Review: Lisa Featherby tests the new Smeg Stand Mixer

GT's senior food editor, Lisa Featherby, road-tests the latest in kitchen cool – but is the Smeg Stand Mixer as impressive as it looks?

Lisa Featherby, Senior Food Editor
With its retro Italian-design, the new Smeg Stand Mixer makes an impressive kitchen addition. Sleek and chic with its glam '50s style, the mixer is for me, fantastic form-and-function combined, and so versatile, I was excited by its possibility to outshine (and make redundant) more than just one of the many other bulky appliances cluttering my kitchen bench.
I was given the silver-style mixer to road-test, its modern curving instantly giving my kitchen a cool update. Available in seven colours, there's a style to suit every kitchen - the red and pastel pink colours offer an opportunity to make a true kitchen statement. 
But while the mixer looked the part, I was interested to see if its functionality lived up to the look, and with a handful of recipes and a collection of the mixer's shiny accessories, I quickly put Smeg's new mixer to the test. 
If you love Italian cuisine (and who doesn't?), the Smeg Stand Mixer is a worthy investment. I'm a big fan of making pasta from scratch; the result is pasta with beautiful texture, plus from a freshly made point of view, you know exactly what's going in there. Thanks to the mixer's pasta attachments, you really don't need to be a whiz in the kitchen to achieve impressive results - trust me. The mixer's dough hook emulates the real motion of kneading (but with planetary action, meaning it'll work the pasta to a lovely smooth consistency doing all the work for you), and its roller and cutter attachments allow all the work to be carried out in the one place.
The attachments slide in easily and are quick to change over from roller to pasta cutters. Plus, they make more light work of laminating the dough, and I just love that you can turn it up to high speed to do this, too. Who doesn't love a weeknight pasta dish?
I must admit, I'm now slightly obsessed with the mixer's slicer/ grater attachment. I first trialled the add-on shredding cabbage for a slaw (I recommend the Italian slaw for a perfect pasta side), and then later with a thicker cut that I'm looking forward to fermenting - something I love to keep on hand. I also made some beautiful roasted hazelnut meal, which I think will work wonders in GT's gluten-free cacao, hazelnut and raspberry cake. It's really an all-in-one attachment and was perfect for grating parmesan, too. 
Mixing it up between the large and small grater, I also made some lovely broccoli and cauliflower rice, which is great for a healthy alternative to regular rice. To test out the slicer, I made some zucchini trifolati. Sautéed with garlic and olive oil, it has become a summertime vegetable favourite of mine, which will now be made even easier thanks to the mixer's handy attachment.   
What I love most about the Smeg Stand Mixer is that it can remain on display in the kitchen, only having attachments added when they're needed. There's a lot more bench space, and a lot less washing up in comparison to other blending gadgets such as my food processor. I love this aspect of it being an all-in-one appliance, and I'm looking forward to enjoying authentic meals, with a lot less hassle, too.
This article is presented by Smeg.