November 17, 2009 - 11:35am
Bosch Universal/Universal Plus users in New York City + environs
Are there any Bosch Universal users in New York City who wouldn't mind giving their thoughts to a Manhattanite who is conisdering one but can't find a place to even see these in action? videos posted by salespeople aren't too helpful - more interested in knowing versatility, etc for Manhattan-apartmennt-sized quantities of food including whipped cream + cookies. Thanks!
But I did own a Bosch Universal...emphasis on the word "did." I have a KitchenAid Pro 600 and also had the Bosch. To be honest. the Bosch took up way too much counter space and wasn't nearly as handy as the KA for routine tasks (whipped cream, cookies, etc). Let it be said that I have a family of 8 and I found the Bosch was only really useful when I made a double recipe of a whole grain bread. For anything else I used the KA. I sold the Bosch and have never regretted it. I have a huge kitchen, but it wasn't worth keeping the Bosch.
Hope this helps.
Thank you Ria for the really helpful observations - exactly the kind of information that I was after.
I live in a studio apt in Queens. I have a Bosch Compact and recently purchased a Bosch Universal Plus.
My experience with the Compact was totally positive. It is light enough to pick up with one hand and move around. Space it takes up is about 12x12 inches. I have done about everything you can with a basic mixer and it works just fine. I find it works beautifully for up to 3 loaves of bread, more than the KA Pro600.
I got the Universal Plus because I am now mixing bigger batches of bread dough. This mixer is not much heavier than the Compact is, about half the weight of a KA mixer. It takes up a little more room than the Compact and will easily mix the bread dough for 6 loaves of bread with no problem. It will also do anything else I might want to do with a mixer. I bought the cookie paddle option and the basic mixer. Very satisfied with both of them.
From what I read on the other websites they seem to last almost indefinitely. I read just yesterday a woman who was talking about her Bosch Universal. She was given it for a wedding present in 1978. She and her husband raised a family of 4 kids who are now all grown and married with kids of their own. She milled her own flour and baked 4 loaves of bread twice a week. She is still using that same Bosch and it looks as good as new and will still mix the dough for 4 loaves of bread. Not bad. 31 years and still chugging along just fine. Compare and contrast with the latest KA mixers that give up the ghost if you try to mix more than 3 loaves of bread.
I would ask the other woman what about the mixer took up so much room. I just put mine away in a cabinet when I am done and it is totally out of the way. A lot easier to do that with a 12 lb mixer that you can pick up with one hand than with a mixer that you break your back moving.
Thanks for that info. I wasn't aware there was a compact Bosch and after doing a quick check, saw that the price is certainly reasonable.
Did it do a good job mixing very stiff doughs?
Edited: Never mind about the stiff doughs. According to the Pleasant Hill Grain site, the compact Bosch mixer has been discontinued so the question is moot.
If you look around there are still some of them out there and the service is there as well.
I did a very stiff whole wheat with oats recipe and it worked just fine. After all it is 400 watts which is more than most of the KA mixers. I can look around if you are interested and see who still has some. You might email Pleasant Hill Grain and see if they still have a couple around. Great people to deal with and where I got mine. I had no problem with still doughs at all. My only reason for moving up to the Universal Plus was that I am now starting to make bigger batches than before. The Compact is great for up to 3 loaves but then it is a little too small for that.
Check Amazon. They still have some and there are a lot of reviews there as well. Definitely worth checking out.
I have both and use them for different things. The KA Pro is quite tall and doesn't fit under my cabinets. It also doesn't mix as thoroughly as the Bosch Universal does. The Bosch can handle much more heavy dough than the KA can and I run it all day when I bake for the market. I make as much as 50 loaves of bread in it in a day plus double batches of other things and it keeps going strong. The downside to the Bosch is the spindle in the middle of the bowl which make scraping it a pain but if I could only pick one I would pick the Bosch. It doesn't take up much counter space either and is much lighter than the KA when you move it to clean around it.
I really appreciate the answers here. How about for smaller amounts? The bosch sounds like it's the perfect solution for 3 loaves of bread and upward, but with four speeds and that donut shaped bowl, I get the impression that the paddles would be shooting ingredients around the bowl if I don't cook in quantity. Admittedly, I do mostly bake bread but I'm also thinking about scones and the like. Flourgirl - when do you use your KA? Alan, how many people are you cooking for?
I'm trying a Cuisinart 7 quart now. Definitely has its shortcomings but is essentially a Viking motor and more powerful than the KA that I recently managed to destroy. Timer and DW safe attachments are also nice. It's completely frustrating that isn't local retailer with the Bosch in store - Pleasant Hill is great but their restocking fee is not cheap. I keep seeing myself trying to whip egg whites into soft peaks and winding up with that legendary one and a half cups of meringue ....