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The Mixer Bible:
Second Edition

By Meredith Deeds and Carla Snyder
ISBN: 0778802035
Publisher: Robert Rose
Publication date: September, 2008
Format: Paperback
List price: $27.95 
Type: Equipment: Stand Mixer
Sample recipe: Thai Beef Meatballs with Peanut Dipping Sauce
Intended audience: novice advanced beginner good home cook gourmet professional
Apparent goal: stocking stuffer sampler comprehensive coffee-table Biblical stature
Competition: outclassed follower in the pack strong challenger likely champ
Variety: too little too much unusual nice mix just right
# of recipes: <50 <100 <200 <300 ≥300
Practical recipes: <20% <40% <60% <80% ≥80%
# of ingredients: ≤4 ≤7 ≤10 ≤12 >12
Ingredient hunt: 7-Eleven airfare required online pantry supermarket
Recipe complexity: too hard simple medium challenging professional
Instructions: inadequate verbose bare-bones full-figured educational
Time conscious: unconscious outright lies white lies realistic honorable
Cooking time: weekend project takes all day takes time ≥30 minutes <30 minutes
Added info: zip overwhelming scant balanced generous
Photos/drawings: none distracting decorative instructive glorious
Recipe results: ≤dorm food casual food family meals fancy food fit for royalty
Nutritional info: none overwhelming hit or miss adequate comprehensive
Format/Ease of Use
Layout: ugh cluttered fine considerate work of art
Legibility: unpleasant challenging tolerable clear brilliant
Production quality: cheesy dubious years of service gift quality stunning
Page numbers: non-existent hard-to-find spotty sufficient every page
Table of contents: AWOL frustrating passable useful excellent
Index quality: none tragic adequate good a treasure
Page flipping: upsetting tedious acceptable rare never
Writer: beginner food writer writing cook personality auteur
Cook: unknown self-taught chef teacher celebrity
Fulfills ambitions: falls short almost there satisfactory exceeds home run
Flavor delivered: sad inconsistent tasty delicious exceptional
Overall tone: sterile trying too hard straightforward best friend mom
Value: ouch! a little pricey worth splurging on the money a deal
Overall rating: skip it good very good excellent Ochef Top 100

Comments: Maybe our thought process is a little backward: not once in at least 20 years have we gone into the kitchen, spotted the stand mixer, and thought, "Hmmm, what can we whip up with that mixer tonight?" Yet it seems like that is exactly what this book is encouraging us to do. In that regard, it feels like the cart is out in front of the horse. But the authors swear that in years of teaching, they have come across multitudes of students who don't know what their mixer can do. And they've clearly sold enough copies of the book to warrant putting out a second edition.

Many of the recipes require you to have special mixer attachments: the meat grinder and sausage stuffer, the slicer/shredder, the pasta maker and pasta rollers, and the ice-cream maker, taken together add up to a hefty investment, but they certainly extend the mixer's capabilities.

Beyond the cart/horse issue, the book, with more than 300 recipes, offers a lot to choose from. Chapters feature appetizers, soups, main dishes, side dishes, sausages, pasta, breads, cookies, desserts, and "condiments, sauces, and extras." To us, the baking, pasta, sausage, and soup recipes are the most valuable. Recipes in other chapters use the dough, pasta, sausage, and soup that you've made as ingredients, but of themselves don't make great use of the mixer.

In some cases, using a mixer is going to complicate or slow down production – very few people are likely to grind their own beef more than once or twice for curiosity's sake, but they might use the meat grinder often to make sausage. Still, a cookbook should inspire people to cook and broaden their horizons, and this one does that.

(The puff pastry recipe is really a recipe for mock puff pastry, but that's a quibble.)


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