Saturday, 20 July 2013

Product Review: Breville 'The Scraper Mixer Pro' BEM800

After being in service for my family for 30 years, at long last our Kenwood Chef mixer finally gave way to old age. The motor could still run, but the mixing blades could not be fastened to its rotating head properly, so it is as good as gone. I do not know which model it is, but it was when Kenwood mixers were still made in the UK and spare parts for such an old model is hard to come by.

I had to find a replacement fast as orders for cakes kept coming in, but I wanted to get something that is of good performance and could last me a long time, so naturally I thought of getting a Kenwood model too. The KM040 model seems to be the best choice; even if the price was a bit steep, I was willing to make the investment as I know Kenwood is not expensive for nothing.

An electrical appliance shop in Kelana Jaya offered me the best price, but unfortunately they did not have any in stock. I had to wait at least 3 days for the stock to arrive, but I could not wait.

I went to Aeon Midvalley as I know it also sells Kenwood mixers, but I was disappointed to find that the price had been marked up so much. Exasperated, I began to look at other make and models.

Coincidentally, Breville was having a roadshow for their mixer at Aeon Midvalley. I am loyal to a fault with Kenwood, so I was a bit wary of other make, especially Breville since I rarely heard of its name. Had it been a Kitchenaid, I might be more responsive as it is well known and proven to be a workhorse in the kitchen.

The promoter was explaining the details and demonstrating the Breville mixer to us and my mum was very impressed with it. While the said demonstration was taking place, I quickly Googled up Breville mixers on my phone and read reviews and comparisons of the mixer with others in the market.

My new baby :) But the only option available was the boring silver
I was surprised to know that the Breville BEM800 is comparable to the Kitchenaid Artisan and in some reviews, it is considered the better mixer than Kitchenaid's. At a price tag of RM1999.00 it is cheaper than Kenwood and Kitchenaid. Of course there are pros and cons of each make (Kenwood, Kitchenaid and Breville), but after going through the demonstration again, I was convinced enough to give it a try.

The Breville BEM800 is powered by a 1,000W motor and the body is of die cast metal, so it is powerful, steady and solid. However, the motor's sound is quite minimal and compared to the noisy Kenwood, the Breville purrs like a kitty. 

The mixer comes with a stainless steel 5.5 quart bowl, plastic guards for the bowl (so there is no or less spills when you mix those batter), a plastic spatula and 4 blade attachments; the 'Scraper' beater (actually it is the K beater with scraper on its sides), the K beater, the whisk and the kneading hook. All are made of stainless steel except for the Scraper beater.

Here are the whisk and Scraper attachments. The other two are in the box and I was quite lazy to take them out
Instead of the conventional numeral speed dial, the Breville Scraper Mixer Pro has a LED indicator dial that indicates the right speed for various mixing tasks, from folding a batter to aerating and whipping of meringue or cream. It also has a timer, so it is easy for me to set the time for each task (whipping Italian Meringue buttercream takes about 35 minutes from start to finish). Also, the mixing bowl has a handle, so it was easy for me to pour batter into the baking tin. 

For the first 2 weeks, I used it almost daily and for 3 to 4 times a day, so I could say that I put it through quite a test, but I am happy to say that the Breville mixer passed the test with flying colours. So far, I had whipped up perfect Italian Meringue buttercream everytime since I start using the Breville mixer.

My only grouse is that the mixer does not come with other functions such as grinding, pasta and ice cream making etc (which you can do with a Kenwood or Kitchenaid mixer, provided that you buy the attachment separately), but honestly, I needed it to work at its best as a mixer, so other functions should be secondary. 

Perhaps if I could afford it in the future, I could get myself one of those multi functioned Kenwood or Kitchenaid... :) But right now, I am very happy with my Breville mixer and alhamdullillah had made the right choice in purchasing it.

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