Now, before you all get all upset about my husband giving me a kitchen appliance for my birthday, he didn't. He actually gave me a gorgeous pair of Frye boots I had been drooling over for some time, but didn't buy because they were stupid-crazy expensive. As it turned out, once they arrived and I tried them on, I didn't like them nearly as much, so I sent them back and ordered this instead, with his blessing. (Yes, it's bright red. Is there a theme here?)
I've always wanted a KitchenAid stand mixer. My mom had one while I was growing up (still in use, and it's 35 years old), and I used it for all sorts of things. But I have a very small kitchen and everything in it has to pull its weight and then some. This mixer has to stay on the counter--it weighs a ton and won't fit in a cabinet. So for many years I've made do with a series of cheap hand mixers.
For the most part, it's been okay. But I like to bake sourdough, and the endless kneading is sort of getting to me. So I've been thinking about a stand mixer for a while. The real tipping point, though, is Younger Son and his love of baking. He's always loved to cook and bake. Even as a preschooler, he would always beg to help in the kitchen. I would sit him on the counter and let him pour in ingredients, or put him on a counter stool and let him make eggs or stir soup.
He's 11 now, and quite competent in the kitchen. He has been our grill master for the past few years, and our cookie maker for a while now. Lately, he has been expanding his repertoire dramatically, which is great. Except that he's not really big enough yet to handle some of the heavy duty mixing on his own, and a hand mixer doesn't work for cookie batter or bread dough. Which means, of course, that I hear, "Mom! Can you give me a hand, here?" a lot more often than I really want to. I figured we'd both really appreciate a heavy duty mixer, for many reasons.
I ordered it from Amazon for an excellent price and it arrived Tuesday evening. Younger Son was thrilled. He immediately called dibs and baked banana bread (a little brown--totally my fault; I sent him to shower and failed to pay attention to the oven):
Then he gave me orders to buy ingredients for a pumpkin cake while he was at school the next day. He's been asking for a bundt pan for some time (how many 11-year-old boys know what a bundt pan is?!), so I got him one as a surprise.
He baked this after school:
Pumpkin cake with cream cheese frosting. Delicious!
Have I mentioned I'm on Atkins? Low carb? No flour or sugar? Yeah. This is torture.