Bread Machines?

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texasdiver
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Bread Machines?

Post by texasdiver » Tue Jun 02, 2015 8:31 am

Are they still a thing?

Anyone here still use one on a regular basis and is happy with it?

Any models to recommend or features to look for?

I see some on Amazon with a bazillion mostly good reviews but there is a really wide range in prices. Our family likes whole grain breads and I sort of thought about trying one this summer. Hard to know if one needs the $50 Oster or the $250 Zojirushi

jucor
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by jucor » Tue Jun 02, 2015 8:42 am

Definitely still a thing. We've been using bread machines roughly twice a week for 15+ years. Easy to use, lots of variety possible, good bread for cheap. The machines last on average 2-3 years for us before they tend to have issues -- typically bearings. Not worth repairing, unfortunately. Ours tend to be the $60-$80 retail models. However, as they're easily found essentially brand new for ~$10 or less in thrift stores (they're one of those things people buy or get gifted and do not use), we have 2 in reserve in our attic, so the lifespan is not a big deal (and we use ours more than most).

WhyNotUs
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by WhyNotUs » Tue Jun 02, 2015 8:52 am

If you go to your local thrift store there will likely be a nice selection of them cheap. You can see for yourself whether it is something you will use. Ours ended up there :happy
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DFrank
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by DFrank » Tue Jun 02, 2015 8:55 am

We have a Zojirushi, not sure what model but it's probably close to 20 years old. it's been relegated to a closet for some time now. For a while we used it pretty regularly to make pizza dough - there was a setting that allowed you to put all the ingredients in the machine and set it to begin the mixing/kneading/rising process so that the dough was ready when you came home. That was convenient, but probably not worth the cost of the machine or the counter space. We rarely used it to bake bread.

We bake bread a few times per month, and make pizza regularly, and I don't miss the machine. What I find is that if you are even a halfway serious bread baker you are going to find the machine limiting and will want to make bread with other more traditional tools and methods.
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aorin
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by aorin » Tue Jun 02, 2015 9:13 am

I have a Zojirushi as well, one of the wider models with two kneading blades. I use it only to knead my bread, which it does a very good job at. I use a custom program where it kneads/rises and then I take the dough out and let it rise again in whatever shape/pan I am using.

I have only actually baked the bread a few times in the breadmaker itself, but I didn't really like the results. You can remove the dough after the first rise, take the blades out, and reshape the dough, to get a more uniform loaf with no holes on the bottom.

omigog
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by omigog » Tue Jun 02, 2015 9:14 am

I've used my Panasonic SD-YD250 every week for years. Love it. Super simple to clean and use....especially as time goes on. I use flax, sesame, sunflower seeds, amaranth, quinoa, etc. Timer feature is handy when you want to wake up to fresh bread or have it ready for when you come home. I remember doing research on which model would suit me best and ended up with this one. Alas, I can't remember much about the research ;) However, I'm very pleased with it and think the payout of fresh and healthy(er) bread is totally worth it.

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just frank
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by just frank » Tue Jun 02, 2015 9:26 am

We love fresh bread, but the machine bread is always a little boring. The bottom line I think is speedy = no flavor/texture, slow = yum.

We have experimented with 'no-knead' recipes, basically stir up the ingredients with a spoon until it looks like a mess, and capillary action and time does the rest. Some of these were mix the night before, long slow rise dealies that made some of the best bread we have ever tasted.

Maybe we should take our machine to the thrift shop too.

Jonathan
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by Jonathan » Tue Jun 02, 2015 9:33 am

They're kinda gimmicky. When I first got one I used it frequently, raved about its utility, and wondered how I dared walk this earth without owning a breadmaker. They're limited in the type of loaves they can produce, and all of the different bread recipes end up tasting the same.

A Kitchenaid stand mixer with dough hooks can do the most laborious part of the breadmaking (the kneading), and a bunch of other tasks. We've had ours for years now, and use it frequently. The attachments we've purchased (ice cream maker and pasta maker) have seen a lot of use (fresh ice cream is insanely delicious, at around 1/2 the price of fancy premium ice cream). And it's a tank; your family will fight over it when you're dead.

texasdiver
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by texasdiver » Tue Jun 02, 2015 9:36 am

I kind of had a suspicion they were up there with the pasta machines as far as things one isn't going to use very much.

On the other hand we use our fancy Zojirushi rice maker all of the time.

Perhaps if we are going to get more serious about bread something like a Kitchenaid mixer might be a more functional addition to the kitchen than a bread maker. It's all the mixing and kneading that gets tedious and prevents me from making bread very often.

mlipps
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by mlipps » Tue Jun 02, 2015 9:50 am

You can also knead dough really well (and fast) in a food processor. It's my favorite way to make pizza dough especially.

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DaftInvestor
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by DaftInvestor » Tue Jun 02, 2015 9:56 am

My spouse bought a Zojiruchi Bread Machine perhaps 10-15 years ago and it is still ticking. The bread she makes is the BEST I've ever had when it is fresh (well - there may have been one or two nice restaurants in travels that have rivaled but I'll never tell her that....). The whole family anticipates the moment the bread is ready for eating after smelling it being made. A nice crispy crust - soft warm inside - put a little butter on it and I'm in heaven :happy
She makes lots of other breads in the oven over the course of the year as well - but enjoys the ease of using the machine for basic everyday breads.

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htdrag11
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by htdrag11 » Tue Jun 02, 2015 10:03 am

Whatever model you choose, stay away from the Betty Crocker model - we just passed it on to a friend who wants to play.

Wife also uses the no-kneading method to bake her bread, with her old old Kitchen Aid mixer. It is a test on her patience.

t3chiman
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by t3chiman » Tue Jun 02, 2015 10:11 am

texasdiver wrote: ... Anyone here still use one on a regular basis and is happy with it? ...
I had one of the better ones for a few years. It developed a leak in the paddle bearing. I switched to New York Times No-knead, baked in a cast iron pot. Never looked back.

jerkstore
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by jerkstore » Tue Jun 02, 2015 10:35 am

we use one around 3x a week, and have for around 15yrs. we make bread, but also pizza dough crust and breakfast rolls. i say we, but really it's my wife. i have no idea how to use it.

we're on our 3rd unit after 15yrs. one unit failed, the other unit accidentally fell off the counter and broke. we keep it on the kitchen counter at all times, rather than in a cupboard. currently using a Cuisinart CBK-100 2-Pound Programmable Breadmaker. had it for 2 yrs, so roughly 300 uses. works good. tastes great!

when we bought it, at the time, it seemed like either you buy one made in china or japan. none were made in the usa. my wife wasn't keen on spending $300 on one....so we picked from the chinese lot. so far so good.

Grt2bOutdoors
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Tue Jun 02, 2015 10:44 am

Received a Cuisinart 2 LB bread-maker as a wedding gift years ago, the first 3 years it got heavy use, now it basically sits in the pantry closet waiting to be dusted off and used again. The bread is delicious when first made, but since there are no preservatives it doesn't stay fresh for long, really it's made for immediate consumption.
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lightheir
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by lightheir » Tue Jun 02, 2015 11:13 am

Before you get a bread machine (I used to have one), I would HIGHLY recommend that you at least give Mark Bittman's "No-Knead Bread Recipe" (google it) a try.

Not only is it nearly idiot-proof, but it makes lovely artisanal type bread that when popped fresh out of the oven, almost everyone finds MUCH better and much more interesting than bread machine breads.

Once I learned to make the no-knead bread, I gave my bread machine away, as it was never needed.

Stonebr
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by Stonebr » Tue Jun 02, 2015 12:03 pm

I use mine about once a month. Had it for 8 years. Breadman.

Get one at Goodwill. They have a better selection than any big box store. :wink:

If you get a used thrift shop bread maker, you won't feel stuck with it if you find you don't use it much. You can just donate it again.
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dolphinsaremammals
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by dolphinsaremammals » Tue Jun 02, 2015 12:09 pm

Grt2bOutdoors wrote: The bread is delicious when first made, but since there are no preservatives it doesn't stay fresh for long, really it's made for immediate consumption.
I pop breads in the freezer, and defrost/warm them in the microwave. Otherwise I'd have a ton of stale bread.

physicsgal
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by physicsgal » Tue Jun 02, 2015 12:20 pm

I'm paleo now so I gave away my bread machine, but back when I was a gluten eating maniac I LOVED my bread machine. Fresh bread is so much better than anything from the store, even from a machine. It's so easy, just put in the ingredients, hit go and then, hours later, fresh delicious bread. If you have the time on your hands, it's more fun and more rewarding to make it yourself, kneeding, etc, but nothing beats the convenience and deliciousness of fresh break from your machine.

I will warn you, not sure where you live but I live in Colorado and I had to get a recipe from a German colleague because the recipes in the books and online don't work here because of the altitude. Hopefully you live somewhere that you won't have to deal with that problem. But once I got her recipe and used it consistently, all my loaves turned out delicious.

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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Tue Jun 02, 2015 1:56 pm

Slightly off-topic: "Fastest way to get a guy is through is stomach" or so they say....... :wink:
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dolphinsaremammals
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by dolphinsaremammals » Tue Jun 02, 2015 2:29 pm

I have a never used bread machine. I guess I should give it away, but my brother gave it to me. Worse, I had asked for it :D

Next topic, waffle irons.

dickyboy
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by dickyboy » Tue Jun 02, 2015 2:48 pm

Do you go to rummage sales ? We do and we see bread makers there all the time and they practically give them away. People lose interest I guess.

MP173
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by MP173 » Tue Jun 02, 2015 4:20 pm

About 45 pounds ago I used to make bread about 2-3 x weekly. Really good coming out of the oven. Today I make bread a few times, usually for special occasions, primarily in the winter, on weekends.

I used my breadmaker for mixing only. In other words, the bread did not bake in the breadmaker. I found the bread was much better baked in an oven rather than in the container/breadmaker. Here is my recipe for white bread:

1.5 cups flour
1 egg
a little olive oil
4 cups of bread flour (white flour)
2 tbs powder milk
2 tbs sugar
salt
a little more olive oil
honey
1 tbs yeast

After mixing cycle, remove, kneed, and place near the warm oven and cover with warm wet towel. Allow to rise for awhile then place in two bread pans and bake at 400 degrees for awhile, usually about 20-25 minutes.

Also, you can take this recipe and stretch out the dough and make long bread (similar to French or Italian loaves). I place the loaves on a baking sheet and brush with egg white which gives a golden brown color. We often split these loaves after baking, add garlic, and parm cheese and rebake for garlic bread.

My breadmaker broke a couple of years ago, today I use a Kitchen Aid mixer and allow the bread to mix for awhile, then place the bowl near a warm place for awhile, then mix again. I then remove the dough from the mixing bowl, kneed, and place in the bread pans. Cover the pans and place near a warm place again (warmed oven) and allow to rise. Sometimes I bake it after rising for an hour, other times I forget about it and bake it hours later....the bread will have risen considerably.

I love homemade bread, but it adds to the weight.

ed

Glenn
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by Glenn » Tue Jun 02, 2015 5:07 pm

I regularly use an ancient bread machine bought for $5 from GoodWill, but do it a bit differently. I use the machine on a manual setting that stops before baking, but does all of the mixing, kneading, and the first rise. The dough is then removed from the machine, allowed to rise again in a standard bread pan, and then baked in a standard bread pan.

This eliminates almost all of the work and produces a "normal" loaf with good crust, unlike the oddities I produced when using the bread machine from start to finish.

rgs92
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by rgs92 » Tue Jun 02, 2015 8:42 pm

I wouldn't buy one because I love bread and would eat too much of it.

b4real
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by b4real » Tue Jun 02, 2015 9:14 pm

We have the Zojirushi model that makes a normal looking loaf. We use it 2 or 3 times a week and haven't bought a loaf of bread for several years. Prior to that we had a Breadman machine for at least 10 years.

DFrank
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by DFrank » Tue Jun 02, 2015 10:07 pm

dolphinsaremammals wrote:I have a never used bread machine. I guess I should give it away, but my brother gave it to me. Worse, I had asked for it :D

Next topic, waffle irons.
We do use our waffle iron regularly. I don't think it's analogous to a bread machine because there really is no other way to make waffles.

Now, if you just don't like waffles I can't help you there. :mrgreen:
Dave

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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by jlawrence01 » Tue Jun 02, 2015 11:02 pm

Stonebr wrote:I use mine about once a month. Had it for 8 years. Breadman.

Get one at Goodwill. They have a better selection than any big box store. :wink:

If you get a used thrift shop bread maker, you won't feel stuck with it if you find you don't use it much. You can just donate it again.

Agreed. And most of the bread makers have been used maybe once or twice.

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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by itstoomuch » Tue Jun 02, 2015 11:15 pm

Wifey has gone on permanent bread making strike. She thinks that gluten is bad for me. :annoyed
She used to work in the Orowheat's development lab. She's used to do 12 loaves once a month, my happy time. :D

GL. I'm envious. :annoyed
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by dolphinsaremammals » Wed Jun 03, 2015 11:58 am

itstoomuch wrote:Wifey has gone on permanent bread making strike. She thinks that gluten is bad for me. :annoyed
She used to work in the Orowheat's development lab. She's used to do 12 loaves once a month, my happy time. :D

GL. I'm envious. :annoyed
You have hands and a brain, right :D Make your own bread :D

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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by nordlead » Wed Jun 03, 2015 1:29 pm

mlipps wrote:You can also knead dough really well (and fast) in a food processor. It's my favorite way to make pizza dough especially.
This was going to be my suggestion if you don't have a stand mixer. I prefer to use my stand mixer, but I have a dough attachment for my food processor too. Either device is more versatile than a bread machine.

I make pizza dough almost every weekend and it only takes me ~10 minutes to mix it all together and kneed it with the stand mixer. I make the dough in the morning and cook the pizza either for lunch or dinner. If I want extra tasty pizza dough I let it rise overnight. I'm thinking of learning to make a few different breads for those special sandwiches we make at home, we'll see if I get around to it.

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Clark & Addison
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by Clark & Addison » Wed Jun 03, 2015 1:57 pm

dolphinsaremammals wrote:I have a never used bread machine. I guess I should give it away, but my brother gave it to me. Worse, I had asked for it :D

Next topic, waffle irons.
So do we. I talked my wife out of registering for a bread machine when we got married eight years ago, so her mom got her one for Christmas. It has been sitting in the cabinet unused ever since.

I hear you on the waffle iron too!

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timboktoo
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by timboktoo » Wed Jun 03, 2015 2:09 pm

No need for a bread machine here. I love to cook, though.

- Tim

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Mrs.Feeley
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by Mrs.Feeley » Wed Jun 03, 2015 2:39 pm

To my way of thinking the big hassle of making bread is pulling out all ingredients, finding the recipe, measuring things, checking the recipe--which is harder now that I am older and means I must also find my reading glasses, and then re-checking the recipe and the measurements once I have found my reading glasses. A bread machine would never help me with any of those things so I have never had the urge to try one.

I do love to make the No Knead Bread Recipe which I have memorized so I don't need to find my reading glasses to make it. I make it in an old cast-iron skillet with a glass casserole dish lid.

Naismith
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by Naismith » Wed Jun 03, 2015 3:03 pm

We use it all the time. As others have mentioned, we definitely use it more for mixing and kneading than for baking per se. Pizza dough, cinammon rolls, french bread....

The cleanup factor is huge. It is much easier to wash out one non-stick bread pan than to clean a bowl PLUS a floured mat PLUS a pan.

I have a KitchenAid mixer which kneads doughs, but the bread machine is easier in the long run.

itstoomuch
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by itstoomuch » Wed Jun 03, 2015 3:16 pm

dolphinsaremammals wrote:
itstoomuch wrote:Wifey has gone on permanent bread making strike. She thinks that gluten is bad for me. :annoyed
She used to work in the Orowheat's development lab. She's used to do 12 loaves once a month, my happy time. :D

GL. I'm envious. :annoyed
You have hands and a brain, right :D Make your own bread :D
I may live to see the next day, but I would have slept on the curb. :annoyed
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by mountainhighhaircuts » Wed Jun 03, 2015 6:27 pm

You don't need one. I use a food processor with the regular metal blade and make awesome bread. I like to make sourdough, wife likes storebought yeast bread. All you need to do is mix the yeast, flour and water in the food processor for about 1-2 minutes, add water as needed to get the right consistency and then add salt. It takes about 5-10 minutes to make it up. Then let it rise for a few hours and bake until internal temp is 200 or so. Actual hands on work is 10 minutes max.

Also, I occasionally will put the bread in a solar oven outside and it takes several more hours but does not heat up the house. The bread tastes great, but is not quite brown like the oven.

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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by black jack » Wed Jun 03, 2015 9:00 pm

lightheir wrote:Before you get a bread machine (I used to have one), I would HIGHLY recommend that you at least give Mark Bittman's "No-Knead Bread Recipe" (google it) a try.

Not only is it nearly idiot-proof, but it makes lovely artisanal type bread that when popped fresh out of the oven, almost everyone finds MUCH better and much more interesting than bread machine breads.

Once I learned to make the no-knead bread, I gave my bread machine away, as it was never needed.
Same here - gave my bread machine away and make my own now - though "Artisan Bread in Five MInutes a Day" was my guide.
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by dumbbunny » Wed Jun 03, 2015 9:34 pm

WhyNotUs wrote:If you go to your local thrift store there will likely be a nice selection of them cheap. You can see for yourself whether it is something you will use. Ours ended up there :happy
^^This.
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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by dolphinsaremammals » Thu Jun 04, 2015 6:05 am

itstoomuch wrote:
dolphinsaremammals wrote:
itstoomuch wrote:Wifey has gone on permanent bread making strike. She thinks that gluten is bad for me. :annoyed
She used to work in the Orowheat's development lab. She's used to do 12 loaves once a month, my happy time. :D

GL. I'm envious. :annoyed
You have hands and a brain, right :D Make your own bread :D
I may live to see the next day, but I would have slept on the curb. :annoyed
Maybe I should marry someone who wouldn't allow me to do housework :D How did you manage that? :D

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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by itstoomuch » Thu Jun 04, 2015 11:04 am

dolphinsarmammals wrote:Maybe I should marry someone who wouldn't allow me to do housework :D How did you manage that? :D
Easy, she doesn't want anything, broken, dented, or scratched. :oops: oops.

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Re: Bread Machines?

Post by logicon » Thu Jun 04, 2015 1:28 pm

I have a Breville bread machine and use it about once a week. I enjoy making bread by hand but it's very handy to throw some ingredients in the machine (~2 minutes) and have a fresh loaf in 3 hours with no work.

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