How to use dough in food processors and stand mixers & not strain the appliance
Mariana's method of developing gluten in a food processor is so interesting. It has got me playing with whizzing dough in my old food processor.
However, it isn't all roses. My food processor is old (and is only 400W) and can't really handle it - I got to about 30 seconds of mixing with a 60% hydration dough (450g flour + 270g water) made with that W160 Italian flour and started to get black smoke coming out of my food processor! Luckily it still works, but it does smell like bad incense now, and probably won't last for all that long.
This got set me thinking as to what we can do when using our appliances when we're working with dough to lessen the strain on the machine.
My thoughts were, the obvious thing is to use a smaller mass of dough and to combine afterwards. Or to work with less stiff dough, but the tricky bit is to not overhydrate just to make it easier on the appliance.
For the food processor I thought it might be an option to pulse for 10 seconds then leave to rest for a minute, and repeat the cycle.
It is similar for stand mixers too. My 'very vintage' Kenwood had some documentation somewhere with a maximum dough weight to use (think it was 1.3kg), so I don't normally go above 500-550g of flour. Plus, I've also seen pictures on the internet of a card with the different recommended speeds for the different attachments, and if I recall the maximum speed for dough was listed as 2, and on that basis I haven't actually run it faster than that. It only has a 450W motor, but think the centrifugal speed control gives it some benefits when handling the extra strain.
What strategies work for the bakers here, who use home equipment? I guess the other alternative is to just buy beefier machinery, or lots of cheap old machines and replace them as they die!