I need a mixing machine. Mine went with the house and before, with wedding money from my parents, I had a beautiful Bosch mixing machine. It was strong and durable and I really didn’t like it. Why? That annoying and silly center post. I know that is central to making it work but it meant a lot of scraping… and it just wasn’t my thing. (However, MANY bread making folks out there adore it.)
So, after the fire, after we moved into the new house, I had to start filling in with something. And I started looking. And again, like on my quest of a food processor, I realized that most modern machines meant to mix breads and cakes are just lousy. And so, here I am, still without a mixer.
Part of my struggle comes with our new diet, at least for a couple of us in my little family. And more of this will come on a later post but basically, baby Eleanor has had some tough GI issues since about 2 months old. Basically, severe constipation. And after working with our amazing pediatrician in Austin, and talking to some family – I went gluten free to see if it helped. Eleanor is still on Miralax, though at a low dose, and that keeps any day to day issues at bay. In the rare experiment where I cave to gluten (and the stuff is stinking everywhere – especially in resturant foods) she quickly becomes clogged up again. As in 24 hours of my bad meal (though the seafood while at the beach was really yummy).
So, since it appears that she will be gluten free for the undetermined future – do I need a heavy duty mixing machine that developes gluten like a dream? Does the $700 Verona Assistent justify its expense on a gf diet? And in all of my readings I keep hearing about the wonders of machines made in the US in the 50s and 60s that were durable and did what was needed of them and are still going strong – where are those today? No where.
What does it leave a girl to do?
Do what her grandma did of course! Buy a vintage machine. Please realize that my sewing machine, my Bernina 830, is a 40 year old machine and I heart it deeply. So, it’s not a big leap to figure that I might equally come to admire the virtues of an old mixer. The question is – which one? Unless you’re a fair bit older than myself, you likely aren’t familiar with a Dormeyer mixing machine. And yet, it seems that they were amazing mixers of the 30′s to 60′s. And I’m currently considering a Dormeyer 4400 or 4300.
There are other mixers of good breeding out there, too. Vintage (40 year old or older) Hamilton Beach model k. Or the much revered Kenwood. Or the Sunbeam model 12 (not to be confused with a 12 speed, which makes ebay shopping tricky).
If you are like me and are also looking down vintage lane because of the lousy stuff currently being made (plastic gears – really?) here are a few resources that you might be interested in.
Tips on buying a vintage machine. Be sure to read the comments for more good info.
WACEM yahoo group. We Actually Collect Electric Mixers group. No really, it’s a really yahoo group. With lots of good info that you can read in their messages without joining and proving what a dork ahem collector you are. And yes, I’m thinking about joining just so that I can ask questions.
Neslson EZY vintage mixer repair service. You might reconsider buying vintage when you see what it will cost to get your old machine back to new working order but consider this. If it lasted 50 years the first go around, it will likely last another 50 years… and what current machine on the market now has the chance of doing that? And, I have no idea of the quality of repairs from this guy so use the service at your own risk.
So, I’m currently waiting to see if I am outbid on a Dormeyer on Ebay. My max bid is $20 with shipping being another $17. I’m rather regretting bidding on it and hope that I get out bid this morning as I don’t want to miss out on a different machine, also a Dormeyer, for $20 more but that has a buy it now option. And I might cry if I miss out on both at the same time. Why the Dormeyer? Great reviews (what few there are) and metal bowls. And I have 2 little kids – metal stands a great chance of surviving another 50 years than glass, at least in my house.
I’ll keep you posted on what I end up with. It’s an adventure to be sure. And if you have one to sell to me – I’ll happily buy it!