At the risk of dating myself here, I have had a KitchenAid stand mixer for more than 16 years. My wife and I got it as an engagement party gift, as one does. Truth be told, for the first decade-plus of our marriage, the rather large, clunky mixer spent most of its time in a kitchen cabinet. It only saw the light of day to mix up the occasional cake batter or to mix together ingredients for muffins, bread, and other rarely-prepared eats.
Then we started reading up on the thing — it turns out that calling this thing a mixer is akin to calling a Swiss Army Knife a blade. Sure, it mixes, with multiple speeds, the capacity for more than 100 cookies in a single batch of batter, mixer attachments for all types of batter, dough, sauces, and you get it. But if you never use all the other stuff in your Swiss Army Knife – scissors, bottle opener, and corkscrew most often, I’ll wager – you’re doing it wrong. And man were we ever.
See, it’s not really about the accessories that go into the mixing bowl, but rather about all the attachments you can connect to the front of the unit while the bowl is removed. These include a pasta press with the ability to make six different types of pasta, including spaghetti, fusilli, and large macaroni. There’s a slow juicer that can process everything from apples to berries to carrots or even kale. There are multiple blades that can slice, dice, shred, or spiralize. There’s a grain mill, because of course there is. This thing can even be outfitted with a meat grinder or sausage stuffer.
If you love preparing food, be