The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Assistent Original (aka Magic Mill DLX) really worth it...?

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khaos's picture
khaos

Assistent Original (aka Magic Mill DLX) really worth it...?

Hi everyone.


I currently own a Kenwood KMC560 Premier Chef for kneading my yeast dough (spelt flour and no sourdough). Unfortunately I'm more than unhappy with it for various reasons. Amongst others, it requires my full attention while kneading the dough which works its way up to the mechanics fast and is a pita to clean up afterwards. Besides that, I'm not very impressed with the kneading quality as such.


So I'm looking for a replacement and read a lot of posts and a lot of forums. :-) One thing that usually came up was the great satisfaction with the Assistent Original (aka Magic Mill DLX). Now I am still not sold on the idea of how the machine works/kneads. So I'd look to ask straigh ahead: Is it really that great? I usually knead the ingredients together by machine for 1-2 minutes until they are sufficiently mixed and let the dough rest for 30-45 minutes (autolyze) and continue by adding some small amount of water and all of the salt (amongst other things). I'll let the machine knead until the dough has reached a medium to well developed state depending on what I want. So my doubts are with the second stage. Does the kneading of the Assistent really manage to mix all the salt uniformly into the dough after the autolyze if I use the dough hook or the roller for example? This hasn't been a problem with the KMC560- one of the very few upsides of that machine.


By the way, due to health issues, I only use spelt flour which results in a somewhat more sticky dough which is more prone to over-kneading. Would this be okay for the Assistent? And last but not least, I'd throw my two batches together once I get the Assistent and make just one batch with somewhat around 2,4kg of spelt flour and approx. 70% hydration. That would save me time and work. Would that amount be managable for Assistent?


I'd appreciate any input. I burnt a lot of money on the KMC560 and that's even worth considering I am a student and always low on funds. :-) So I'm very cautious not to make the same mistake again.


Thanks again in advance.


So long,
matthew from Germany

AnnaInMD's picture
AnnaInMD
Chuck's picture
Chuck

Mechanical help can be invaluable for some of us oldsters and others with physical issues, and for making tens of loaves all at once. But if you don't fall into one of those categories, you may not need anything at all.


It seems to me that a first-rate mixer will cost at least a few hundred dollars and a first-rate kneader will cost many hundreds of dollars. But for making artisan-style breads with techniques like autolyse, French fold, and stretch and fold, mechanical help may not even be particularly useful.


SteveB's website has some musings on mixing that you may find helpful.

Swede's picture
Swede

Hi Matthew (and everyone else),


I have used an Assistent Original (www.assistent.nu) for a few years and I am really satisfied. The machine is strong, silent and gives a feeling of very good quality. In Sweden, where I live, this is a very well known product and it usually gets best in test.


Mainly I make bread that needs a long time of kneeding, so I let the machine kneed the dough for up to 20 minutes. To kneed a 3 kg (6 lb) dough for that long you need a strong machine with a good capacity and the Assistent does it with pleasure. The machine has a capacity of up to 5 kg (10 lb) and the bowl is 7 litres (8 qt).


There are lots of different attachment to the machine as well and I could really recommend the mincer.

naschol's picture
naschol

The DLX is the greatest for bread!  It kneads very thoroughly, even big batches of whole grain breads, without any show of strain at all.


 


 

khaos's picture
khaos

Hi everyone.


Thanks for all the input/advice. After I had a long and very friendly talk with the manufacturer of the Assistent, I decided to give the machine a try- especially after I tried the Bosch MUM86 which broke down on me after 2 weeks with a gear defect (plastic gears) even though I stayed away from its maximum capacity and make only very soft doughs...


Well, unfortunately I ran into a problem with the Assistent. I usually mix the flour and the water together and let it rest for 45min, so the the flour has a chance to really absorb the water (autolysis). When I was done mixing (which at first made a total mess- but I managed and found my error), I discovered "black residue" on the dough scraper's "blade/edge" that  is scraping the dough/flour from the bowl. Naturally that also mixed its way into the dough. Suffice it to say that I was not at all happy about it and unsettled due to my allergies which left me with no choice but to throw the dough away.


We thoroughly washed all parts by hand before first use. The bowl we even washed twice because it had what looked like "water spots" from the get go so we wanted to be sure that everything was clean. And to the eye, everything looked clean...


Has anyone else had this "black residue" or any idea what it could have been and how I can prevent such a thing from happening again? I mean I'm also allergic to nickel which is unfortunately a part of 18/10 stainless steel but that was never a problem since the steel should never get scratched off and make its way into the prepared dough/meal.


If anyone has any ideas or knows something about this,  I'd really appreciate it if (s)he could share it with me...


Thanks a lot in advance...


So long,
matthew

Grampa Knuckles's picture
Grampa Knuckles

Hi, I am guessing your Assistent is new.  Hopefully by now the problem is solved.  Mine did the same thing when I got it.  What I did is just mix together water and flour  into a loose batter and let it whip at high speed for several minutes, that seemed to clean everything out and likely cost less than $1.00. Better than losing a batch of something delicious. After that other than getting a few kinks out of new recipes the Assistent puts to shame any other mixer on the market.  Unfortunately they are hard to find.  Not sure why more dealers dont carry them.  Till recently they were nearly impossible to purchase in Canada, now at least you can get them here.  Good luck and I am sure your oil problem has been solved but hopefully this will help someone else.

ReenMaggie's picture
ReenMaggie

Just want to say thank you for this little tidbit of info as I just bought my Assistent today and have not used it yet. I will definately do the water and flour thing before making any serious recipes with my new machine. So glad I found this site and these postings.