The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Bread Machine for Wheat or Rye Flour

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balabusta's picture
balabusta

Bread Machine for Wheat or Rye Flour

I am an experienced home bread baker who routinely bakes artisan breads, whole wheat, multi-grain, and SD rye breads.  I have successfully used my KA, Bosch Universal, or even my Cuisinart for all types of dough.  


After reading King Arthur's Whole Grain cookbook, I was struck by their assertion that when they field-tested three methods for kneading:  bread machine, electric, and hand, the bread machine consistently demonstrated superior results. 


When I bake bread, I incorporate a preferment, autolyse and, depending on the dough, fold and stretch.  I wonder if anyone has had successful experience with a particular type of bread machine.  Having read Amazon bread machine reviews (I always read 5 and 1 star reviews), I am more confused than ever.  I do not necessarily want to bake my bread in a bread machine, but I would enjoy the luxury of being able to program a series of good kneading times.


Thanks,


Diane

genem5329's picture
genem5329

Hi Diane,


Fifteen years ago I turned my mixing and kneeding over to my bread machines.  I have worn out about 5 machines so far, so I have used different brands, but they all have basic categories for different types of breads.  I use the dough cycle and mix and kneed for 10 minutes and then pop the mess into a plastic bucket for the rest of the process.  This has worked for just about every type of bread I make.  With 4 kids in school I just don't always have the time to spend with the mixing and kneeding, I usually make from 3 to 5 various types of loaves every day, my kids use up one loaf just for school lunches, another for morning toast and after school snacks and then we usually finish off a loaf for dinner, feeding between 6 and 10 people.


I use a preferment on most breads and on occasion have even let them rest overnight in the bucket in the fridge.  Some breads have multiple stages so they will go into a plastic container for a 4-6 hr. development and then back into the bread machine for the next stage before being returned to the raising container.  I very seldom go through the whole dough process in the bread machine and never to bake.  So basically I use the bread machine only for mixing and kneeding and it always does a good job at that.


Gene






balabusta's picture
balabusta

Thanks, everyone, for sharing your experiences with the bread machine.


Diane


 

deweytc's picture
deweytc

I having been using my Zo X20 to knead my dough because of a physical handicap.  I know that the machine takes a beating, because I have used up to 5-7 cups of flour.  I bring my SD preferment from the fridge and pour it into the pan immediately.  By doing it this way, the dough stays colder longer, and towards the end of dough cycle, it has warm up.  I bake 6 loaves at a time, every week, over the last several years.  Getting 3 loaves per dough cycle.  The second batch, I keep feeling the side of the pan to make sure that it is not getting to hot.  I wished there was a pause cycle, so I could cool down the pan if it is getting to hot.  I bought the Zo when it first came out, so it has seen lots of usage.  The old saying is, "It takes a beating, but keeps on ticking!".  Now, that I said this, the Zo will stop working....


Duane

althetrainer's picture
althetrainer

I don't use bread makers but we have three of them.  I bought them for my husband because he can't hand knead nor he knows how to use my Kitchen Center.  We used to have a Panasonic that worked very well until my husband decided to use his Russian Black bread recipe in it.  Not sure if it was just time or the dough was too stiff; the motor died when trying to knead the dough.  Then we have different machines but not many of them could handle my DH's recipe.  Until we bought an old Sanyo and now it's the winner.  I don't particularly like the Sanyo but it has a very powerful motor and it handles DH's Russian bread recipes just fine.  In fact, it's so powerful that we have to make sure not to leave it too close to the edge of our countertop.  One day we forgort how powerful it was and it ended up on the floor, still kneading!  Having said that, DH doesn't bake his breads in the machine.  I've taught him how to use a dough cycle, shape the loaf and bake.  I make all sorts of sourdough breads with my Kitchen Center but DH enjoys his own experience and love affair with his bread makers!  :-p



swtgran's picture
swtgran

I have an old Regal that I cannot believe still works.  I have had to have the bucket gasket replaced and a belt.  It had been used to make bread a minimum of 3 times a week for years, then I started using it mainly for kneading.  I keep using it occasionally because I want to see just how long this thing will go.  I think it is about 19 years old.


I have had a couple of other bread machines and I think the best mixers and kneaders are the ones that make the tall square loaves.  I have found the horizontal ones seem to need a little help incorporating all the flour.  I think the narrow shape allows for better kneading contact. 


The vertical ones are harder to come by. so this past weekend when I found a brand new Sunbeam at a flea market for $15 I snatched it up. Terry