The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Kitchenaid Artisan Stand Mixer

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hydestone's picture
hydestone

Kitchenaid Artisan Stand Mixer

I recently received a Kitchenaid stand mixer for a birthday present.  I enjoy mixing and kneading dough by hand but like the idea of being able to make the families regular white and wheat sandwich bread for the week using the mixer.  The information provided with the machine is pretty week.


I am wondering if many people use this type of mixer for bread.  If so, I am looking for some recipes and general instructions on how to use it to make sandwich loaves of bread.  Is it really posible to add everything to the bowl, turn it on and return after 10 minutes to a properly mixed and kneaded dough?

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

If you treat it with tender loving care...mixes cakes, cookie batter, makes great meringues and such wonderfully...I use mine sometimes just for the first few minutes to combine/mix the dough, and to knead lightly, just enough to get a moderate gluten formation, resting the dough in the bowl and then removing it to finish with the stretch and folds.  You wouldn't want to mix...say a brioche type dough in your KAAmixer...I had to have gears replaced in mine working it to hard.  It can do the job, if it's not overheated or overworked...I just posted a recent blog with dough I made for 30 pizza's, using my kitchenaid artisan mixer...for only the first mix and light kneading..worked beautifully for 6 batches and it could have handled more...keep your hand on the top to feel if it's getting to warm..if so..turn it off and let it cool.  I did not have to let my motor cool as the batches were done individually...it worked great, I was very happy!


Sylvia 

Postal Grunt's picture
Postal Grunt

There are clips on YouTube that demonstrate using a stand mixer for dough.

alldogz's picture
alldogz

I love my mixer..it isn't the artisan series it is the commercial series with a bigger watt motor...so i am not sure if the same applies, however when kneading, 10 minutes sounds a bit high...between 5 and 7 with dough hook or until the dough hook pulls the dough up onto it and it clears the bowl (and cleans the bowl)...
liquids in bottom help all flour incorporate better...the book that comes with it should explain all that.
Mine was a gift from a guy with an eye on motor capacity because i said it would take a honker to do my biscotti (up until that point all mixed by hand...a tiring experience)..my mixer doesn't even get warm with the biscotti...bread is a snap. good luck ..have fun~

hydestone's picture
hydestone

I've made a few loaves of bread and am not terribly excite about the mixer.  The tilt lock does not seem to hold the head down securely and the motor sometimes whines when it hits resistance.  I plan to return it as I need to attach a ruber band to keep the tile lock held in place.  I am wondering if I should take advantage of the current sales and rebates and get the 600 series mixer with more wattage.  I also feel like the artisan mixer is a bit congested when adding ingredients or scraping the sides.  I wonder if the 600 series has a bit more room to maneuver when adding or scraping.  I notice it has direct drive transmision.  Is this more reliable?

KYHeirloomer's picture
KYHeirloomer

The Artisan is KA's number one selling stand mixer, and for good reason: it's a great genereal purpose mixer, at an affordible price.


However, it does have limitations, and bread making can be one of them. It's fine, for the occasional loaf. But if you do a lot of baking, you need a more heavy-duty machine, particularly if you're going to be doubling recipes, and for whole-grain breads.


When I finally bit the bullet three years ago, and bought a stand mixer, I opted for the Pro 6, and have never regretted it. It can work the densest doughs with nary a struggle. I can, in fact, double typical whole-grain bread recipes and the Pro 6 doesn't hesitate. It has never overheated, never engaged it's automatic clutch saver.


If you shop wisely, even the Pro 6 becomes affordible. I bought mine at Bed Bath and Beyond when it was on sale. KA happened to be offering a rebate that week as well. Add in the 20% off with the BBB coupon, and I actually spent less for the Pro 6 than the Artisan is currently selling for. It worked out at $269.


My normal approach is to use the paddle for initial mixing, then switch to the dough hook for kneading. At no time, with bread dough, should you use more than the 2 setting, or the machine can overheat. With the Artisan there's no maybe about it, you risk burning out the motor.


Although there are many variables (one reason why it's always best to learn by making dough by hand), as a general rule you want to machine knead for half the recommended time in the recipe. That is, if the suggestion is to knead 8 minutes, run the stand mixer 4 minutes on the 2 setting.

hydestone's picture
hydestone

Thanks for the feedback.


Generally, I will make about 4-5 loaves per week plu a few batches of quick breads.  It won't get much use making cakes and frostings.


The Artisan was $299 a Kohl's with a 30% off one item brought it to 210 less the rebate, so it was 180.  The Pro 6 is on sale at Amazon right now with free shipping for 321 less 50 rebate so 271.  Basically, an extra 90 for the Pro 6 or 50% more than the Artisan.


I'd prefer to not spend the extra 90 at this time but want to make the correct decision since I plan to have this for a long time.

denisecensier's picture
denisecensier

I have been making bread for the last 40 years, feeding my family of 8 children, neighbors and friends.  Easily I make 10 loaves a week.  I have always had a Kitchen Aid mixer, recently the Pro 6 was given to me by one of my kids.  My mixer of choice for the last 20 years has been the Magic Mill DLX 2000 Assistant by Electrolux. It is a tough and resilient mixer, and I make 5 loaves at a time.  I use the machine for other things, cookies and some other things, but basically I use the Kitchen aid for pastas, applesauce, cakes cookies, whipping, and I use the DLX for all things bread.  kodiakhealth.com/catalog/product_info.php/products_id/2009. I hope this helps

hydestone's picture
hydestone

This morning I mase some pizza dough with 5 c of APF and the motor was whining and it got a little warm.  I mixed on speed 2 for about 5 minutes.


I just called the store and they will allow me to return my Artisan and buy the Pro 600 and apply a 30% off coupon.  Basically, on sale for 400, less 120 (30% off coupon), less 50 rebate = 230 for the Pro 600 mixer.


THe Artisan would probably be fine but I think I will pony up the few extra bucks and get the P600.

Postal Grunt's picture
Postal Grunt

The Firefox browser has an extension called Invisiblehand. It checks out other website while you are looking at an item you may be considering buying.  As in all Firefox add-ons and apps, you should consider it before you download. While it does seem to work on my computer, the app doesn't find the money I need to buy all those wonderfuls tools and toys I ponder so often.

DonC's picture
DonC

My KA didn't hold up and died,everything I've seen tells me the post-Hobart ones aren't heavy duty enough to use regularly for dough.I got a Bosch and in my opinion,it's way better than the KA,as an industrial electrician,the simple yet elegant design is so much better,no gears/transmission and way,way more powerful.


 If you're stuck with only being able to trade it in for another KA,I'd suggest kneading your dough by hand as you enjoy it and using the mixer for other things.


   Good luck and Merry Christmas!!!!