the acrylic jug and chopping blade (not supplied here) has ice crushing blades and finer grinding capabilities.
More obvious points are the facts of its basic specification; it only has one speed available and despite the high price, it's the kind of button where I have to keep my finger on the button held in for the speed to activate. My Micromark however has one speed and the button can either be pushed in and held on its own, or used as a pulse function.
And in use it also reveals another problem; noise and vibration.
Other companies such as Dualit and RoboChef make professionally designed hand blenders but they are also very expensive, double insulated and last a lot longer in performance times. Here although the motor noise is average against other hand blenders I have used, what becomes more apparent due to its all metal body is the vibration from the motor. I don't like using it much because the vibrations are quite strong - MR need to do improvements here if this is to be classed as a professional hand blender - particularly with noise and motor vibration harshness. John Lewis were selling the more pricier "Fusion" model which is similar in look to this model but it has the more important rubberised hand grip set on the handle itself and 5 speeds to choose from.
Another aspect is obvious heat build up on the metal body casing. The motor seems to heat up very quickly even if the hand blender is used for less than a minute with general food tasks and thanks to the fact that the body is metal, I can feel it even more as it sits sliding about in my hand. Try it on harder food and the motor really starts to strain which is never a good sign. There is an actual curve to the model's design where logically it defies you where you put your hand, but there is no actual grip and I found my hand slipping down the collar of the blender rather than staying put. The slippery ness of the metal was more evident when dealing with a myriad of blending tasks in one go and in this respect this is perhaps why plastic hand blenders are better. So all in all, perhaps Morphy Richards have created a dildo to blend food with!
Much as the MR looks good, I can't get over the fact that it can only be used continuously only for one minute in use. Professional? I don't think so.
** General Size - An Advantage? **
What does come across against Morphy Richards 50 watt less all in white model, the 48471 hand blender immediately is the extra height overall. This blender (48473) measures 35cm with the foot locked in against 25cm for the smaller white model. This means that against my own smaller Micromark hand blender which is similar to the white model by MR; this silver model has several advantages. For starters mixing and blending down soup for example when cooking in large pots is a lot easier because of the overall length and the fact that the detachable foot does have a seal before the motor.
The foot on this blender is also larger to what I am used to, but the downside being that it can splash out more liquid in wider cups and mixing bowls because of it and thanks to the open apertures which allow air in whilst blending, not many food particles get stuck - but have a tendency to fly out everywhere unless you use a close beaker, jug or bowl with a narrow opening and general diameter.
One aspect which needs to be mentioned here is the how to lock the stainless steel blade foot to the rest of the hand blender. The first time I tried this I was initially confused as to where the lock goes. For example, there are two logos on the sides of the detachable foot which clearly shows which way it should be turned to lock and unlock. By the warning and motor plate located at the side of the hand blender part, there is a small grey arrow which conveys where the lock icon on the detachable foot should meet. But! They don't meet at all - infact the lockable foot can be locked into position when the arrows on the logos meet with the seams either side of the hand blender and not the arrows aligned together. That's very clever Morphy Richards; NOT!
And there are a few other quirky downsides to mention:
The instruction manual is useless as to stating what this blender can do and cannot do. There are only safety "common sense" guidelines as to how to protect the blender and safety warnings. For example I don't know if the blade can crush ice, but I do know not to place the blender into pots of food when food is being cooked. Don't assume here that Morphy Richards so called expertise means that this hand blender can be used for more than a minute - it can't. If you try, the motor runs down and cuts out and you have to wait five minutes for it to cool down.
There are no indications on whether the foot is dishwasher safe. I have since put the foot in a dishwasher to see if it would fare well and it seems to be okay. Although it is stainless steel, the manual suggests the usual - hot soapy water.
Another problem is the weight of this hand blender - It is a heavy unit thanks to the fact that it is a lot taller and wider than most hand blenders on the market. Thanks also to its brushed stainless steel effect on the hand held part, it is not gripped and my hand can slip from holding it.
The detachable lock labelling is very confusing on the body of the blender. MR need to improve the detailing on this blender to avoid any consumer finding that the detachable foot slips off during prep tasks. (Yes, it happened to me whilst trying to make a banana smoothie)
** General Clean Up **
As I stated previously the stainless steel blade and foot can be washed in soapy hot water; that's all very well after use. During use however finger marks show up really easily on the brushed metal effect and I guess if you are a professional in the kitchen you will either love or loathe this fact. If you don't like finger prints, then you have picked the wrong hand blender. If anything like flour or food stains do get on the top half of the blender, just wipe it away with a semi dry/damp cloth.
And so at the end of the day, when all is said and done to my mind, this isn't a well thought out hand blender. It doesn't shout "Professional" for all that it has been built in metal with a stainless steel blade attachment. The manual is poor, the lock mechanism icons are confusing, the motor vibrations are easily felt and all in all, it has not been designed for long continual use.
In short, it looks amazing and it looks professional and for some that may well be all that matters. Sadly though in use, its limitations are just far too obvious despite its size and despite the name, Morphy Richards should rename it and place it in a range which shouts fashion rather than proper function.
Given that the cheaper white model is around £10-00 what you are paying the extra £7 for is the plastic beaker and the metal effect from a company who offer budget household appliances, and for that fact alone this "Hardware" blender on price is harder to justify. Be thankful you're not stuck with it! Thanks for reading. ©Nar2 2007
Model: Kitchen Hardware Hand blender 48473
With no jugs or attachments to worry about, the Morphy Richards 48473 Kitchen Hardware Hand Blender is a portable and fuss-free tool that can be used with suitable kitchen bowl / It has a high quality brushed chrome finish, and a hardwearing stainless steel leg that is easy to clean / This hand blender packs enough power for the toughest blending jobs / Short name: Morphy Richards 48473