Coarsely chop assertively flavored ingredients, such as chiles and garlic, before putting them in the processor. If you add them whole, they may not mix in properly and you could end up with an overpowering mouthful.

* Mix dry or chunky pastes by pulsing. Since the blade will send pieces flying, scrape down the sides of the processor frequently to make sure the ingredients are evenly chopped.

* Add mayonnaise and other solid fats to the processor after the other ingredients have been mixed, then pulse just until combined; overworking will cause the sauce to separate. If you're using oil, add it gradually while the machine is running.