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MIXERS....I need help deciding - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community



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MIXERS....I need help deciding

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  • MIXERS....I need help deciding

    Can everyone help me out please...I have been researching stand mixers and countertop mixers have have heard everything from a KA is good enough to dont get anything less than a work horse hobart....anyone have a globe sp5 or waring commercial line 7 QT...cant remeber the model number of the waring. whats everybody using. What kind os mix times for their units would help too. Maybe a separate subject topic for MIXERS would help...or is there a place out there I have not looked yet... Thanks in advance!!!!

  • #2
    Re: MIXERS....I need help deciding


    After writing a lengthy response and subsequently deleting it, I have decided to make my response simple and although I am sure there are many whose opinion will differ, here is mine:

    One does not need a mixer. It is a luxury and for tens of thousands of years mankind went without. Autolyse.

    There are some notable exceptions, I have a recipe for a molasses ginger spice cookie which is too stiff to be mixed by my arthritic hands for one. But you asked what we have and use, my KA 6 quart Pro Model was way overkill, it allows me to make some things quicker, not necessarily better. But for me the "WFO experience" is not about doing things quicker.

    Hope this helps,


    • #3
      Re: MIXERS....I need help deciding

      Thanks for getting back...I am with you on the WFO idea and mentallity about not having to do things quicker. I really enjoy the relaxation time I get when doing anything and everything associated with my WFO. What I am trying to do is help myself get throught the times when I have a party and make about 20 to 30 pies. I am looking for something to help me prepare for those days. At the same time I wanted to see if I could gain some consistancy in my one to two times per week that I make pies for my family. We usualy make about 6 at a time. No big deal for mixing those but I was trying to get more consistant with the small batches at the same time. How much can you mix in the KA 6 and at what recipe? Are you using 00 flour and have you tried other flours or high gluten? The water content, as far as I can see, gets to be the govering factory when determining the batch size. From my research I found the globe sp5 can handle 4 pounds easily. Thats about (7) 260 gram pies. That would really free up some time for me on those party days. And by the way, ever since friend found out I have a WFO and they taste the pies, those days are more and more frequent. ( I not bragging, just experiencing the same thing that everyone else has to face when you build a WFO. ) People come from all around. Its a great thing.



      • #4
        Re: MIXERS....I need help deciding

        I have had great luck using the recipe below. It uses a food processor rather than a mixer. I divide the dough ball created into thirds making for pizzas running about 170+ grams per pizza skin. You could easily divide it into two and get pizzas closer to your desired weight.

        These are easy to make and for ourselves and an additional couple I usually just double the recipe (I make it twice). That delivers 6 pizzas about 11 to 12 inches in diameter. Total time to mix and clean up is 20 minutes...the rest is waiting (not that there isn't alot to do for a party. I have modified the recipe to two periods of autolyse: two hours then a stretch and fold and divide into separate containers then two more hours and into the WFO. That makes for about 4 hours and an easy count back to when I have to start mixing. I have done a party with 36 pizzas and it wasn't a problem...having enough individual containers was more of a problem.

        I have not played with mixing this recipe by hand but seeing as how wet it is it should be no more of a problem that the typical no kneed bread dough.

        Here's the recipe:
        Serf Join Date: Mar 2005
        Location: california
        Posts: 17

        My first Pizza Party And Dough Recipe


        Here's a link to photo's of my first pizza party


        Also I found this dough recipe and it is the best I've had.

        2 cups bread flour
        1 tsp quick rise yeast or 1/2 pack
        1 tsp salt
        1 tbsp Olive Oil
        1 cup warm water

        in a food processor with the plastic blade. blend dry ingrediants add oil then turn on and add the water slowly. it is a wet dough. turn out on a floured surface and knead 5-10 times put in a large oiled bowl, rise 2 hours in a warm place. thats it and it is great........

        end quote. Search the archives there is a whole thread on different recipes. I did acomparison with this recipe against the Reinhart one in "The Baker's Apprentice". Among my test group there was no general feeling that the Reinhart one was better or worse and a couple people voted this one over the Reinhart one. So as it is easier to make and a toss-up or better with my friends and myself, I have continued with it., (save for my modification of two risings with a stretch and fold between).

        Hope this helps,


        • #5
          Re: MIXERS....I need help deciding

          Interesting...I thought of using a food processor but did not know how it would react. No speed control...no kneading hook....You say a plastic blade.....I have to see what ours has. I know I have a steel blade with two cutting edges..can you describe the plastic one?
          I may try a small batch tonight even if I dont cook it. Very interesting.

          Also..about how long do you mix it after all water is added?


          • #6
            Re: MIXERS....I need help deciding

            The blade looks like the one with metal blades save that is made of plastic and a whole lot duller.

            As for the dough itself: place all dry ingredients in processor, pulse a few moments to mix together. Then push "ON" and slowly dribble in the one tablespoon EVOO (Extra Virgin etc.etc.) then slowly add the water. If you dump all the water in at once you will end up with a mess. Slow and easy does it and in a few moments the mass will become dough and begin to clear from the sides of the bowl. Stop. Using a statula (the one that came with our Kitchen Aid Processor is special in fitting to the corners of the bowl) empty the dough onto a well floured surface. Flour your hands and a few quick kneads and then form into a ball and place into a oiled (EVOO) container rolling dough ball to coat the surface. Cover the container and sit it in a room temperature location. You may have to vary the amount of water a small amount to account for the weather and humidity but not very much.

            Two hours later do a stretch and fold (see link if unsure what I mean) reshape into a ball and divide into the size pizza balls you require. The dough is very soft and wonderful to work with once you get the hang of working with loose dough. Master this and ciabatta is no problem.

            To shape into skins: invert container onto a floured, let gravity do it's thing, lightly flour the top surface (which a moment ago was the bottom in the container) pat down the center using finger tips. Invert the disc of dough and repeat the patting of the center. Next is the hard part in working loose pizza dough; if right handed lay back of left hand on top of the disc of dough. With right hand grasp the far edge of the disc and gently pull/lift it onto the left hand grasping the edge of the dough with the thumb and forefinger of left hand. Rotate your left hand and lift gently the dough onto the back of your hands. Now carefully move the dough between the hands stretching the skin as you rotate the disc stretching and shaping the round just like "normal" pizza skins just this is a bunch more delicate. When right size flop it down (top of pizza skin down... back of hands side up) onto your floured peel adjust the shape and place the toppings. Easier to make a video than to describe. However, I taught both my grandkids in one demo and they both where making beautiful round pizzas in short time.

            Note: when shaping the skin you can lift it up and if it's a clear bright day, easily see the "windowpane" webbing in the dough they describe in the books.

            Here's the link to the stretch and fold video:
            Sourdough Home - Stretch and Fold - A Gentle Way To Develop Dough

            Hope this helps,


            • #7
              Re: MIXERS....I need help deciding

              I love my SP5, except that the bowl does not detach for cleaning.
              Some other threads on mixers...
              My Oven Thread:


              • #8
                Re: MIXERS....I need help deciding

                The prospect of no-knead dough is currently being explored in another thread here: http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f10/...ugh-10767.html

                I am due to do the first baking exercise this evening to put it to the test but first observations are not very promising so far. I followed Rinehart's latest method very closely and I am really keen for this to work as it saves a lot of effort, cleaning etc but I have some reservations. What I did note in using this method is that I stirred the dry ingredients together and it combined quite well into a somewhat dry, rough ball (as indicated it would by Rinehart). After 5 mins, the dough was transformed into a wet mix and I continued to hand mix for 5 mins then folded it and cut it into portions. It was very sticky and not very workable but I did note that it was not as smooth and "silky" in texture as I got with the mixer.

                In turning to your question then, as this stage I will definitely keep on using a mixer in order to get the smoothness/silkiness and other characterisitics that I am used to in pizza dough. What I will do is to keep the mechanical process to a minimum though - as per Rinehart's recipe (which incidentally also mentions the use of a electric mixer). I also found that 5 minutes autolyse seemed to work quite well and supports the assertions of some that the whole dough making process should be kept brief and with minimal handling. My earlier methodology included a kneading process that was clearly too long.

                Another point you raised was the bulk preparation. On that point I must say that it is really essential to use a machine to do this. For example, this weekend I have about 12 people coming around for pizza. Even doing a small batch (under 1 kg) last night by hand, I found it quite physically demanding so this would be magnified exponentially for larger batches of dough. It is really nice to do just a single batch (and not 3 - 4 as in the past). This saves a lot of time and really combines the ingredients well.

                The Kitchenaid I used in the past (with J hook) was completely useless as the dough just sticks to the hook and gets "slapped" around the bowl and did not actually knead the dough at all. Interesting to note that the KA manual suggestings "finishing dough by hand" which suggests that the company is aware of this shortcoming in the product. It should be noted that this only applies to the small bench top model and the larger, drop bowl model with the spiral hook does seem to give better results.

                Overall then, I would highly recommend acquiring a large mixer (spiral is a good option) particularly if you want to do regular bulk catering. Some more info here might be useful in helping you decide: http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f10/...lour-8156.html
                Last edited by heliman; 10-24-2011, 06:11 AM.
                / Rossco


                • #9
                  Re: MIXERS....I need help deciding

                  I love my Electrolux DLX and make 10lb batches of pizza dough multiple times a week with no issue..it is a real workhorse


                  • #10
                    Re: MIXERS....I need help deciding

                    I second much of what Heliman says. My shoulders can't take a whole lot of pushing 11% protein dough around. I have a 7qt Kenwood (they keep getting acquired) and it really struggles with anything more than 4 lbs. I don't knead more than a couple of minutes after a 20-40 min autolyse and it's still a workout for a supposedly robust mixer. I can't speak to the efficacy of the DLX, Jim highly recommends the SP5 and I believe he does some good sized baking sessions. He must break it into manageable batches, (5lbs)?
                    I researched this question awhile and would love to try a Santos fork mixer, but not at $13-1500.00, so I recently found a Berkel 20 qt for 500 in quite good shape. I did a 16lbs batch (2mins at speed 2) of Hamelmans Vermont Sourdough at 65% and the whole operation was so much easier than three 5.33lbs batches (cleanup and all). I was paying close attention to dough temp and fermentation times were more predictable. The finished loaves were my best yet as the spring was better and the crumb was uniformly open. For large batches the 20 quart makes things easy.



                    • #11
                      Re: MIXERS....I need help deciding

                      the Berkel 20 qt mixer's a pricey machine too.

                      It looks kind of Hobart-like.
                      My geodesic oven project: part 1, part 2


                      • #12
                        Re: MIXERS....I need help deciding

                        Thanks so much for all the replys...I just want to mention that the SP5 I was looking at is manufacutered by GLOBE. It is not the same as the one others are referencing here. It is a commercial counter top mixer. Globe makes units as large as 60qrts...so they are truely commercial. I have gotten prices that are in the 550 range from the restaurant suuply house where we get our supplies for our gelato business. The equipment rep highly recommends these products especially for the size batches that I intend to make.

                        I just finished trying a batch with the food processor per the above posted method from Wiley....looks pretty promising...going to,let it stay overnight in the refrig and try tomorrow nite.. Thanks Wiley
                        Here are the links for the mixer and the capacity charts:




                        • #13
                          Re: MIXERS....I need help deciding

                          Wow! I am amazed at the quanities of bread you fellows are making, certainly greater quanities than I would ever have need to make. Certainly a mixer makes sense when speaking of such near commercial or commercial quanities. I am not criticising anyone for whatever choice they make in regards to a mixer or lack of same. Like I said there are times I have to use my KA and for my needs it is more than enough.

                          However, for the larger batches of bread that I (a relative novice) have made, I have been very pleased with the results achieved with autolyse. Here's a photo of the largest single bowl of dough I have made to date. Photo taken just before the first stretch and fold. 1.5 kg flour 1.25 kg water 3/4 teaspoon yeast and 16 gms sea salt, approx 12 hour (over night) autolyse. And a photo of the rolls this blob of dough made. Also an old photo I took of two bakers who daily baked bread for Atuona largest village in Hiva Oa. No mixer. in fact no electricity at the time this photo was taken.



                          • #14
                            Re: MIXERS....I need help deciding

                            I reckon you should think about a 20 Qt machine - the 5 Qt may be a bit light. Neill is a good person to discuss the performance of both with as he has two at the moment of differing sizes. I believe he is selling his 9 Qt one and plans to keep the 20 Qt one.

                            I have a 20 Qt and it does the work effortlessly. My preference is to get a machine that has capacity to spare so it can basically idle along and not heat up the motor too much (as the KA does). Perhaps consider a second hand model - there seem to be plenty around, even some that are "pensioned off" by bakeries will still have some life in them.
                            / Rossco


                            • #15
                              Re: MIXERS....I need help deciding

                              I may be wrong, but when I was shopping the 20gt mixers I got the impression that there were two varieties, a lighter capacity and a heavier. They were priced accordingly and usually pizza dough was mentioned as needing the heavier. For my Berkel and I think most of the ones that look like a Hobart, the bowls and attachments are all a common size.