The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Bread machines

patstag's picture

Bread machines

Hi - this is my first day here and I'm trying to see if I am in the right place.  I love to make bread and I use a bread machine.  Will the recipes here work if you are using a bread machine or is this a site for the purist?  Thanks for any input you might have.

sphealey's picture

> Will the recipes here work if you are using a bread machine

> or is this a site for the purist?


Yes and no. People here love bread and want to help others make it better. When deciding what is "better" my personal Bread Code of Honor is "Make the bread you like most using the methods you are most comfortable with - then try something new".

Personally I started my bread journey making pizza dough in the bread machine, then tried classic french bread by hand, then started doing rye by using the bread machine for the dough (because it is so sticky). Now that I have a better handle on kneading I am doing more of the rye by hand, but I use the bread machine for sweet dough (e.g. cinnamon rolls), making soft sandwich bread overnight, and when I am in a hurry for dough.

Many of the recipes here will work in a bread machine with little or no modification. You have to experiment and be willing to throw a few away. Major differences:

  • the artisan process emphasizes a slow process, the bread machine fast
  • artisan: gentle kneading machine: stronger kneading
  • artisan: folding at intervals machine: no equivalent of folding
  • artisan: cool slow rising machine: warm fast rising
  • artisan: cook loaf on stone for crisp crust
  • machine: cook in bucket for moist loaf with soft crust

Many people say the "goal" of artisan baking is to make lean breads, with only flour, water, salt, and maybe yeast. Whereas most bread machine recipes include sugars, fats, and other ingredients to make a nice soft loaf. Personally I make all types of recipes by all methods using all ingredients depending on what I want to try next and (most importantly) what my family is demanding this weekend.

HTH. Feel free to ask away -everyone is nice here.


granniero's picture

I have been baking various things for may years and recently began trying the artisan,sourdough,etc route. Have made bread machine bread for years also, and with satisfactory results for what we wanted at the time. These days, I more often than not do the dough in the machine,take it out,shape and bake in the oven. You get a more regular looking loaf that way and it does allow a little bit of playing with your food.

I love this site and enjoy reading what everyone is doing and find it very helpful. I apply what I see here to whatever kind of baking I am doing at the moment. It's so interesting to see how we seem to be striving for that excellent loaf that makes us and those around us so happy. There are many ways to get to that finished product and the fun is in the journey,tho it's nice to be able to eat the reward at the end,even if that doesn't happen every time! We just keep trying.

Have fun with your baking,however you do it.   Ro in warm NE Florida 


sphealey's picture

I find it works the other way too: bread machine bread tastes a lot better when you make a poolish out of some of the flour and put it in the bucket before starting an overnight (timed) cycle for example. So I use various artisan techniques to improve the soft bread machine breads.


hellohelenhere's picture

Hi guys, my first post here... :-)  I've just acquired a bread making machine but it's lacking the instructions. Not having quite got the flavour of this forum yet - would it be ok for me to put up a thread requesting instructions for that particular machine, just in case anyone has them? It's a Breville BR2, rather an old model...