Gadget goddess Dorie Greenspan writes the monthly column Tools of the Trade for Bon App├ętit magazine. Her article on hand-held blenders appeared in the January 2000 issue.

Williams-Sonoma Stick Blender: a heavy-duty model hefty enough to crush ice but pricey at $99.

Braun Multiquick: Dorie's pick for both performance and price, it's a bargain at $30.

Cuisinart SmartStick: similar to but less powerful than the Braun Multiquick, at $80 it's nearly triple the price.