There was a period of my life that I was crazily into cakes. I would try baking a cake every other day. I loved cakes so much that I would eat a slice everyday or/and bake till the wee hours of midnight after a long day at work. Then not surprisingly my blood sugar level shot up and since then I've had to control my intake of cakes. Saddest day of my life!!
Well during my crazy baking days, I bought a cheap kitchen mixer (Cornell) for $35 if memory doesn't serve me wrong. It served me well in that it got the job done. The only problem was when I tried to mix really sticky dough (like bread dough), the mixer literally jumped up and down on my kitchen counter. The filmsy plastic material vibrated and threatened to give way every time I mixed anything other than liquids.
I told my husband I needed a better kitchen mixer. When a lady talks about a kitchen mixer, the first thought that comes to her mind is usually the very pretty Kitchenaid, with its myriad of colours to suit any kitchen theme. I swooned over it every time I saw it at the major departmental stores. Funnily, the price seemed to fluctuate depending on colours and location. I realised later that different locations have different colours that are offered at special prices (as told to me by the saleslady). My favourite colour is yellow, so when I saw it going for $699 at Vivocity Tangs, my husband grabbed it for me as my early Christmas present.
It's been almost a year and how has my Kitchenaid fare? The finish of the metal is excellent and with its sturdy material, it holds its weight no matter what I make. But with me having to cut down on my sugar intake, my baking activities has since dropped and my Kitchenaid seems to only sit pretty on my countertop. Make no mistake about that though. Every time I look at it, I feel like I'm falling in love with it all over again.
The truth is, sometimes I do feel like this is a superficial love.
Before getting myself a Kitchenaid, I did do my research on the Kitchenaid and its benefits. The truth was there were much debate over the Kitchenaid vs Kenwood and many bakers extolled the functionality and performance of the Kenwood mixer. I have a friend who's a professional baker and she noted that as much as she loved her Kitchenaid, it gave way after less than a year of intense daily baking. She also noted that she had to service her Kitchenaid many times and she advised me to consider a Kenwood kitchen mixer instead. She noted that if considering a Kitchenaid, one could look at the Kitchenaid Professional 600 series. She strongly advised me to look at the Kenwood Chef series (not the Kmix because of its weaker motor) but me being the foolhardy person I am, went ahead with the Kitchenaid.
I have nothing bad to say about the Kitchenaid, but I must admit the price of its add-on attachments are exorbitant. Compare this to the more reasonable and wide range of Kenwood Chef attachments, and this makes me feel like kicking myself. With the Kenwood Chef you can use it as a food processor and juicer but make no mistake, Kitchenaid has been diligently adding to its range of attachments releasing the food processor and juicer attachment recently. However, the Kenwood Chef's prices are much more reasonable. Still, the Kitchenaid Professional only has a 575 watts motor compared to Kenwood Premier Chef's 1000 watts motor (the basic Kitchenaid Artisan series only has a 325 watts motor).
It does seem like this debate on Kitchenaid vs Kenwood kitchen mixers will never end. Many reviews online lament the diminishing quality of both the Kitchenaid and Kenwood kitchen mixers, compared to our mothers' time where both were seemingly more durable. Online reviews note that the motor power and strength of the attachments have been reduced as the kitchen mixers used to be so strong that when accidents occurred, they were often very serious. Hence to avoid lengthy and arduous lawsuits, the strength of the kitchen mixers have been adjusted for consumer safety.
Many ladies would say that the weight of a good kitchen mixer would not make it feasible to shift it around for storage, hence the importance of a beautiful looking kitchen mixer as it will be publicly displayed on the kitchen counter at all times.
My sense? Kenwood definitely has much more functionality and features, which is available at a more competitive price than the Kitchenaid, with its only downfall being its mediocre, normal and metallic looks (don't get mixed up with the colourful Kmix series). If you can calm your fluttering and superficial heart, and convince yourself to look at character and substance beyond looks, my take is go for Kenwood Chef series.
Here's an infographic to round up the comparisons: Kitchenaid vs Kenwood! (See below for pictures on Kitchenaid Artisan Majestic Yellow and Kenwood Premier Chef KMC570)
The Kitchenaid Artisan Kitchen Mixer in Majestic Yellow (retailing for $829 at Courts now, normal retail price is $988)
Kenwood Premier Chef KMC570 (retailing for $599 at Courts now, normal retail price is $799)