Review of the new KitchenAid 7-Qt. Stand Mixer & a Recipe for Cranberry-Chocolate Cookies
My next project was a batch of Cranberry-Chocolate Cookies. These seemed to be fitting for the holiday season. I was very careful to not overbeat the mixture when creaming the butter together with the sugar and other ingredients. It probably did take about half the time as it normally would. These cookies are chock-full of chocolate chips, nuts and cranberries and are especially good when still warm and fresh from the oven! I could have easily doubled or tripled the recipe for these cookies with this mixer. (The recipe for these cookies is below.)
I then decided to prepare a bread recipe that I have never been able to make with my other mixer due to the weight of this particular yeast dough. The recipe is for Rustic Italian Bread and makes 3 large loaves. It begins with a “sponge” (or a starter) and goes through 2 risings and a final proofing before the bread is baked on a baking sheet and then finished on a baking stone to ensure a perfectly crusty and browned loaf.
This recipe was one that called for kneading the dough a total of 8 to 10 minutes. This dough is very stiff, so it is hard to tell when it is the exact time to stop kneading. It seemed to be the right texture at about 6 minutes, so I stopped there. The new KitchenAid 7-Qt. Stand Mixer did a great job with this very stiff dough. I noticed that is slowed down at Speed 2 a few times, indicating just how difficult this dough is, even with a commercial mixer.
The Rustic Italian Bread was a great success and perfect to accompany a huge pan of lasagna for dinner. The texture was even, yet light and airy on the inside and the crust was just a bit crunchy, but still nice and chewy on the outside. It is really difficult to find Italian Bread that you can buy anywhere that comes close to this.
You cannot test a mixer without a great cake recipe, so I chose to make a Bundt cake for our Thanksgiving dessert. This is a large cake and the batter was very dense. Once again, the mixer did an excellent job of thoroughly combining the ingredients. I did use the pouring chute as I was adding ingredients to minimize splatter.
I have been using the beater blades with the rubber scraper on my other mixer, so I was not certain how the regular beater bar would work on this mixer. It seems to do a fine job of incorporating the ingredients. I still suggest that you take a spatula and wipe the bowl down a time or two, just to be certain everything is mixed in properly.
This cake recipe is wonderful for the holiday season, so I will be sharing it with you later this week.
If you are interested in a commercial strength mixer that offers great flexibility (especially combined with the KitchenAid attachments and accessories), this is a perfect choice for a new mixer. It is quiet, strong and versatile and is very attractive on your kitchen counter (especially in the lively cherry red color!).
If you have been a very good boy or girl, maybe Santa will bring you this shiny new Kitchen Aid 7-Qt. Stand Mixer for Christmas this year. 🙂
Disclosure – KitchenAid provided me with this stand mixer for my use and review. If you are interested in purchasing this particular 7-Qt. model, it is available exclusively through Williams-Sonoma.
1/2 cup unsalted butter (4 ounces), slightly softened
3/4 cup (5 5/8 ounces) packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 1/4 cups (5 ounces) King Arthur White Whole Wheat Flour
1 cup (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips or chunks
1 cup (4 ounces) dried cranberries
3/4 cup (3 ounces) chopped pecans or walnuts ( I used walnuts)
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease 2 baking sheets or line with parchment paper.
2. In a large bowl, cream together the butter, sugar, orange juice, vanilla, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
3. Beat in the egg until combined, scrape down the sides and bottom of the mixing bowl. Add the flour, mixing until smooth. Stir in the chocolate chips or chunks, cranberries, and nuts. Drop by tablespoon onto the prepared baking sheets.
4. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, until just beginning to brown around the edges (they won’t look set in the center; that’s okay). Remove from the oven and let cool on the baking sheets.
Recipe is from King Arthur Flour