The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Bread not turning out at all! 5th Attempt!

superstorm05's picture
superstorm05

Bread not turning out at all! 5th Attempt!

Okay, here goes...

I am new to this site, I found it searching for answers for the problem I am having. Today was my 5th attempt at making a loaf of bread, but its just unedible. Heres whats happend, from the start.

I am a complete beginner, even more of a beginner, than a beginner. I have had my bread machine for about a year and half, never had problems. I have been using it almost every day the last two months, sometimes twice a day, sometimes not at all, but its used frequently, and probably more often than I should. Its just a basic Breadman machine, nothing fancy. Not sure what information is useful so I am laying it all out for ya!

In June I purchased bulk active dry yeast off amazon. I knew I wouldnt get through all of it before it expired, but it was still cheaper than the store. So I froze half and put the rest in the fridge and left the second packet unopened on the basement stairs.

About a week and half ago, I made some pizza dough in the bread machine and it overflowed, starting smoking and I had to take it out, shut the machine off etc and I just wiped the dough off the heating element when it was cooled, with just a dry tea towel and it came right off. Tried the machine the next day and it was fine.

This past weekend I ran out of the usual King Arthur flour I used and Target only had Gold Medal. So thats what I bought. The first loaf I made I tried a new French Loaf recipe from the Breadmans handbook (only ever use recipes from that book). It didnt turn out at all. Didnt rise, flat, doughy on the inside, bubbly looking texture. Utterly gross. I thought maybe I had mis read the recipe and thought I would try again the next day.

Next day, different loaf, one I had made many times, the bread came out the same. Sometimes i can be careless about the water temp, so I thought maybe it was that, maybe it was me putting it on the wrong setting, perfectly possible with 3 kids running around, I do things like that all the time! Or maybe is was the yeast, because I knew at some point this would happen with the yeast.

So I tried again, paying attention to the water temp and the setting and the same thing.

I tried with the frozen yeast and the same. So I opened the second package and the same thing!!!

I am about to go try making some bread rolls using only the dough setting to see if its the bread flour or yeast or if its the actual bread machine.  The machine is getting hot, and appears to be functioning in its usual manner. The only big difference is the flour im using, but the bread is utterly unedible, I cant imagine it being solely the flours fault, because how would anyone buy it if it were that bad?

Please can anyone offer some advice. My next move is to buy different yeast and the KA flour again to try and eliminate the problems. I can only find a sales or replacement parts number for Breadman, I havent called yet, as I want to eliminate the flour and yeast first.

Advice much needed. Thank you.

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

Bread machines usually use instant yeast - not dry active yeast.  There is a big difference what yeast, and how much of it, you use in bread machines.  There are lots of Bread machine users here that can stear you in the right direction of how much active dry yeast to use in your bread machine.

superstorm05's picture
superstorm05

Hmmm, but I dont understand why all of a sudden it wouldnt work when its worked this whole time and the recipe calls for it.

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

with the Breadman we bought a few weeks ago used instant yeast for their recipes.  We gave the machine away as a gift so I don't have the book anymore.  The reason the machines use instant yeast is that is doesn't have to be activated with water and proved before using it or adding it to the machine.  Instant works much faster than active dry yeast and you use less of it if I remember correctly.  It is the only thing you have changed since June when these problems started - right?

If no bread machine experts answers the call, you might IM proth5.  Pat knows more about baking with them than most and will steer you straight.

superstorm05's picture
superstorm05

The recipes have several options for yeast, one being the active dry. Not sure what made me choose that one to start, but its the only one ive ever used and its always been great. The problems started last week, and ive used the yeast since june and it was fine. The only main thing that was noticeable other than the flour is the dough overflowing last week onto the heating element BUT it worked the next day with the KA flour and the active dry yeast that I had always used.  Since I think Sunday it hasnt worked at all. Its heating up and appears to be functioning, and since the weekend the only thing that changed was the flour. BAFFLED to say the least!

baybakin's picture
baybakin

The brand of flour matters much less than you think.  Gold Medal and King Arthur are both good brands, if it was something like store brand AP or such, I could see it being a problem.

It kinda sounds to me like the bread machine over-heating and smoking could have fried some circuits or otherwise compromised the machine's inner-workings.  I'd say try the "dough" setting and bake the loaf in a conventional oven, to see if that's the problem.  I think you'll find it's not that much harder, and far more rewarding in the long run anyhow.

superstorm05's picture
superstorm05

I certainly thought the flour being the problem was far fetched but its the only thing that actually was different from it working, to it not working. Trying the dough setting now right now.

superstorm05's picture
superstorm05

Well I just took a peek over the top through the glass and the dough looks great!!! Its got 30mins left but so far its looking like it should.  The difference between this dough, and the  previous five, were the previous duds all looked bubbly and flat. This one really looks like yummy dough. So im thinking its the heating element?? Anyone agree?

superstorm05's picture
superstorm05

Dough came out great, and is now rising for an hour before I put in the oven. I guess I need to replace the heating element.

baybakin's picture
baybakin

Or use the oven! I think once you have this bread it will be your first step towards the dark side world of artisan bread.  Once you start you'll wonder why you ever used the machine!

superstorm05's picture
superstorm05

I would love to, if I had the time. The great thing about the bread machine is I can throw all the ingredients in and leave it. The rolls I make are done in the oven all the time but with the amount of baking and cooking I do, the bread machine is a life saver. I do most of our cooking from scratch and trying to get everything from scratch including condiments. Its a process, especially with a large family.

I appreciate the help everyone. Will be on the phone with Breadman tomorrow to see if I can get a new part.