You guys know I love a shiny new kitchen appliance, but it just doesn't make sense to purchase a Juicero. I love fresh juice as much as the next person who drinks it to feel slightly better about her life choices, but a $US400 ($536) juice squeezer just isn't in the cards.
Photo by bertholf.
This week saw the latest chapter in the utterly wonderful saga of Juicero, the $US400 ($532) juice machine maker that attracted $US120 million ($160 million) in venture capital funding. On Wednesday, a bombshell Bloomberg report exposed the secret that threatened to ruin the company: You can get almost exactly the same juice without the company's expensive press by squeezing their damn bags yourself with the hands God gave you.
Luckily, there are ways you can obtain fresh, somewhat healthful juice without a juicer, little bags, QR codes or even Wi-Fi. Here are my favourites:
Use Your Blender
Blenders are pretty good at extracting liquid from fleshy fruits and vegetables, and this method can be used to make a lot of juice. It takes a little more time and effort than getting a bag out of the fridge but, unless you're super busy helping Captain Orange Crush destroy the fabric of society, you can probably swing it. To make juice using a blender, you will need:
- A blender
- A fine mesh strainer
- A bowl
- A rubber spatula
Place your juicy plant parts in the blender and blend them into a smooth, pulpy liquid. Place the strainer over the bowl, pour the juicy slurry into the strainer, and let it drain for a bit. Press down on the pulp with a rubber spatula to get every last bit of juice out, pour the juice into a drinking receptacle, then drink it.
I've employed this method to make fresh pineapple juice (for pina coladas), fresh cucumber-tomato juice (for Bloody Marys), and honestly not much else. Also, if you plan to make a juice out of more fibrous plant parts — as The Minimalist Baker does here — you might need to add a little liquid, such as water or unfiltered apple juice, to get things moving. (Alternatively, you could also blend the contents of a Juicero bag, although they do NOT want you to open the bag.)
Use a Citrus Reamer
Photo by K.B.R.
If it is citrus juice you crave, then grab a reamer and get to reaming. Just cut the fruit in half to expose the segments, insert the reamer into the centre of the fruit, and twist it around to crush those cellular walls and release the juice. Unless you have one of those reamers with a bowl built in, you'll probably want to do this over some sort of receptacle. You can also use a fork. (Alternatively, you could open up a Juicero bag and mash the contents with a fork. This isn't really an effective way to get juice — it's just something you could do.)
Use Your Hands (or Feet!)
Photo by Brock University.
If we've learned anything from this whole Juicero saga, it's that the good Lord gave us two perfectly good juice squeezers at the end of our arms, four if you count the ones at the end of our legs, which have been used to make grape juice for years. Just grab a fruit, hold it in your hand, and squeeze the sweet nectar directly into your mouth or cup, if you're fancy. (Alternatively, you could do this with Juicero's bags, because it turns out you actually don't need a ton of force to turn mushy fruit into juice.)