The Fresh Loaf

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Making bread with Electrolux DLX 2000

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Leon Valley's picture
Leon Valley

Making bread with Electrolux DLX 2000

My Kitchen Aid mixer broke several years ago when I was making a small batch of wheat dough, the gears stripped.  I am thinking of getting an Electrolux DLX 2000 mixer, but I am a bit gun shy at this point.  I have read a lot of posts here and don't have any issues about the quality of the DLX.  My question is, does the DLX really make a difference in kneading whole grain breads?  I can make a decent white bread, but I don't really enjoy kneading dough.  My whole grain breads always turn out really dense with no gluteny texture.  I would prefer to make whole grain breads, but I want a texture comparable to my lighter, spongier white bread.  I have plenty of whole grains, white wheat, red wheat, rye, barley, buckwheat and a good grain mill to make  a good quality flour.  I just don't want to spend all that money if it will not fix the bread texture problem.  Can I use all fresh white wheat or red wheat flour and still get a light loaf, or do I always need to add store-bought white flour?

richkaimd's picture
richkaimd

I use my Electrolux Assistent regularly to make mixed white and whole wheat breads.  My loaves use 9-10 cups of flour.  The machine does all of the work without any difficulty.  I have little doubt that it would have no difficulty with more flour.  I use my old Kitchen Aid for half that amount of dough, but never more.  One reason I love the Electrolux is exactly why I hate my KA - I hate struggling to add ingredients, even with its plastic shute.  That problem does not exist with the Electrolux.



Leon Valley's picture
Leon Valley

Thanks, richkaimd.  I also did not like the design of the KA, but like the videos that I have watched of the Electrolux.  I don't use a mixer much, when I make the occasional cake, I use my hand-held.  I appreciate your feedback.

phxdog's picture
phxdog

I think the type of mixer does make some difference. I love my DLX mixer, however, it think it really helps me more with kneeding larger quantities of stiff dough than it does with my bread's texture. I suggest you try an alternate whole grain recipe or two before investing in a heavier mixer if texture is your main reason for the purchase. Time and technique will probably have a greater inpact.


I've always called whole grain bread "breads of substance." Homeground flour that has not been filtered will naturally be more dense than its store-bought, white, processed counterpart. Wanting light fluffy wholegrain bread is a little like wanting to live in a lush green forest without the rain, they kind of go together. 


 Whole grain bread does not have to be a brick. I've had amazing success with a recipe from "Real Baking with Rose Levy Beranbaum." Moist, not bitter or too dense. You may find a few ideas to improve texture (too long on the first rise? try using some oil?) I hope this link works, if not Google it & you'll find the page.


http://www.realbakingwithrose.com/2006/11/rose_levy_beranbaums_100_whole.html


Good Luck,


Phxdog.

Leon Valley's picture
Leon Valley

Thanks, Phxdog.  I looked at the link and it was very helpful.  I'm pretty sure I need to use more water for a more hydrated dough, and add some oil.  I'll try an autolyse step and a mixture of AP flour and either fresh white wheat or read wheat flour.  I don't mind kneading so much if the results turn out.  I think my problem is that a drier dough causes the gluten to break some during kneading.  The King Arthur site has a similar recipe that looks good.  I will try some more by hand since I don't really want to spend that much coin if my problem is my method.

GSLawson's picture
GSLawson

Something I have found that helps my gluten develop better in whole grain breads is to hold off on adding any salt to the dough until after the autolyze step. Good hydration without salt interfering makes a big difference for me.


 

Leon Valley's picture
Leon Valley

Thanks, GSLawson.  I made a batch of bread today with some fresh hard white wheat flour.  I did a 30 minute autolyse, then added the sugar and yeast.  then after another 30 minute rest, added the salt.  I seem to have added too much water, but went with it anyway.  It was too dense, it rose slowly, but the result was moist, soft, and toasts nicely. It's enough to get me to try another batch tomorrow.  I will use the late salt trick on all my breads, I think.  Thanks.

smaxson's picture
smaxson

There are a whole battery of tricks for making whole grain breads much more pleasing, and the linked site has many. Adjusting the coarseness of your grind is a biggie if you are grinding your own, and generally speaking the finer the grind the better. I have a DLX and have found I only need it for larger batches--10+ pounds of dough I am not going to stir by hand, no way, no how. With the stretch and fold techniques which are available, for a couple of 1-1/2 pound loaves you do not need a mixer at all, although a mixer is handy. The DLX is nice though, and you can work nearly entirely from the bowl if you wish to keep mess to a minimum. It also seems gentler (less gluten damage from the bran?), but also a bit slower developing gluten than the KA (not a bad thing if you are going to do stretch and folds after an initial mix and autolyze, then add salt for a quick mix, then stretch and fold). Gentle handling is a learned skill, and is important if you wish to maintain maximum loft of your dough--and with high hydration is one of the many keys to the large holes most of us esteem so highly. I still will overmix and/or overhandle doughs if I don't restrain myself: I think whole grain makes the dough less tolerant of (mis)handling or overworking. You can make surprisingly light whole grain bread with a bit of restraint and simply baking until you get what you want. There is a learning curve above and beyond good bread baking.


It is a bit harder to make great whole grain bread consistently, and aging the dough is more important than it is for white breads (you have to neutralize phytic acid which is an impediment to proper digestion of the whole grain bread, while for white breads you are only using the natural enzymes to convert starch into sugar for the yeast and for crust browning). Reinhardt's Whole Grain Bread book is a good start, but there are good recipes and good advice scattered around in a lot of places. Anyway, a goodly length of time is an essential process with whole grain breads, with things like overnight soakers an important part of making the finished bread healthful.

Leon Valley's picture
Leon Valley

Thank you, smaxon.  Lots of good information here.  I did some more reading after my post and made a loaf today using some ideas I got.  I ground some hard white wheat grains and then sifted it to remove most of the large bran pieces.  I think they just cut the gluten strands and don't add much flavor.  I feel there is probably still enough bran left to make it healthy.  I used 350 grams of that and added 350 grams of AP flour.  Then I added 560 grams of water and let it autolyse for 30 minutes.  The texture had noticeably changed after the autolyse.  Then I added oil, sugar, and yeast and mixed (turned) with a spoon.  The elasticity was excellent at this point.  I turned 3 more times the next hour, then added some salt and a bit more flour.  Then I let it develop for another hour or so and put into a large loaf pan.  I let it rise for a few more hours and then baked when it was obvious it was not quite what I want to achieve (too much water).  The resulting bread was heavy, but moist, not crumbly, and had a delicious flavor.  I've made a lot of progress on just one try, thanks to all the help on this site.  I think I will have a really good loaf in just a few more tries.  One thing I did that I have never done before was to use palm sugar.  It really adds a nice flavor.  Dry malt sugar is also very good and adds similar characteristics as the palm sugar.  I used the fold and turn method I read about in a post about small baguettes.  I like that better than kneading on a board.


I am just amazed and so appreciative for all the ideas I have gotten from the people on this site.  I autolyzed for the first time, delayed adding the salt, and used the stretch and fold technique, all for the first time.  They are all so helpful.  I know now that I  can achieve what I want without spending $600 and having to learn all these things anyway.  Thanks to you, smaxon, and everyone else on this site.  When I make that perfect loaf of whole wheat bread, I will share all the details to everyone on this site.

highmtnpam's picture
highmtnpam

I really like my Bosch..it will knead heavy breads and lots of them.  Pam

Leon Valley's picture
Leon Valley

Thanks, highmtnpam.  I was considering a Bosch as well.  I think it was what the nice lady at the store used where I bought my Magic Mill 20+ years ago.  Still using that Magic Mill.  She showed me a slice of her bread.  It was amazing.  I'm going to keep working on my technique before I buy a machine, but if I get one it will be either a bosch or electolux.

Susan Lynn's picture
Susan Lynn

You might also consider a 10 or 12 qt Hobart or other similar planetary mixer. Hobart is the standard for commercial mixers, but a smaller one isn't much more expensive than a DLX. I used a DLX to make bread for my small store, but I would have bought a small Hobart if I had known of it then. Later, when I was doing large quantities of bread, I had a 30-qt Hobart. 

Leon Valley's picture
Leon Valley

Thanks, Susan Lynn.  I am not a commercial baker, but I would like to consider making a wood fired oven and getting into commercial breads at some point.  I will keep the Hobart in mind if I go commercial.  I am into my second try at whole wheat bread, and it's looking good.  I think I will get a much lighter loaf this time.  I obviously need to learn some more technique (like consistent measuring), but if I nail it, I think I can build a wood fired oven and do some large-batch bread making in my area and get a good customer base.  I will save your reply so I evaluate all my possibilities if I get to that point.  Thanks again.