I think I gave my new Bosch Universal Plus mixer an adequate first trial this afternoon.
Last week, when I was effusing about how wonderful Hamelman's Sourdough Seed Bread was, Fleur-de-Liz came back with something to the effect that it was okay, but Hamelman's Multi-Grain Levain is really good.
This intelligence merged with my wanting to give each of my office staff a loaf of home-baked bread tomorrow, which is our last work day before shutting down until after New Year's Day.
So, last night I mixed the levain, soaked the soaker and, this afternoon, started making bread.
Now this reportedly wonderful bread has a bit over a pound of levain, a pound and a half of soaker, consisting of mixed grains and seeds, and a pound and a half of flours (plus water, salt and yeast). It's a somewhat wet dough, although it doesn't act like the actual hydration level of ... ready? ... 98%. That's because of the water in the soaker. The dough is heavy with coarse grains and seeds. The formula weighs 4 lbs., 11 oz.
I subjected the Bosch to a double recipe. That's over 9 lbs of dough.
Well, it pretty much filled the bowl of the mixer. I got nervous. The mixer yawned and just did it's job.
Hamelman's instructions, which are for a spiral mixer, call for 3 min. mixing on 1st speed and 3 minutes kneading on 2nd speed to get "moderate gluten development," whatever that is, and a dough temp. of 76F. At 3 minutes kneading, the dough was nowhere near developed, so I kept going. I stopped every couple of minutes, checked the gluten development and took the dough's temperature. It seemed to have my idea of "moderate gluten development" and the right temperature after about 9-10 minutes of kneading.
After 2 hours fermentation (at 69F) with a folding after about 45 minutes, the dough was really nice and developed - smooth and tacky but not sticky. I made 5 boules (5 at 1.5 lbs. and 1 of about 2 lbs, with the remainder.
I wonder if the kneading time with the Bosch is generally so much longer than Hamelman specifies for a spiral mixer. I thought it would be shorter than the KitchenAid, but then maybe 2nd speed on the Bosch is slower than on the KA. How much can I generalize from the bread I'm making to levains without such a high proportion of soaker?
Any comments, experiences and suggestions from users of Bosch or DLX mixers would be gratefully welcomed.
P.S. Photos and review of the bread are pending cooling, slicing, tasting, posing, etc.