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Best Kitchen Appliance you will ever Own
on May 27, 2013
I purchased this for my wife last Christmas. Like many home appliances, it promises to be the most wonderful thing ever. Unlike every other kitchen appliance I have ever given or received as a gift, this one actually IS the best kitchen appliance you will ever own.
Simply put, this appliance makes baking a breeze. Breads, pizza dough(!) and cookies are immensely simple to make using a stand mixer. Where the gadget really shines is making dough. Using the dough hook attachment, the appliance does all the mixing and kneading for you. It's fun to use and it's perfect every time. It's simple, it's easy, and it's basically full-proof.
We use our stand-mixer twice a week, at least once for making pizza dough and one other time for bread or some other home-baked item on the weekend. My wife, who was never very confident in the kitchen is now able to make bread and other scratch baked goods with ease. Her pizza dough is kick-ass using this stand mixer.
I express no opinion on all the esoteric attachments for this device as I have as yet to try them. But the basics are what you really want it for -- and it delivers on what it promises, in spades.
Construction is sturdy as all hell and the fire engine red paint job is attractive. The build of this appliance simply oozes quality. It's all metal, very heavy, with a glossy smooth "new car" finish to the paint. It cleans very easily.
The only downside to the construction of the item is that this is an appliance you really want some counter space for. It's very heavy and you will not be wanting to dig this out of a cupboard for use and then want to put it away; it's just too heavy to be moved around conveniently like that. What you want is to put the thing in its corner of the counter and drag it out for use and then slide it back into its corner afterwards. The fact that the appliance is so attractive sitting on the counter makes that a practical choice - but you will need the counter space in order to do that.
The plastic lid on this model is not really necessary and sometimes can get in the way. I would prefer to accept that some flour flying around the work area of your kitchen is somewhat inevitable using a stand-mixer, so accept that and take the plastic lid off your mixer and out of your way. The handle on the mixing bowl on this particular model, however, is very handy and makes using the appliance somewhat easier. If you have a choice to get one with or without the handle on the bowl? Take the handle, every time. (Throw the plastic lid on a cupboard).
My mother never had a stand mixer growing up so I did not realize how indispensable one of these things would really prove to be. A+ kitchen appliance. Easily the best thing I ever bought off of Amazon.
[EDIT: It's now been more than two years since I first wrote this review in May 2013. Our stand-mixer broke within the warranty period when I was making a very heavy dough for Thanksgiving. I am not sure if it was my fault, but my dough density didn't help. Kitchen-Aid replaced it immediately and there was no fuss at all. I had a new replacement on my counter in three days. I do want to point out, however, that my thought when it broke was not "oh what a piece of expensive crap"; rather, it was a feeling of "oh crap, what are we going to do without our stand-mixer!" Yes, they replaced it without a quibble. But if they had not, I would still have bought a new one without a *moment* of hesitation. It's that useful to us.
We have over the past three years acquired a large number of attachments for this device. The most useful is the grater/slicer, which used to be a lot cheaper and they nearly doubled the price in early December 2014, which is a shame. Look for it on sale, but it is the "must have" attachment for your stand-mixer. All else comes after that one.
We've also got every pasta attachment for the device, including some that you are not even manufactured anymore. (The fettuccine and ravioli devices are the best pasta gadgets available, imo, but they don't get heavy use.)
Our love for the Kitchen-Aid stand-mixer did not stop there. I have recently purchased a new device for home milling of grains, the "Mockmill" from Germany in May 2015. It's a very cool gadget, superior to the other mill attachments for the Kitchen-Aid stand mixer. I hope Amazon will soon carry it.
Just as important as all the gadgets we have bought for our Kitchen-Aid stand mixer are all the baking and cooking gear we have purchased that are NOT for the stand-mixer. From pizza stones, numerous USA and Wilton pans, La Cloche clay bakers, bakers couches, lame, scales, cookbooks, cake decorating and chocolate making gear - the list goes on and on - and on.
In my view, the manufacturers of those MANY other products owe a significant royalty from every nickel of those sales (and let me tell you, that's a LOT of money by now) to Kitchen-Aid. Without our stand-mixer, there is NO WAY we would have been baking and enjoying how to learn to use all of that gear to create scratch made foods at home. Our stand-mixer gave my wife confidence in the kitchen she never had before to bake -- and that confidence spun-off and has affected her cooking skills, too. I am very, very thankful for that, I promise you. Since 2012, I've bought several of these as gifts to other members of my family since then, too.
Three and a half-years in, and it really is the best kitchen appliance we've ever owned -- and it's not even *close*.]