I have been using my Cuisinart as if it were a blender recently to make granita-like ice concoctions. I freeze some liquid (eg green tea, chai, coffee), then defrost it slightly and break it up into small chunks with an icepick. Then I put the chunks, plus other components (milk, dry milk powder, sugar, fruit, ginger, mint, citrus zest, cocoa, rum--not all at once of course) into the Cuisinart and process for several minutes until a thick, creamy-icy, quasi-sorbet has formed, which I spoon into a tall glass and eat/slurp.
I'm using the Cuisinart because my blender won't crush ice (I need to get a higher-powered blender, I know). But am I thoughtlessly stressing the motor, or maybe dulling the blade?