A trip to Tokyo wouldn’t be complete without a trip to my mother-ship, Muji. Friends who have been over to my house, laugh and say that my home is basically a Muji showroom. In my opinion, their products are perfect for basically every corner of your home. Especially if you live in an apartment the size of a postage stamp. Their organizers fit into the tightest of spaces, and have an unobtrusive design that fits into any pre-existing decor. In this post, I’ll give you a glimpse of the Shinjuku Muji store, and also a quick product review of their electric hand mixer (model MJ-HM1A), that I brought home with me.
The Muji stores in Japan are similarly laid out to the ones in Taiwan, with separate floors for clothing, bedding, kitchen, household, and of course stationery products. However, they definitely carry products that are only available in Japan.
For instance, the store we visited had a lovely (and thriving!) plant section.
I also spotted these adorable onigiri lunchboxes on my way out of the store. ( I still regret not buying one).
After spending enough time ogling and daydreaming, I moved onto smaller appliances, that I could more realistically take home in my suitcase. Some of their items, such as the rice cooker, kettle and toaster we have in Taiwan. Appliances that seem to be only available in Japan, are the blender, coffee maker, and the hand mixer. I’ve been in the market for a new hand mixer for awhile now… but I’ve never settled on a particular model until now. (Well, in my imagination, I have a gorgeous KitchenAid mixer) This hand mixer from Muji fits into my current reality (and kitchen space), and the price of ¥4900, ($43 U.S. dollars and $1356 Taiwan dollars) was also fairly reasonable, as far as hand mixers go.
The best part of the display at this Muji, was that they plug in some of the appliances, so you can actually try them. I tested the mixer for sound (reasonable, not too noisy) and weight, I could easily hold it in one hand, and it felt light, yet still like a substantially made tool.
I was also pleasantly surprised that I could get tax back on my purchase here (you just have to spend ¥5000 and then fill out some forms at one of their counters) A tip to shopping in Japan is to always have your passport with you. You absolutely need it if you want to apply for a tax refund!
After I got home, one of the first items that I couldn’t wait to unpack and use was the mixer. I whipped up a quick batch of blueberry muffins (the recipe can be found here) so I could experiment with the mixer. As you can see from the photo, it’s just a basic mixer, with a whisk, and handle. The whisk pops off, and both pieces are quite compact to store.
The handle has one round button that ejects the whisk, and three modes of operation: Off, 1 and 2.
The handy part is that the mixer is designed to stand up sturdily on the counter when not in use, which means you don’t have to worry about it tipping over, and slinging batter across your counter. (I would definitely leave a bowl underneath the mixer to catch any drips).
At first, I was a little worried that the whisk wouldn’t be sturdy. But I was wrong! This whisked through softened butter and sugar like a champion.
I tried to take a video, but it’s not of the best quality. Probably because I was trying to do it one handed, while operating the mixer with my right hand (I’m left- handed, so this was an awkward maneuver for me). This resulted in my dropping my phone on the kitchen counter, (and cracking the glass protection cover) but luckily I didn’t drop it into the bowl. But, what I wanted to show you was the sound the mixer makes~ which to me is important when considering whether to purchase an appliance, because I hate the ones that are really loud, especially if you are working in a small space. This mixer operates fairly quietly (it’s a little louder than usual, because I turned the mixer towards the camera, and it most likely scraped against the side of the bowl). Towards the end of the video, I turned the mixer to Level 2, for a bit, and even then, the noise level is still quite tolerable (and quickly turned it back, as batter was starting to fly all over the kitchen).
In short, I love the mixer. It has fit in quite well into my tiny kitchen (it currently lives in the same drawer as all my cutlery) and I’ll look forward to using it in so many of my upcoming projects!
P.S: You might recognize this blue rimmed, enamel bowl that I brought back from my first visit to Japan. I’m happy to report that it’s held up well, and is in heavy rotation in my kitchen.
Information: Muji Hand-held mixer (in partnership Tescom, made in China) | Model number: MJ-HM1A |Price: ¥4900, ($43 U.S. dollars and $1356 Taiwan dollars) | Website: http://www.muji.net/store/cmdty/section/S2001304
This was not a sponsored post. All experiences, viewpoints and experiences described are my own. I also paid for all items consumed with my own money.