Cuisinart has introduced its first stand mixer, designed to give other high-end models a run for their money. Available in 5.5-quart ($350) and 7-quart ($450) bowl capacities, the mixer boasts 12 speeds and comes with the standard attachments— paddle, whisk, and dough hook.
Contributing editor and baking guru Abigail Johnson Dodge put the 7-quart mixer through its paces in her kitchen and found the large machine “surprisingly lightweight.” It did a great job with tasks big (whipping 4 cups of cream) and small (whipping a single cup), thanks to the tapered bowl, which allows the attachments to reach all the way to the bottom and sides. The disadvantage of that shape, Abby found, is that its height and narrow base make it awkward to scrape the sides and scoop out or pour batter from the bowl.
At 800 watts for the 5.5-quart and 1,000 watts for the 7-quart, the Cuisinarts are among the most powerful stand mixers available and easily handled stiff bread dough without hopping around the counter. Unique to the Cuisinart: a 15-minute countdown timer that turns off the mixer after the selected time has elapsed (more of a novelty than a necessity, Abby thought) and a “fold” speed, a slower option that did a good job of incorporating flour into cake batter.
If you’re looking to make a design statement with your mixer, this is your machine. Standing 14-1/2 inches tall (21 inches with the mixer head tilted up) and 15 inches wide, it is slightly smaller than other stand mixers, yet its overall design gives it an impressive appearance. It comes in white or brushed chrome and has three ports for attachments (available separately), including a pasta maker, a blender, and a 3-cup food processor. You can get more information and buy the mixers at Cuisinart.com.