If you bought a Bosch Universal, your mixer came with a heavy-duty plastic mixing bowl that has many advantages. However, some people have an affinity for stainless steel and the optional Bosch stainless bowl is available.
The stainless bowl, weighing in only about a pound heavier than the standard bowl is lightweight enough for me to handle with my disability, yet heavy-duty enough to be impressive and worth its cost.
I was very pleased with the bowl design and intrigued by the 3-armed kneading mechanism that fit on the BOTTOM of the steel bowl, not on a center post as the standard bowl. One of the kneading arms has a hard plastic sheath over the steel arm with a flat edge that appears to help scrape the dough into the other kneader arms and kneads dough very efficiently.
In all my tests, the bottom driven kneading arms worked beautifully using large and small batches, breads and pasta dough. (I also mix meatloaf in my Bosch). The end results were comparable with the results using the Bosch standard bowl and I consider this a plus. The stainless bowl is the same capacity as the standard bowl and comes with a full splash ring and lid. I was able to make 6 lovely, light loaves of my award-winning Bosch bread in either bowl, and with both produced excellent results.
The stainless steel bowl was very easy to use, and extremely easy to clean up. My husband Tim (who is our main dishwasher) expressed his pleasure at the ease the stainless bowl washed and cleaned.
There was one concern, and it is was because we were not given this information by the manufacturer, but in lieu of a center post, the kneading mechanism attaches to the bottom of the stainless bowl by means of a metal shaft. Tim commented that this shaft needed to be cleaned to remove dough and we were unsure how.
After phone calls and some sleuthing, we discovered this metal shaft was designed to be removed from the bowl after each use for cleaning (it simply pops out easily through the bottom) and some grease applied to the rubbing gasket before reinserting it. Shortening is recommended. Because we don’t eat shortening, we use olive oil.
One negative to buying this bowl is that you cannot “retire” your standard bowl completely. You can use the stainless bowl for all your kneading, BUT, because it has no center shaft, you cannot use whisks or whips in it. However, to me this is not a big concern since I like having the two bowls and I use the stainless primarily for all my kneading and mixing functions, and save the standard bowl for using the whisks and whips. My husband Tim was thrilled to have 2 bowls because I sometimes do large batches and multiple batches and he would not have to jump up and wash the bowl so I could proceed to the next batch!
Overall, I found the stainless steel Bosch Universal mixing bowl to be well-made and meets the high-quality workmanship, design and performance I demand from Bosch and they consistently deliver. I was very pleased with the stainless steel bowl and although it is not a necessity, I would buy it for my own kitchen.
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