* Prices may differ from that shown
As my partner's a chef we do lots of cooking in our house so we seem to have all manner of things in the kitchen cupboards to make cooking a little easier. About two years ago I bought this Sabichi hand mixer from Amazon, at the time it only cost about £10 delivered which is a really cheap price and is all I wanted to pay really as I knew our hand mixer would only be used occasionally as we do have a bigger stand mixer but it's a bit of a nuisance to get it out just for a quick use. At the moment it costs just under £12 and is available from a few different sellers most of which offer free delivery.
The mixer is very basic and easy to use straight out of the box, my beating whisks were already in my machine so for me it was just a case of turning it on at the plug and I was ready to go. The mixer only has two buttons which makes it really simple to use, and although it comes with instructions I doubt that anybody would need them. There's a large eject button which you press in the release the beating whisks from the machine to enable you to wash them and there's also a sliding button to control the speed of the mixer which ranges from one to five. The mixer is very compact and very easy to store away, mine is white plastic unlike the picture above but it still looks quite modern, as this goes away after using I'm not too bothered anyway and for the small price I have no complaints.
The first thing I noticed when I came to use this hand mixer was that the power cable is only quite short, as I only have a few plug sockets in my kitchen this did limit me a bit but it wasn't a huge issue. The mixer is quite light weight and I should imagine could be used by pretty much anybody both young and old. As I mentioned before the hand mixer is really easy to use, the sliding button to control the speed is actually on the handle making it really easy to adjust whilst the machine is in use. I tend to start off slowly and build the speed up and once the machine gets going it's not too bad at all. Obviously it's not the most powerful machine going but it does the simple tasks which I bought it for such as making cake mixture, whipping cream etc. The beaters are easy to take off the machine and easy to wash, they can be put in the dishwasher but I give them a quick wash by hand and they're still as good as new. To connect them back to the mixer again it's just a case of pushing them into place and waiting for the click, and the eject button pops out. After two years of use this hand mixer works as good as ever and I probably use it at least once a week.
Overall, if you're looking for a basic, no frills hand mixer which does the basic jobs in the kitchen then look no further. The Sabichi hand mixer is easy to use, lightweight and always gets the job done. It's not as powerful as the more expensive brands but I bought this hand mixer for everyday simple tasks like whipping cream and making cakes and for that this machine works really well.
I bought this mixer from Wilkinson's for about £5 five years ago when I first moved up to Leeds and wanted to start baking again (however, the price has gone up a little since then).
***What you get***
Well this is a pretty basic hand mixer but it does everything I need. My mixer came with two dough hooks (although I must confess I have never used them as I just can't get the dough right and I prefer to make bread by hand anyway) and two standard whisks attachments which is what I bought it for.
My mixer is white plastic but because it is such a compact design it fits nicely in the cupboard without taking up much space (so important when space is at a premium). However, I do find that it can get quite grubby looking but that is going to happen with every mixer as I use it for baking and cake mixture tends to get everywhere (or maybe I am just a very messy baker). That said it is very easy to clean the mixer as I just use a damp cloth and it gets rid of any debris etc and the mixer is still white despite being used for about five years.
There are five separate speeds on my mixer (and a turbo booster which is handy when you want to finish whisking something tough) which works well for my needs. I tend to use the mixer on full whack as I am a bit impatient and it works well (my cakes are always light and fluffy) although if you are not careful at that speed the cake mixture could fly everywhere so I start on a low setting and turn it up.
There is also a release button so you can clean the beaters and that's it really. Fitting the beaters is also really easy as they just slot into place (well with a little push anyway). Cleaning the beater s is also fine as you can either wash them by hand or pop them in the dishwasher I have done both and there is no sign of erosion or degradation at all.
The price has gone up a bit in recent years but at about £8-£9 it's a good deal especially if it lasts as long as mine has and after five years there is no sign of it giving up the ghost (touch wood).
This mixer is marketed as a basic hand mixer, with five speed settings and no further frills than that, and it is priced accordingly, around £10 on Amazon (October 2013).
The look of the mixer is pleasing to the eye, it's made of hard, shiny plastic - mine's white, but it's also available in red or black, with chrome beaters. It has a very simple rounded design, with just two buttons at the front edge of the handle - one to push down to release the beaters, and the other one to slide side-to-side to adjust the speed. There are little numbers above the speed button to indicate what current setting you are using. The rear of the mixer is vented with small holes, and there is also a small area of venting at the front. The overall dimensions of the mixer are 13x18x 8cm and the beaters are 13cm when mounted into the unit.
Feel & Use
The mixer weighs 570g, which in use feels very light indeed. The handle is rounded and smooth, so using the mixer is a comfortable and relatively effortless operation. The speed/power is very easy to adjust, and the push-to-release button requires a firm push but is not difficult. The cord is just over a metre long which I find more than enough to enable free mixing without a length of cord flailing loose. The length of the beaters is the only thing I have a problem with in use. At 13cm, of which 9cm is the actual beater head, they are quite short, and it means a slight restriction in your choice of mixing bowl - nothing too narrow and deep.
The size of the motor in the mixer is 100W, so it's important to bear in mind that this is never going to be a heavy-duty mixer. I wouldn't like to try and mix a Christmas cake with it, for instance. For normal sponge mixing, however, it's great.
The beauty of such a small mixer is the amount of space it takes up storage-wise. We still keep ours in its box, which is 18x20x10cm in size so it fits in a small space on a wall cupboard shelf, complete with its beaters ready for use next time.
Cleaning and Wear & Tear
The mixer gets an outing almost every week, and after a year and a half it's showing no signs of any mechanical problems*. It still looks good as new due to the material from which it's made, it's reliable, and the beaters wash beautifully and are still shiny. The mixer itself just gets a wipe down after use, and we use a brush to dust down the vented areas. The only sign of its age is that the tiny grey numbers indicating speed have slightly worn off and will be completely gone long before the mixer gives up.
*until a couple of weeks later.
Edit: 28/10/13 I seem to have put a curse on the mixer, as it started to make an unholy rattle when in use yesterday and one of the beaters is only going round periodically. It seems my optimism for its longevity were a bit premature. Even in terms of the low price, I think this mixer should have lasted longer considering that it's only ever faced with a light sponge mixture. My partner is keen to buy another one, he says it was cheap so it's fair enough, but I don't necessarily agree, I will (and I think I'd advise) put the £10 towards a more expensive model.
A disappointing afternote, and I have to mark down to 3 stars.
My enjoyment of baking comes from my love of eating! Ive always had a sweet tooth from young, and this hasn't diminished at all over the years. When growing up, my dad was the baker in the house. One of the many things he used to bake was a birthday cake for me every year, which normally was fruit filled and iced in quite a free spirited manner, ( messy! ) multi coloured but just as delicious as it was creative! These strong memories stayed with me through adult hood and since then Ive always baked and miss the act of it when I don't get the chance to do it. I bought this particular hand mixer sometime back for £4.99 from a catalogue store called 24studio.
Why did I buy this?
I bought a hand blender from the same brand at the time I purchased this, and thought that this would come in very handy when making cakes. Ive always been a ' making cakes by hand ' person, but for the price this cost, I hoped this would make the preparation process a lot quicker and easier.
How does it look?
Its black in colour with a shiny look and texture to it, quite small and compact. If you look down at the appliance from an aerial angle, you will see there are two buttons. The first button at the top closer to the end of the hand mixer, protrudes quite abit, grey in colour and has the word 'eject 'above it. Press this button down, and it releases the beaters ( two chrome beaters that are placed in the two holes on the underside of the hand mixer-6.5 inches long. To put into the mixer, simply push in until clicked ). The other button is a sliding one, again grey in colour, and this adjusts the speed and goes up from 1-5.
The buttons are actually on the handle of the mixer, which provides a comfortable area to hold this while its in operation.
The hand mixer itself is quite light weight, not heavy nor bulky in feel or look.
Corded, so requires to be plugged into an electrical plug socket to use. Cord length is 30 inches.
Length of hand mixer is 6.5 inches, width just over 3 inches long.
How have I used it?
Despite my love and slight addiction for watching ' The Great British Bake Off ', I have to say that Im a very boring baker! I stick to what I know, and then inject a different twist along the way to make recipes a little more interesting. Do I make meringues? No. Do I make soufflés? No. Do I make decent and tasty cakes? Yes.
Examples of my boring bake offs
1. Blueberry and white chocolate muffins
2. Chocolate cake
4. Banana cake
5. Milk chocolate and banana muffins
6. Double chocolate muffins
7. Raisin and cinnamon sponge pudding
8. Yorkshire puddings/pancakes
Im no cake decorator Im afraid.I have all the ideas floating around in my head, but for some reason they don't translate very well in real life on my baked treats. So I stick to simple icing whether that would be butter cream or using normal icing sugar. Both have been made using this hand mixer. Here are some examples of my simple but tasty toppings.
1. Peppermint icing (makes a plain vanilla cupcake/muffin sponge alittle different ).
2. Raspberry buttercream ( to die for, piped on the top of white chocolate chip muffins! )
3. Chocolate buttercream ( if you want to develop diabetes pipe this on top of a large brownie. I did this for my partner as a surprise )
4. Chocolate icing
5. Plain icing from icing sugar ( probably one of the best to make and pop on the top of cupcakes and allow the kids to throw on all kinds of weird and wonderful edible delights-edible footballs, smarties, buttons, sprinkles etc. If no colour is added, the brighter the decoration the better! ).
How have a found it?
Firstly, the look although very simple and basic is quite nice due to the black shiny exterior. It appears so small and compact that theres an element of it looking quite cute and travel like. On the same point, I pop this in a drawer so very easy to store away and takes up very little space. No hook or loop on applaice, so cant be hung up on a wall, hanger etc.
Since this has very limited functions, its very easy to use so once out of the box so you don't have to think about how to use it, you just do.
The cord length for me could be a touch longer. Despite having quite afew plug sockets in my kitchen, I tend to find I have just about enough length but having more would be better for my own needs.
Despite the 5 speed function, I don't feel this has enough power in it. If the mixture Im working on is quite dense and less fluid compared to say for instance a pancake mix, even on the high speed it feels like it really has to work it, and you hear it trying to keep up with it and theres a slight churning feel to it. You can even see the beaters really slowing down at this stage. I don't think this is one of those items that can be run for long periods of time, but in short bursts. It just doesn't appear to have that type of longevity.
I feel it could mix the batters alittle more effectively. Sometimes I feel I have to give it a hand ( literally ) by stopping once or twice and giving it a stir. But you would expect to do that especially where the mix is at the bottom of the bowl to make sure all dry ingredients have disappeared.
It does provide a decent light and airy batter, which is what you want. And the mixtures tend to look shiny and very smooth.
I wouldn't feel confident making a batter that contained lots of dry, larger particle based ingredients, such as dried fruit with this. I think that would make the machine work harder and slowly and could easily be done by hand.
Noise wise its not too bad. Obviously it makes some noise but Ive heard much louder and worse, so very acceptable.
Its not too hard to clean and requires a wipe with a damp cloth after use.
On a more positive note, considering the cost of this, its still working and Ive had this for some time now. Its still in a good condition in regards to looks and its actual workings and it's never been faulty or caused me major issues. Very durable.
Who is a hand mixer for ( in general-not just this one! )
Someone who enjoys baking but doesn't have much space for a huge appliance, like a food processer/mixer like a Kenwood. Or those who simply don't have a huge budget on such an appliance and need a much cheaper alternative.
Maybe a cook/baker, who has issues with their hands and finds it difficult to whip, beat, mix etc because of this, but have no problems being able to press a button to use appliance. or hold this for short lengths of time.
Nice introduction for slightly older kids who are interested in baking, or even younger kids but obviously with adult supervision. Most children naturally love cooking things in general, but they find the making bit the best. Nothing like a little machine that makes noise, turns batter around and around and for them to have control of it in their little hands! But caution needs to be applied.
Someone who needs an appliance to have basic functions as they simply don't use it for a hundred and one things or uses very often.
Who is THIS hand mixer not for?
Someone who needs their hand mixer to have more variation in regards to speeds or a higher speed/more powerful action in general because of the type of things they bake.
Somebody who is abit of a kitchen gadget freak-this simply wont press all their buttons!
Potentially a more experienced baker and someone who bakes regularly. This could still do the jobs required from such a person, but I suspect they would be alittle frustrated with this item due to it being the basic of basics.
Would I buy this again? If I had the same poor and small budget I had when I first bought this, then I would. It did what I needed to do which is help mix batters and cake mixtures, but I feel its too limiting in function for me, the power was lacking and to be honest Ive found it much easier, quicker and better to simply make what I want to make by hand. So if I chose the traditional hand method over this, then this hasn't made my life in the kitchen that easier.
Great little starter item but Im slowly outgrowing this.