In addition to your typical balloon whisks, you’ve probably seen whisks with corkscew loops, balls on the ends, and even balls in the center of the balloon. All of these whisk variations promise to help incorporate air into beaten ingredients faster and more efficiently than a regular whisk. What you might not have seen before is a Donkey Kong-inspired whisk like the Kitchen Kong Whisk .The whisk is made by Fred and features metal wire loops that enclose a silicone Donkey Kong look-a-like ape inside. The ape is supposed to help break up large chunks of a thick or dry batter, and prevent them from balling up inside of the whisk, in addition to looking pretty nifty when not in use.
Blame it on the fact that I played video games as a kid (and was not too shabby at Donkey Kong!), but this whisk just makes me smile! For most things – beating eggs, whipping cream – it is going to act exactly as a normal whisk would. The ape may help break up dry batters when the whisk is in use, but this is one kitchen tool that I would happily admit to buying just for the fun of it.
Generally, whisks that are large and have many, well spread-out wires are the most effective for mixing batters because they can get through the batter to incorporate all of the ingredients quickly and easily. Tovolo’s Better Batter Whisks break this tradition to some degree. The colorful silicone whisks are not large and have relatively few “wires,” but they have an unusual design that combines a whisk and a spatula that makes their whisks very effective. The idea is very much like the idea behind bowl-scraping silicone paddles for stand mixers: the ends of the whisk have thick, blade-like silicone extensions that add a folding motion along with the usual action of a whisk. This allows the batter to come together faster, with fewer strokes of the tool, and should create a more tender batter (for pancakes, for instance) than your average whisk might. Those blades also scrape the sides of the bowl as you mix your batter, just about eliminating the need to use a separate spatula for the same job.
The whisks can be used for mixing just about anything, not just for baking applications. They can be used to whip up fluffy scrambled eggs and to whisk sauces and puddings on the stove top, as the silicone is heat resistant to 600F and is gentle enough to use in nonstick pans.
Stand mixers are definitely a useful tool in the kitchen if you do a lot of baking, but they don’t always deliver perfect results. For instance, standard paddle attachments don’t scrape the sides of the bowl, meaning that you’ll have to scrape down the bowl a few times during mixing just as you would if you were mixing by hand or with a smaller hand mixer. But there are quite a few products out there that can improve your stand mixer experience. The Beater Blade and the Flex Edge Beater are paddle attachments that have spatula-like silicone blades that scrape down the sides of the bowl as they mix, giving you a more even result in less time.
The Pourfect Whisk-A-Bowl is an attachment that improves on the large balloon-style whisk that typically comes with a stand mixer. The Whisk-a-Bowl is a whisking attachment for KitchenAid mixers that has an unusual spiral design that allows you to whisk two to three times faster than you would with a traditional attachment, get fluffier foams and meringues. The maker also notes that meringues made with this attachment are more stable and last longer without deflating or weeping. It is also better at drawing up ingredients from the bottom of the bowl than a standard whisk attachment, so you get a more uniform result. This whisk is available in several sizes to accommodate different styles of stand mixers, though at the moment it is only available for KitchenAid mixers.