As a keen home baker, I’ve always hankered after a KitchenAid stand mixer, joining a long line of others who have it on their wish list. Seduced by seeing it used on any TV show worth its flour, like the much-loved The Great British Bake Off, and the strong, sturdy vintage design, I jumped at the chance to test one out.
I excitedly took receipt of a stunning Azure Blue Artisan machine (it comes in 24 hues, including the new Kyoto Glow – pictured). The mixer, which is very similar in design to the original American-made 1930s version, came with a 4.8-litre stainless steel bowl, a three-litre bowl that is stored inside the larger one, a whip, flat beater and dough hook.
It was heavy (being made from die-cast metal) – yet, despite this, I was scared of mishandling it; somehow, the tilt-head mechanism felt fragile compared to my multifunctional plastic (and decidedly unsexy) food processor. Once I got the hang of lifting up the head to add in ingredients, fitting the attachments was a piece of cake (excuse the pun).
I decided to make challah. After analysing the instructions and doing various calculations, I worked out how much flour and which, out of the
10 speed settings, I should use to knead it.
Being able to see the dough transforming at close quarters was great, and kneading took no time at all; just two minutes in the KitchenAid is equivalent to 10 to 12 minutes of kneading by hand.
I also used the mixer to make my son’s birthday cake, as well as several others, including the obligatory lockdown banana bread. While testing it, I ate far too much sweet stuff, but it was a real delight to use. And cleaning it was a cinch – quick and without any awkward angles.
The downsides are the expense and the fact food prep accessories, such as pasta-making, processor attachments and meat grinders, have to be purchased separately. However, the mixer is very solid (hence its weight) and durable. The only other drawback is that the mixer is so pleasing on the eye, you won’t want to put it away – so you will need a counter big enough to show it off.
The KitchenAid Artisan 4.8L Tilt-Head Stand Mixer is available from www.kitchenaid.co.uk. The Kyoto Glow is priced at RRP £599.
Alex gives the KitchenAid Artisan 4.8L Tilt-Head Stand Mixer – Four and a half out of 5!
Reviewed by Alex Galbinski
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