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Williams-Sonoma gift cards dilemma. Help me out here...

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
I have...~280 in WIlliams Sonoma gift cards. For the life of me, I can't find anything I like.

I "need" really, 2 things...a Kitchen aid, and a new cutting board.

Here is the problem.....WS is overpriced for Kitchen-aides, i can get it for at least 20% off some place else (im looking at the pro, which id have to throw in some money)....and I can get it for cheaper some place else, (but I wouldn't have 280 to put towards it) and cutting boards, I can get a boos block cheap from WS, but then i'd have a ton of gift cards left over.

The problem is anything i want, I can find for half price someplace else....and I hate to just waste the giftcards.

what would you do? my fiance says we should just throw in some money and get the kitchen aide as we can't find it THAT much cheaper.
post #2 of 20
I had a similar experience there but with much less money.

Buy the Kitchenaid.
Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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post #3 of 20
That's the downside to giftcards, being chained to buying from one source.
I agree with Phatch, buy the kitchenaid.
It's the overall better deal, as the giftcard is in essence "found money".
Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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post #4 of 20
Thread Starter 
now do i want the pro 500 or the 610.
post #5 of 20
Yes, you can get the same KA someplace else for less, but you have $280 worth of gift cards specifically to WS. My opinion is "spend it with abandon". Let's say you have been planning to get the KA mixer anyway, and lets say you might have to add in money of your own to complete the purchase...How much mixer could you actually purchase for the difference? You could go online and see if there are any WS coupons or sales going on right now. Even WS has good offers.
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post #6 of 20
Thread Starter 
anyone know if shopKitchenAid.com | 2008 REBATE OFFER would apply to the "williams-sonoma exclusive "610" model" ? be silly for it not, but I guess it would be better to ask them.
post #7 of 20
The rebate offer says it is for the "select bowl-lifter KA". Looks to me like it may be for a specific model only. But yes, it couldn't hurt to ask.
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post #8 of 20
Could only hope to have such a dilemma.:D

There's a ton of gadgets and supplies that you could get from Williams Sonoma. But if you're set on the KA then why not?:look:
post #9 of 20
...and WS gives a professional discount to chefs. Just tell 'em. I think it is 10-15%.

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Invention, my dear friends, is ninety-three percent perspiration, six percent electricity, four percent evaporation, and two percent butterscotch ripple

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post #10 of 20
I'd go for the KA for a couple of reasons.

As others have said, the gift card is found money. So blow it on something extravagant. I would not buy any Williams-Sonoma exclusive product, though. Get the standard Pro 5 if those are your choices.

More important than just blowing the money: Given W-S's reputation for lousy customer service, you've got a direct redress with KA if there's a warranty problem. I wouldn't count on W-S to back up anything they sold you.

I
They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #11 of 20
RPM - I believe the rebate does cover the KA Pro 5 model from the way I read it - not sure about the 610. As you said, best to call KA.


Hope this helps,

Willie
post #12 of 20
Thread Starter 
been on the phone with KA AND WS all morning (well the fiance is, I don't have the patience)

well see...
post #13 of 20
Thread Starter 
well, apparently williams-sonoma is having a 50$ gift card when you buy one, so I can get a new boos board to...2 birds with 1 stone (and 100$)
post #14 of 20
Thread Starter 
picked up the nickle pro 610 and a new cutting board.
post #15 of 20
Pressure cooker, KitchenAid, cutting board...where's the pictures?
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post #16 of 20
Thread Starter 


:smoking:
post #17 of 20
Well mazel tov! And merry Chrsitmas (again).

Enjoy in good health,
BDL

PS. Gung hay fat chow!
post #18 of 20
Thread Starter 
Happy Holidays to you as well,

Now...I can try out some of your bread recipes....as soon as I figure out how to properly use it
post #19 of 20
Start mixing (with the paddle) on "1," when the flour stops flying around, mix on "2" until the ingredients are well combined, and the moisture seems to be evenly distributed. Knead (with the hook) on "2." Before the dough is completely kneaded, remove the bowl from the mixer, the dough from the bowl, and finish kneading by hand -- only until the dough passes the windowpane test. Set the dough aside, wash and dry the workbowl. Pour a little oil (usually olive, but it depends) in the bowl. Pick up the kneaded dough, "pull it down," put it in the bowl, cover it and let it proof.

Alternatively ("Autolysis" method): Mix on 1 until you can safely raise the speed to 2. Mix at two very thoroughly, about five minutes for a two loaf recipe. Let the dough sit for ten to twenty minutes, then knead it on two for about two minutes. Let the dough proof until increased in volume by about 50%. Remove the dough from the bowl, fold it in thirds along one axis, then thirds on a perpendicular axis. Let the folded dough rise until doubled in volume.

You see the particular take on autolysis (autolyse in French) I just wrote, at the best bread forum on the internet -- the fresh loaf: The Fresh Loaf | News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts Just bear in mind that although it's an excellent forum, it's not gospel -- and like all enthusiast forums it tends to get swept up in fads.

Getting back to "how to use the mixer for breads:" There are only two sensitive points. One comes in the beginning when you first mix -- it's important to get the flour/water ratio right. Fortunately it's not very difficult. If the dough sticks to the bowl it's too wet; and if there's dry flour on the bottom, it's too dry. (A bit simplistic because sometimes you use ingredients that express moisture as they're incorporated or kneaded -- but generally true).

The other comes in knowing when to turn the machine off. The dough changes appearance when it's almost ready -- it looks smooth and it begins to feel silky. That's the time to take it out and finish kneading it on the board until it passes the "windowpane test." It takes some practice. You'll definitely over-knead your bread a few times. Just part of the learning curve.

FWIW, I'm mixing and kneading most of my "artisanal" (aka "bread basket") breads by hand -- not because you get better texture (you do), but because I'm still tweaking the recipes and can use the information I get from handling the dough through all the stages. On the other hand, Izbnso, who's a technically better baker than I am (by far) also hand mixes and kneads those breads by hand -- she says the improvement in the bread is worth the extra time and trouble -- and frankly she's a better judge of that than I am. Sometimes I get a little lazy.

When you get serious about baking, you'll find "by hand" invaluable for spotting the various timing cues at least until you're sure about a given type of loaf -- but after you've got them you tend to use the machine. It's a lot easier and saves a little time. At any rate, you want to get a pretty good handle on both.

I've got three recipes posted in Chef Talk that are good for advanced "beginners," and IIRC all of them have directions for stand mixers as well as by hand. They're the Pumpernickel, Onion Dill, and Olive breads. The pumpernickel and onion dill will speak to your ethnic roots -- the olive bread is more up the alley of your current tastes.

Right off the bat, it's probably a good idea to get a couple of good bread baking books. My own bread baking is sort of in the style of Peter Reinhart (extra rises, retarded rises, pre-ferments, poolishes, etc.). Even setting my own prejudices aside you can't do better than making his "The Bread Baker's Apprentice," one of your first two or three books on bread baking.

BDL
post #20 of 20
:)

oh this is going to be fun watching RPM make bread.


RPM, the Peter Reinhart book is pretty good. I'm to the point now where I have to make at least two loaves of bread a week. You're gonna have fun!

dan
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