Fresh juice is great for many reasons. Not only is it healthy, but it also makes ordinary drinks like lemonade, orange juice, and various alcoholic mixed drinks taste better than before. Plenty of options exist, but one budget priced juicer that gets the job done as well as the more expensive juicers is the Black and Decker Citrusmate, model CJ525. Let's take a look at this small appliance:
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Juicer Facts and Figures:
The Black and Decker Citrusmate is a small to medium juicing device. It includes a one- liter size pitcher with metric and ounce markings on the sides. It comes complete with two different size cones: one for larger fruit and one for smaller fruit. It is small enough to fit into limited counter space and it includes a cord storage wrap, underneath the juicer, to store the cord and release just enough cord to reach an outlet.
Black and Decker Citrusmate doesn't have an on/off switch. It automatically turns itself on when you take a piece of fruit and press it onto the reamer. The reamer/stirrer turns one direction for the duration of time that you press down. Release the pressure and it stops; apply pressure again and it starts to turn again, in the opposite direction, maximizing the amount of extracted juice.
Black and Decker knows that you sometimes need to take a temporary break while you make juice, so the company included a plastic cover, to keep your juice fresh and free from airborne particles if/when you need to pause during the juicing task and finish up later. The cover has indentions, to make it easy to lift off, and an easy pour spout and handle on the pitcher make it easy to transfer the juice from juicer to glass.
Black and Decker Citrusmate is a simple juicer with everything you need to make fresh, great- tasting juice. This small appliance takes up little space and it produces fresh- squeezed juice for a much lower cost than other juicers.
I have owned electric juicers in the past, but it has been a long time and when I started to shop for a new juicer, I was torn. There are some, like the Jack Lalanne juicer, that offer plenty of bells and whistles and seem very sophisticated. These high- end juicers practically take the piece of fruit from your hands, extract the juice and pulp, and present the peel to you, for disposal. They are certainly more sophisticated and a more serious nutritionist might consider them a very good buy.
However, I decided against these high- end juicers because I reasoned that, based on my frequency of usage and lack of any need for the extras, the expensive juicers were a waste of money. I was led to the Black and Decker Citrusmate when I started to search for a less costly juicer that suited my needs. Based on this criteria, the Black and Decker Citrusmate was easily the top choice in the small appliance lot- not just for the low price, but also for its impressive consumer reviews.
Now that I have used the Black and Decker Citrusmate, I can understand fully why so many people like this juicer and recommend it for your next small appliance purchase. Besides the features already mentioned (cord wrap, one- liter pitcher, two cone sizes, auto reverse reamer), the Black and Decker Citrusmate is nice for many other reasons. It requires little effort to extract the juice and the reamer is just as effective as the more expensive juicers at sucking out every last ounce of juice. Okay, so you have to let go and then press down again to reverse direction and squeeze out more juice, but it won't matter once you get to the end of the task. The pitcher will be filled with juice rather quickly as you move from one piece of fruit to the next.
Another feature I like with this juicer is its operation. It doesn't have an on/off switch and I found this unusual when I used this juicer for the first time. The more I used it, the more I realized that this type of design is really for the better. With an on/off switch, you have to remove one hand away from the piece of fruit in order to move the switch. You would then have to move your hand quickly, back into place, to steady the piece of fruit and squeeze out the juice. You would have to continuously flip the switch back and forth as you extract the juice from multiple pieces of fruit. The way they designed the Black and Decker Citrusmate, there is no worry about messing with a switch. The juicer starts up when a piece of fruit is presented and stops when it is taken away.
Pulp is always an issue with any juicer, and Black and Decker Citrusmate has this area under control. There is no pulp extractor, like you find in the more expensive electric juicers. However, the juicer collects the pulp and seeds in the strainer as you juice your fruit. When you are finished, you can scoop out the amount of pulp you like and add it to the juice itself. Or, if you're not a fan of pulp, you can discard the contents of the strainer and drink your juice pulp- free. This might seem a little on the manual side to some consumers and I felt the same way at first. However, the lack of special pulp extractors help keep the device simple and trouble- free.
Juicers can be a pain to cleanup, but cleaning isn't much problem with the Black and Decker Citrusmate. This is one of the advantages of having fewer bells and whistles- there is less to clean in the end. You have to clean the pitcher at some point, along with the cone and strainer. But this is quite simple and takes little time. The three parts that need cleaning are all dishwasher safe, but it is just as simple to wash them by hand.
Overall, the Black and Decker Citrusmate is a surprisingly good juicer that is offered for a very low price. Based on performance alone, this juicer probably should receive four stars because it isn't the fastest device you can buy. However, when I think about the ridiculously low price (less than $20) and the fact that this juicer is just as effective as small appliances that cost four and five times as much, I am inclined to increase my rating to five stars, and that is what I will do.
Quite simply, it is difficult to beat a small appliance that does what this juicer can do for such a pittance of cash. If you don't own one, get one- your health will thank you further down the road and your wallet will barely notice the difference.
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