While booking it through the Home + Housewares show yesterday in Chicago (there is so much to see), Faith and I passed these gorgeous pastel machines, and immediately stopped to ooh and aah. "Ankarsrum," I read on the booth sign. "Swedish quality since 1940." The shape of the machine was interesting, and we were particularly intrigued to see a few units lying on their side. What were we dealing with here? A stand mixer? Juicer? Blender? Meat grinder? Turns out an Ankarsrum machine is all those things, and more:
Ankarsrum stand mixers (previously known under a variety of names including Verona, Magic Mill, Electrolux Assistent, and DLX) have been around since 1940, when they were launched by Swedish manufacturer Electrolux, but they've only recently become available for purchase in the US.
An Ankarsrum machine isn't just a mixer: it's a "kitchen assistant" or "kitchen center" as the PR people like to say. The accompanying accessories (all made by Messerschmitt, which also makes the attachments for KitchenAid) enable you "grind meats for hamburger and sausage; strain/puree fruits; slice and shred all types of vegetables; flake grains for oatmeal, granola, musli; blend a smoothie, grind flours and coffee; make your morning juice; grate nuts; extrude your favorite pasta shapes." So basically, if you have this machine you can get rid of your food processor, blender, meat grinder, grain mill, juicer, strainer, and any other slicers/choppers you have.
What's fascinating is that a few of the accessories (like the grain mill and the meat grinder) require turning the machine on its side, which is odd and brilliant. Also, the 600 watt motor is in the bottom of the unit, which means that when kneading dough, for example, the bowl itself spins while a steel arm holds a moveable roller and scraper. Want to see it in action? If you have 20 minutes, watch this video which introduces all its features:
The electrical motor and all of the aluminum components, including the arm, the arm attachment, the upper stand and the mincer and its parts, are still cast, processed and assembled at the Electrolux factory in Ankarsrum, Sweden. The machine retails for $699 - a hefty investment, but a lifelong one.
We're hoping to get a unit to test out and review! If you have an Ankarsrum, we'd love to hear your thoughts on the machine. Is it really as great as it sounds?