The Fresh Loaf

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Oven baked Bread Machine dough - conflicting info

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KCF's picture
KCF

Oven baked Bread Machine dough - conflicting info

I'm new to breadmaking, and have been using my bread machine to both mix & bake the loaves.  However, I would like to try baking a loaf in the oven, as the bread machine loaves are usually too tall for my preferences.

I've seen conflicting information on Internet searches, and am hoping someone here can help.

If I'm using a basic 1.5 lb bread machine loaf recipe, will that create one or two "oven" loaves?  And is that a 9x5 loaf or the 8.5 x 4.5 loaf?

Also, if anyone has any tips for mixing in the machine and baking in the oven... how many rises, "folding" the bread, etc.  It would be well appreciated.

Thanks in advance. 

mrfrost's picture
mrfrost

Loaf pan size and hence, loaf shape, is sometimes a matter of preference. If you like a high rising, mushroom shaped loaf, then you may find recipes directing you to put up to 2 lbs of a somewhat basic dough in a 8.5 x 4.5 pan(eg, the Semolina Sandwich loaf here at TFL, Reinhart's BBA Light Wheat, etc). These same recipes may do well for a more squarely shaped loaf when the same amount of dough is baked in a 9 x 5 pan.

In general though, for a basic, well rising white loaf, imo, 1.5 lbs of dough is about when you may want to consider the 9 x 5 pan. Again, depends on the recipe, and the size pan(s) that you have at hand.

I started out baking bread the way you are(machine/oven), and luckily I happened across the KAF website(kingarthurflour.com) early in the journey. They have seemingly hundreds of recipes(tested, proven, highly reviewed), with great instructions covering exactly what you are asking. Many/most of the recipes are accompanied by great blogs/graphic tutorials. Most all of these recipes are written with the amateur baker in mind, and also great and timely feedback is available from the author. You also will not be encumbered with various conflicting opinions, methods, philosophies, etc.

Great advice here at TFL too.

Welcome, and good luck.

ps: If you do use the KAF website, please be aware that almost all of their yeast bread recipes call for using their King Arthur All Purpose flour(KAAP), not their bread flour. The KA Bread Flour is stronger than many prefer using for most breads. In my experience, Gold Medal Better for Bread flour is usually a much less expensive and perfect substitute for the KAAP.

shastaflour's picture
shastaflour

Hi KCF,

We did our bread just as you are for a long time. The bread machine is a terrific mixer, but like you, we weren't totally satisfied with the baking portion (or the tall loaves our first machine made).

With 1.5 lbs of dough, you'll get one loaf. One 8.5 x 4.5  pan should be just fine. You can also use the larger 9 x 5 pan, but the bread might not get as high. We've done both, and of course you can experiment to see what you like best.

Your bread machine should automatically mix and do two rises if set on the dough cycle. When it stops, take the dough out of the machine, shape it nicely and put it in your loaf pan. Then, let it rise or "proof" one more time. Just before it looks like it has doubled in size, preheat your oven. (That way it won't overproof and collapse.)

There are different methodologies/baking temps and times for loaves in the oven, but for standard sandwich bread, 350 degrees (F) for 30 minutes or so should work just fine. If you're using glass pans, drop the temp by 25 degrees. A digital thermometer will help you know if it's done: 200 degrees is generally considered about perfect, though we like to pull ours out at 190 or so. You might want to cover the loaf with foil for the last 10 minutes or so unless you like a really brown top.

There are some great video links on TFL about shaping loaves. Do a search and I'm sure you'll find a few. This will help you to get the best bread possible.

When you're feeling adventurous, you can keep the pans in the cupboard and start trying all sorts of artisan-type breads as well. Your bread machine will be a great mixing friend and help make the process all that much easier. Also, oven baking is somewhat more forgiving than baking in a bread machine. You'll be able to change your bread formulas to some degree and still find success in the oven. 

I'm far from an expert, so look forward to hearing what others chime in with. In the meantime, happy baking! :)

- Marguerite

KCF's picture
KCF

Thanks to both of you!  You've given me some places to check and some good tips.  Many years ago, I used to make bread manually (kneading by hand, etc), but unfortunately, I don't have the strength in my hands that I had when I was younger, and even though I'm once again enjoying the taste (and aroma!) of homemade bread, I'm not that satisfied with the texture and shape of the loaves from the bread machine.  

I've also looked at some artisan bread cookbooks, but I need to work on my basic skills a bit more before I get into that.  In the meantime, I now have some resources to check out -- so thanks again for replying!