“ Hand Mixer / 200 watts / Easy grip handle / 5 speeds / Turbo boost button / Beater ejector button with safety feature / Chrome beaters / Beaters and dough hooks „
As I just moved into my own house, I had to go on a spending spree for household items, namely kitchen appliances. Being a student, I did not want to spend a huge amount of money but wanted a product that would do what was required and would be durable. Despite seeing mixed reviews for the Russel Hobbs basic mixer, I decided to give it a go since it was on offer. I have found it works well and has so far lasted nearly a year, for the £12 I paid, brilliant.
I cannot fault this product, for the price it is and considering it is from the basics range, it blends well on a variety of speeds and the beaters can easily be removed at the push of a button for them to be put into a dishwasher. The appliance itself is white so will fit in in any kitchen and it is small and compact, allowing it to be stored easily.
The only downside is that it is not as stable as some mixers and you can be standing there for a few minutes while your mixture is blended. However, for the price, it cannot be faulted.
Would fully recommend, especially for students learning to cook who have just moved out into their own home.
As a person who considers any lazy Sunday afternoon spent in the kitchen baking as a day well-spent, I get incredibly excited about any opportunity to go out and buy new kitchen appliances. New blender? Got it. New piping bag? Got it. Cupcake corer? Got it. Even if I don't need it, I've got it.
So when my old mixer started to go on the fritz, I practically fell over myself on the way to the shops to get a new one, and as this was a relatively cheap buy and it's specifications looked quite good (five speed settings! Wow!) so I decided to go with this one. Oh, how I regret that now. Never before have I found myself so frustrated with a mere kitchen appliance.
So let's start with the good points. It's powerful. It doesn't take long at all to whip things up - butter and sugar, eggs... it takes half the time that it used to with my old mixer. It's a good price, it won't break the bank. It also looks nice, a tiny bit 'plasticky' but hey, I'm not entering it into a modelling competition here. I use it, wash it and put it back in the cupboard, so that doesn't bother me. It's also really lightweight, but don't think that makes it feel flimsy. It's quite robust and actually, given that I've dropped it (or thrown it in anger) on the floor a number of times, surprisingly sturdy. It mixes quite well also - on my last mixer, the beaters were spaced quite far apart, so that little lumps in your mixture would go right through without getting beaten in, and it would take ages to mix into the right consistency. No problem of that here.
BUT... (and that's a big but) the most frustrating thing about this mixer is the speed. You might be fooled into thinking that since this mixer has five speed settings, they are pretty varied. Let's say - slow, slow to medium, medium, medium to fast, and fast. But no. This mixer has - medium, a little bit faster, and then FAST FAST FAST!
That is not exaggeration. The slowest speed on this mixer is just too fast! Whenever I mix anything, my whole kitchen (including myself) gets absolutely covered in dough, or cake mix, or whatever it is that's in my bowl. And if it's icing sugar you're mixing, then God help you; that stuff gets everywhere. The only way to remedy this a little bit is to use a big bowl, a very big bowl. But even then half the mixture still ends up splattered all over the counter, my recipe book and myself. When it first happened, yeah, I had a little laugh. I was covered in cake mix and it was kind of funny. Now? I nearly cry with frustration.
Another downside is that this mixer only comes with the two beaters and no other attachments. But then, what else can you expect when it's so cheap?
So there you have it. A powerful mixer that's great if you need to want something cheap, study, and that will get the job done in no time at all. But all this is overshadowed by the speed settings. There is just not enough variation. The slowest setting is just too fast, and unless you want half your mixture to end up all over the kitchen, I'd suggest going with something else.
My old kitchen mixer conked out recently, leaving me in a quandary with a pile of half-whipped brownie mix. Still in my pinny, I dashed down to my local supermarket looking for a replacement, and grabbed this product to finish the job.
Unfortunately, my impulse buy did not prove to be a particularly wise one. On the upside, this 200W beater has plenty of power. Whereas my old beater took about 6 minutes to get the eggs for the mix to a reasonably stiff state, this one does it in three. There are five speed settings too, which sounds quite impressive - but the problem is that they're not really very well calibrated so the bottom speed isn't much slower than the top one. The result? The time saving fast beating comes at a cost, namely the festooning of all kitchen surfaces in the vicinity with small pieces of egg. I simply couldn't find a slow enough speed on the machine to prevent splash - and I didn't even dare try the turbo setting. Also, the bowl underneath the mixer got pretty badly punished. I'm glad I was just using an old glass thing, and I wouldn't want to try this with a posher, prettier receptacle.
This also means that the body of the appliance tends to get a bit coated - it needs constant wiping. 'm not a big fan of white mixers with holes in them to ventilate the motor - in my experience, flour and cocoa tend to fly up and clog them up, meaning that the beater either looks horribly dirty or you have to spend ages with a cotton bud cleaning it.
On the other hand, the machine beats smoothly and consistently and it's not that noisy. The chrome beaters are easy to remove and clean, as are the dough hooks. However, the slightly odd shape of the latter means they don't work nearly as well as my standard Kenwood food processor when it comes to kneading and bullying that dough. Given that it cost me about £10, I am satisfied with its performance - it does a good job, and if you're not a madly keen cook and just want to beat the odd cake mix a couple of times a year, it'll see you just fine. In future, though, I'll learn my lesson: shell out a bit more cash if you want to ensure your dough is looked after!