“ Brand: Asda / Type: Hand Mixer „
Having burnt out our previous mixer, and with a birthday cake to bake, I opted for this cheap offering from asda to get the job done. And that's exactly what it did.
For the price (it cost me £6) it is a very acceptable standard and quality. It's been used about 5 times in the month we've had it, and it does its job to a decent enough standard.
What I will say is that I have no idea how anybody would ever use the higher speeds, I haven't and never will go beyond the third of its 6 speeds, that was more than enough to send icing sugar into the air like a puff of smoke, covering my glasses in the process!! Even the lowest speed setting is plenty quick enough for everything I needed.
I have also noticed that it tends to get very warm if it's kept on for a prolonged period, any more than a couple of minutes. More than once I have had the sweet scent of its motor burning fill my nostrils, as opposed to my cake burning!! I cant imagine it lasting for years, but at £6 I never expected it to.
On the plus side it is neat and tidy, easy to clean and small and compact enough to stick in the back of a cupboard for the periods it isn't in use.
This hand mixer retails at around £10 but is frequently on sale. This made it perfect for us a couple of years ago when we really didn't have much spare cash after moving houses and we didn't really NEED a hand mixer, it was really just for occasional use therefore not constituting a higher investment.
The mixer is made of a wipe-clean white plastic which, although not of the highest quality, still feels pretty durable, I was not worried about it ever breaking whenever I used it or put it in the cupboard for storage. Being a nice smooth plastic makes it very easy to clean too, considering all sorts of food will be flying up and splashing on the mixer this is essential. A quick wipe with a damp cloth will clean it up pretty much perfectly every time!
The mixer comes with different attachments for different types of food. The only one I actually use is the standard whisk attachments which I use to make whipped cream to put on top of strudels and I believe the one also featured in the review picture is for kneading bread (I have never used this so an not sure). The attachments seems very strong and durable. These too are pretty easy to clean and I have found them no more difficult or no easier than any other attachments to hand mixers I have ever used in the past.
What really impressed me with this mixer was the 6 speed feature. The majority of hand mixers I have ever used come with just 2 or maybe 3 speeds and therefore to get such a cheap product with actually more features than the more expensive ones I have used is amazing!
The speeds allow you to control the mixing far better than you can with fewer settings, making the mixer suitable for a wider variety of scenarios. I am sure there is a proper way to use the speeds and you are supposed to use different speeds for different things but generally I start off with the slow speeds and just (depending on what I am making as to whether it is suitable) increase the speed until I get to speed 6 - this way I do not lose half of my ingredients over the edge of the bowl by putting speed 6 into what is essentially a bowl of water-like ingredients, I wait for it to thicken before increasing the speed.
My biggest issue with this hand mixer is that the cable is too short for my liking. I hate wires on any product but a short wire makes it almost unacceptable for me. It restricts movement and unless you are mixing right next to a plug socket, you may really struggle. However, guess they had to save money somewhere, right?
I started Slimming World last July and have spent a lot of time preparing meals from scratch. I am part of a few Facebook groups where members can post their recipes and I tried a few out. Some recommended using an electric hand mixer but I didn't have one and using a fork just didn't give the same results - it only gave me a sore arm! I decided it was about time that I bought a hand mixer/electric whisk. This specific whisk was recommended by my sister so I headed to Asda to buy one.
Model no : XJ-2K256
This hand mixer is supplied in a simple silver box. The box contains the actual unit which needs to be plugged in to an electrical outlet, two whisk attatchments and two dough hooks. The attatchments have stainless steel blades.
This hand mixer has 6 speed options and is said to be perfect for mixing even heavy ingredients. It features a 120watt motor. The user manual is very easy to read and understand. All safety information is given and the following guidelines are recommended for the different speed options.
*Speed 1 - dry ingredients or folding in liquid ingredients
*Speed 2 - creaming, making sauces, quick breads
*Speed 3 - all purpose including cake mixing
*Speed 4 - Batters
*Speed 5 or 6 - whipping cream, mash potatoes or beating egg whites
It is also recommended that you use the mixer for a maximum of 2 minutes at a time before allowing it to rest for 3 minutes. This hand mixer comes with a 1 year warranty.
~Price and Availability~
As you would expect, this hand mixer is exclusive to Asda and is available instore and from www.asda.com. It retails at £9.96 but is currently reduced to £6.00.
When I got this home from Asda, I couldn't wait to try it out. The different attatchments were presented in little plastic bags inside the box. The unit itself is a good size and is made from durable, wipe clean plastic. The unit is quite heavy but comfortable for me to hold though those with issues with their hands may find it a little bulky. There is a good sized handle which comfortable fits my hand though men with extra large hands may find it a bit restrictive.
The unit has ventilation holes to stop it from overheating when in use. The attatchments are very easy to slot into the underside and click into place. The complete unit feels robust and very safe to use. I do find the cable to be a bit on the short side. My plug sockets are under my kitchen units which means I have limited space to use this hand mixer but I do manage with a little bit of movement! The stainless steel attatchments are of a good quality.
I use my hand mixer several times a week and it hasn't let me down yet. It is so easy to use. I have only found need to use the whisking blades as I have a bread maker which does all 'dough' related mixing for me. My sister uses her dough hooks though and isn't keen on them as the dough mix often clogs up the hooks and needs to be removed before she can start again. This is time consuming so I would say this is more suited for whisking activities.
My main use for my hand mixer is whisking up egg whites. I make Slimming World friendly pancakes a few times a week and this involves seperating my egg whites from the yolks, whisking them up and then binding back together with sweetener. This is my new favourite thing to do as the pancakes are absolutely delicious. I have them with fruit and yoghurt for breakfast normally so my hand mixer has been well use for this recipe.
Once I've attatched the whisks and plugged in the unit, I am ready to go. I always use a large, deep bowl or measuring jug for mixing. I wouldn't recommend mixing anything in a shallow container as this may end up messy. In general though, there isn't really any mess caused by whisking stuff up with this hand mixer. The speed changer is very easy to access when in use and practical to operate. It is a little slider which is easy to move along the noted speeds and won't change itself with being moved. The unit will fall over if it is sat on its side but will sit neatly if sat upright normally.
This unit is quite powerful when in use but never becomes a chore to hold it and it is certainly much better to use than a fork! The whisks spin into action very quickly and a light burst of air speeds through the vents keeping the unit cool. The unit is very noisy and this noise increases between the different speed levels so it isn't one to use if the children are in bed. It is important to keep the whisks submerged in the bowl contents whilst in use to avoid splatters.
Performance wise, this hand mixer does an excellent job of mixing most ingredients. I tend to use speed 1 or 2 for a minute before gradually changing to a higher speed for mixing my egg whites. After 2 minutes or so, my egg whites have expanded and a thick, foamy white mixture is formed. I would recommend using speed 6 if you are planning on making meringues with the egg whites as this will allow the mixture to become a little firmer.
I have found this hand mixer to be great for mixing together my cake ingredients (on the rare occasion that I make cakes now) as all the ingredients are dragged through the whisks and blended together well. I do find that I need to make sure my butter is quite soft though. I didn't like mixing butter and icing sugar together to form a frosting. The icing sugar seemed to be too fine and simply formed a cloud of dust and was a little messy.
Whisking up cream is an absolutely breeze with this hand mixer. I tend to use Elmea whipping cream and find that within a few minutes I have a bowl of thick, delicious looking cream which has a perfect whipped consistency. Perfect for having with desserts. I also find this hand mixer to be great for whisking up Angel Delight and really anything that requires an electric mixer. I find that this hand mixer copes well with thick mixtures as well as liquidy mixtures.
Being white, the unit seems to attract marks very easily. I simply give it a wipe over with a damp cloth. The attatchments should be removed from the unit and washed/dried quickly. I find that if I wash them soon after use, any mixture or food comes away from the blades easily and they are left looking clean and new.
This hand mixer is very simple to use and can be stored neatly without taking up a great deal of room. It is very cheap and has made my kitchen tasks quite a bit easier. Fair enough, it doesn't look attractive but mine is stored in the cupboard when not in use so this really doesn't concern me at all.
A great purchase - thanks for reading :)