The KitchenAid Stand Mixer: the appliance I have learned to love.
Jan 7, 2009
Review by njchicaa
Rated a Very Helpful Review
When my sister and cousin chipped in to buy us a KitchenAid Classic Stand Mixer for Christmas a few years ago, I politely thanked them and secretly wondered what the heck I was going to do with the thing. I was a novice cook and certainly not interested in trying to bake anything. For about a year, my KitchenAid Mixer collected dust on the counter...
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...and then my husband and I decided to try to make homemade pizza one night. Suddenly we had a use for this stand mixer! One pizza turned into two turned into making one every Friday night in the fall/winter. Four years later, I love this thing!
About The Kitchen Aid K45SS Classic Stand Mixer
This mixer has a 250 watt motor and a 4.5 quart stainless steel mixing bowl. It comes with three attachments: a wire whip, a flat beater, and a dough hook. The wire whip is used for things that need air incorporated into them like eggs, egg whites, and heavy cream. The flat beater is for normal to heavy mixtures like cake/cookie dough, biscuits, pie pastry, quick breads, and mashed potatoes. The dough hook is for yeast doughs such as breads, rolls, coffee cake, and pizza dough.
The top part of this mixer tilts back to allow you to inspect the contents of the bowl, switch attachments, or clean the underside. The owner's manual states that you should clean the main part of the product with a damp cloth. It also specifically states that you should not use household or commercial cleaners. The stainless steel bowl, flat beater, and dough hook are dishwasher-safe, but the wire whip is not and must be hand-washed and dried immediately after use.
There are ten mixing speeds on this machine:
STIR--for slow stirring, combining, and starting all mixing
2--for slow mixing, mashing potatoes, cutting shortening into flour, mixing thin batters, and kneading dough (SLOW MIXING)
4--for cookie batters, making meringue, and preparing cake mixes (MIXING, BEATING)
6--for creaming, and finishing cake batters (BEATING, CREAMING)
8--for whipping cream or egg whites (FAST BEATING, WHIPPING)
10--for whipping small amounts of cream or egg whites (FAST WHIPPING)
If you need a speed that is between the numbered ones, there are little notches that allow you to easily slip into a #3, 5, etc. if that is necessary.
Attachments and Accessories
Aside from the three mixing attachments that come with your KitchenAid, the company has several other optional ones that you can purchase. A quick look at the company site showed that I could buy the following items: food grinder, pasta rollers/cutters, can opener, fruit/veggie strainer, ice cream maker, grain mill, citrus juicer, sausage stuffer, and a slicer/shredder. Prices range from $15 all the way up to $150 or so.
There are other accessories that you can buy for this stand mixer including a pouring shield, extra bowls (including one with a handle), and replacement wire whips, flat beaters, and C-hooks.
KitchenAid offers a one year "hassle-free" limited warranty. Basically, if your stand mixer fails within the first year, the company will arrange to pick up the broken one and replace it with an identical or comparable model. They go even further and state that the replacement mixer will also be covered by the same one year warranty. IMO, that is a pretty impressive policy. Not only are they not going to bother you with service calls, but they also give you another year warranty on the replacement. I don't know of any other company that does that.
Like I said earlier, at first I didn't think I'd have any use for such a serious counter appliance like the KitchenAid Classic Stand Mixer. Once I started to have an interested in cooking and figured it out a bit, I found myself using this product for mashing potatoes, mixing pancake/waffle batter, making pizza dough, mixing up birdie bread batter (corn bread mix, canned pumpkin, shredded veggies, and flax seeds), fresh pasta, and even making my once-a-year batch of walnut ball Christmas cookies. We now use this stand mixer at least once a week and many times even more often than that.
I'm no expert cook, but I still haven't had any big issues with this KitchenAid K45SS Mixer. It is powerful, easy to use, and does exactly what I need it to do. I learned the hard way that the mixing bowl can't hold and mash 6.75 pounds (or even just 5) of potatoes as promised, but at least my husband and I can look back on the experience and laugh. This machine is also large for my small kitchen and limited counter space, but I don't have any room in the cabinets for it and it is simply too heavy to be trotting in and out of the basement on a regular basis. Still, in the grand scheme of things the fact that this KitchenAid Stand Mixer has worked flawlessly for the past 4 years and has helped me to be a better cook seriously outweighs the fact that it takes up valuable counter real estate and might require that you mix things in two batches instead of just one. Heck, I can't even say anything negative about the $250 price tag simply because it is worth every single penny.
Once I tried out my KitchenAid K45SS Classic Mixer, I kept finding new uses for it and discovered that it had become a regular and important part of my cooking routine. It doesn't quite have the capacity that it claims and the price may frighten consumers, but I absolutely love this stand mixer and would buy another one in a second if aliens abducted mine or it self-destructed.
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Amount Paid (US$): gift
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