It doesn’t matter if you’ve bought a hand mixer or a stand mixer, it will always be a good investment. Mixing is a tedious task that takes up a lot of arm strength, and not everyone has a baking partner to take turns having a go at it.
An electric mixer is a key item for easier baking in the kitchen. The standard beaters are what people use to whisk and are detachable so that it can be cleaned easily. But did you know that you can get other attachments too?
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Each different attachment has their own different uses that will help speed up their respective mixing processes. So what are they?
1. Standard beater
Used to make your basic cake batters, whips and beaten egg whites. It comes in various shapes and sizes but the wires are evenly spaced to be able to form a perfect circular motion when the mixer is turned on.
Unless you’re trying to make bread, the standard beater is all the average baker will usually need. Even if you were making bread, depending on the recipe, manually kneading doesn’t even take that long. Some people even find it therapeutic.
2. Balloon whisk
Another name for this attachment is a Wire Whisk. It is perfect for integrating air into mixtures such as beaten egg whites and airy mixtures like angel cake batter and whipped cream.
The aggressive wrist motion required for manual whisking can actually sprain your muscles. This is especially worrisome for ingredients such as the previously mentioned beaten egg whites. Beaten egg whites are a fragile leavening agent that deflates easily as the air escapes, so leaving it alone while you rest isn’t really an option.
3. Dough hook
Usually only for stand mixers because of how sticky doughs can become. Dough hooks help to knead your mixture of ingredients into a fully kneaded bread dough.
This is one of the mixer attachments that you’d want the most if you’re into bread making. Kneading dough is one of the most tiring forms of mixing, so much though that it should be considered a form of arm exercise.
For recipes like croissants, there is also the folding of butter into the patry layers after the kneading process. Having a stand mixer with a dough hook to knead the dough for you would really help making sure that you carry out the folding process properly as you won’t be as tired.
4. Flat beater
Also known as a mixer blade, a flat beater is the second most common attachment after the standard beater for stand mixers.
Like the standard beater, it is used for combining normal to heavy mixtures. However, it can be used for thicker mixtures like cookie batter, which the standard beater cannot mix as well.
Flat beaters work best for foods that don’t require a texture like “creamy” or “silky” words that are described in your recipe. However, it should be perfectly fine when the recipe calls for a “smooth mix”.
It is also good for cutting into solid fats like butter or shortening.
5. Fledge edge beater
Also known as a flexi-beater, this attachment is considered as an upgraded form of the flat beater.
This attachment has the same shape as a flat beater, but it will have a rubber or silicone edge on the rim similar to a baking spatula. The edging helps to scrape the sides of your mixing bowl so that any sticky bits gets to be properly mixed into your batter.
6. Blending rod
Used similarly to an immersion blender. Is used to make shakes, soups and smoothies. Blending rods are the rarest of the mixer attachments, and it is only for hand mixers because it must be dipped into the mixture and moved about to make sure that everything is blended properly.
If you don’t have a blender jug yet, it is a great replacement because it can help reduce the amount of equipment you need to wash. It will also help you save space in your cabinets or drawers because you only have to store this slim and narrow mixer attachment with the others.
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While there are plenty of recipes that you can make even with just a stand beater attachment to your mixer, splashing some cash for a few more extra attachments can really help out when baking certain recipes.
When you are a person who is considering investing in a hand mixer or a stand mixer, you’re probably someone that plans to dive deep into making some baked goods from scratch. However, there may be some day where you’d just want to unwind. So if you’d be interested in some low-effort recipes on desserts that always look good, read our article here.