Do you recommend a bread maker?

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DrippingSprings
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Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by DrippingSprings »

Do you recommend a bread maker? If so what brand and why? My wife is often gone much of the day while I am home. I thought that baking bread would be a nice way to do something nice for her, but I have no idea how to do it.

Thanks.
Gill
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by Gill »

I've used one for over 20 years and always enjoyed the results. A loaf of bread can be baked with only a few minutes work. I've had several over the years. The early ones were quite expensive but you can get one now for $40 or so. Our current one is a Sunbeam which has served us well.
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patrick013
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by patrick013 »

There's a forum on usenet for bread recipes.
All that stuff.

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campy2010
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by campy2010 »

DrippingSprings wrote:Do you recommend a bread maker? If so what brand and why? My wife is often gone much of the day while I am home. I thought that baking bread would be a nice way to do something nice for her, but I have no idea how to do it.

Thanks.
Very sweet. I've used the nytimes "no knead" recipes many times with good results. All you need is an oven-proof ceramic pot. I'm not a fan of single purpose kitchen appliances. With this recipe when you get tired of making bread, you can still use the pot for something else.

http://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/11376-no-knead-bread
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black jack
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by black jack »

I had a bread maker for almost 20 years, which I used off and on. I gave it away a few years ago after I came across the book "Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day"http://www.amazon.com/Artisan-Bread-Fiv ... utes+a+day. You can see the authors at work on Youtube.

The wonderful thing that book did for me was to show me how simple it is to make bread; now I make bread several times a week. I combined elements of the approach of Jim Lahey http://www.amazon.com/My-Bread-Revoluti ... nead+bread, made famous by Mark Bittman's publication of Lahey's no-knead approach in the New York Times a decade ago, specifically his long slow rise approach (using a very small amount of yeast - I typically use 1/4 tsp for 8 cups of flour). There's some research to suggest that this approach reduces the risk of gluten intolerance, but mainly I just like the sedate pace. I don't use the preheated pot part of the technique very often.

So I mix up some dough in the evening, leave it out to rise overnight, admire the work of the yeast next morning and then stick the dough in the fridge when I leave for work, take some out to rise when I get home from work and bake a loaf in the evening (so I get a bite of fresh bread before going to bed, and have whatever my wife hasn't eaten next day).

A machine could probably do this as well (except for the long slow rise?), but I find it satisfying to do it by hand (though using the no-knead approach doesn't really involve much "doing").

*edited to correct misspelling/mispersoning of "Jim Lahey"
Last edited by black jack on Thu Oct 01, 2015 6:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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tigermilk
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by tigermilk »

Personally I'd go with a KitchenAid stand mixer wth a dough hook. You'll end up making more versatile shapes of bread.
Stonebr
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by Stonebr »

I use a Breadman fairly regularly. No sweat. I always make the same kind of bread -- whole wheat -- but there are plenty of other options with a bread maker.

Suggestion: go to your local Goodwill or other thrift store. They usually have as many as half a dozen bread machines selling for next to nothing. Most of these are ones that were received as gifts, never used, and then donated after serving time in a cupboard for a few years.
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lightheir
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by lightheir »

Seriously try the Mark Bittman No Knead bread first. It far exceeds the quality of bread that pops out of a breadmaker, with trivial work.
ilovepiano
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by ilovepiano »

not recommended. will use a few times then will collect dust.
bread (artisanal) is too cheap and easy and convenient to buy. that's been my experience.
DrippingSprings wrote:Do you recommend a bread maker? If so what brand and why? My wife is often gone much of the day while I am home. I thought that baking bread would be a nice way to do something nice for her, but I have no idea how to do it.

Thanks.
nanoanalyzer
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by nanoanalyzer »

I love our bread maker, and the bread that comes out of it.

Unfortunately, it does not make bread on its own.

Sounds like you have some time on your hands. I would go all out and do as others suggest - make it the old-fashioned way.
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DrippingSprings
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by DrippingSprings »

Thanks for all the suggestions. Please don't hold back if you have any more.
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just frank
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by just frank »

another vote for "no knead"
Carson
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by Carson »

I vote no knead too. It's a pretty great recipe and the taste and texture is fabulous.

For other breads, I really like my Kitchenaid 600. I got it primarily for making bread and it is fab. Hefty price tag but it's been a useful multipurpose kitchen tool.
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galectin
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by galectin »

We have a Zojirushio bread maker that has been working reliably for a number of years. It is the model with a single mixer making a small loaf.

I set up a recipe in the evening and use the automatic timer to have a fresh warm loaf ready in the morning when we get up.
SrGrumpy
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by SrGrumpy »

A plug for an old acquaintance´s book on the subject, In Search of the Perfect Loaf

http://www.chewswise.com/in-search-of-the-perfect-loaf/
Dimitri
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by Dimitri »

Been there, done that (and still occasionally do that) with Jim Lahey's No Knead Bread.

Recipe in New York Times - http://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/11376-no-knead-bread

It isn't bad bread. Actually quite tasty. But perhaps a little bit rustic depending on your uses of the loaf. Simple and fail-proof for sure.

I own, and recommend, the Panasonic SD-BMS106.

Advert on Amazon (search for cheaper - just for your info) - http://www.amazon.com/Panasonic-bakery- ... B00DVZSVIY

It is a wonderful machine that makes a delicious fine crumbed loaf. Not cheap (I paid less but bought it overseas) but worth it.
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saltycaper
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by saltycaper »

I would not buy one. Then again, I dislike novelty appliances of any kind. They usually are not used often enough to justify their consumption of either money or space.

Besides, you don't need a machine to make bread.
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barnaclebob
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by barnaclebob »

tigermilk wrote:Personally I'd go with a KitchenAid stand mixer wth a dough hook. You'll end up making more versatile shapes of bread.
No, no, no. I have a kitchengrenade pro series with a "550 watt" motor and would never buy another for bread making. It is weak and strains under the load of more than a 2 loaf white bread recipe. The reviews are littered with tales of broken kitchenaids used for trying to make bread.

It will be replaced with an Ankarsrum Assistent as soon as I get a month to fit it in the budget.

Check the bread forums too, many dissapointed former kitchenaid owners.

The new kitchenaid 7qt size may be better but I'm done with them.
Last edited by barnaclebob on Wed Sep 30, 2015 11:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Pizzasteve510
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by Pizzasteve510 »

black jack wrote:I had a bread maker for almost 20 years, which I used off and on. I gave it away a few years ago after I came across the book "Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day"http://www.amazon.com/Artisan-Bread-Fiv ... utes+a+day. You can see the authors at work on Youtube.

The wonderful thing that book did for me was to show me how simple it is to make bread; now I make bread several times a week. I combined elements of the approach of James Levine http://www.amazon.com/My-Bread-Revoluti ... nead+bread, made famous by Mark Bittman's publication of Levine's no-knead approach in the New York Times a decade ago, specifically his long slow rise approach (using a very small amount of yeast - I typically use 1/4 tsp for 8 cups of flour). There's some research to suggest that this approach reduces the risk of gluten intolerance, but mainly I just like the sedate pace. I don't use the preheated pot part of the technique very often.

So I mix up some dough in the evening, leave it out to rise overnight, admire the work of the yeast next morning and then stick the dough in the fridge when I leave for work, take some out to rise when I get home from work and bake a loaf in the evening (so I get a bite of fresh bread before going to bed, and have whatever my wife hasn't eaten next day).

A machine could probably do this as well (except for the long slow rise?), but I find it satisfying to do it by hand (though using the no-knead approach doesn't really involve much "doing").
+1 baking is a great joy. That said, the machines make a tasty loaf without effort. Pretty good for daily toast type uses. If you are in the Bay Area, send me a personal message and I will give you one. We have 2 we never use, since we are pretty advanced bakers and prefer a bit more work for more reward anyway.
LifeIsGood
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by LifeIsGood »

Yet another No Knead fan. The bread is so much better than what I got out of my macine. I started out at http://breadtopia.com/. Great videos to walk you through. Eric also sells some of the basic supplies at reasonable prices.
rs899
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by rs899 »

I use a Breadman fairly regularly. No sweat. I always make the same kind of bread -- whole wheat -- but there are plenty of other options with a bread maker.

Suggestion: go to your local Goodwill or other thrift store. They usually have as many as half a dozen bread machines selling for next to nothing. Most of these are ones that were received as gifts, never used, and then donated after serving time in a cupboard for a few years.
That's exactly what we did about 5 years ago before I retired. Bought a Breadman Ultimate for $5 and used it almost exclusively to make "French" bread . It's really good stuff (though a Parisian baguette would be so much better). Even bought another Ultimate to back up the first one, but still haven't needed it.

I can imagine that hand crafted bread could be better if you have the time, but using a Breadman to replace store bought chemical laced "wonder" bread is so easy and cheap...why not?
skylar
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by skylar »

We have a bread machine and love it. We make at least one loaf a week, sometimes more. My wife also uses it to start the dough on some bread that she finishes in the oven (like challah). It's a definite time saver for us, since it takes about five minutes of work to make a regular loaf, and we can even run it overnight if there's no eggs in the recipe.
joebh
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by joebh »

Try making bread without an appliance first.

If that doesn't work out, then and only then resort to purchasing a specialized appliance.
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JupiterJones
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by JupiterJones »

barnaclebob wrote:
tigermilk wrote:Personally I'd go with a KitchenAid stand mixer wth a dough hook. You'll end up making more versatile shapes of bread.
No, no, no. I have a kitchengrenade pro series with a "550 watt" motor and would never buy another for bread making. It is weak and strains under the load of more than a 2 loaf white bread recipe. The reviews are littered with tales of broken kitchenaids used for trying to make bread.
Maybe we've been lucky, but our KitchenAid has made bread with no problems so far. <knocks on wood>

So yeah, if you want bread and you want a gadget, I'd go with a stand mixer over a bread machine. That way if you decide you don't like bread making, you still can use the gadget for other things. (Like Alton Brown, I'm generally not a fan of "single-purpose" kitchen devices--especially when they take up a lot of room!)

And I'd recommend throwing in a copy of "Your Daily Homemade Bread: Easy Stand Mixer Bread Recipes". The recipes actually have you use a specific type of yeast that is basically the same kind used in bread machines, so you don't have to do all the kneading, waiting, punching down, waiting, and so on. It's one quick rise and you're ready for the oven.
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dickyboy
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by dickyboy »

Check out a few rummage sales. I see these things at sales all the time and they practically give them away, and they look new. obviously an item that people lose interest in very quickly and then they become dust collectors. We had an Oster that worked well while we were using it.
Glenn
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by Glenn »

I bought a bread machine from GoodWill. I toss the ingredients in, let it do all the mixing, kneading, and the first rise. I then take the dough out of the machine, punch it down, put it in a loaf pan, and bake. I get an excellent standard loaf (much better than having the machine bake it) and the machine does 90% of the labor.
lightheir
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by lightheir »

No knead bread:

Image

Breadmaker bread:
Image


Yes, the difference is that stark, and yes, the no-knead bread comes out that good and tastes even better fresh out of the oven than you can imagine. If you get it fresh out of the oven, it's superior to even bakery bread because it's so vibrant and fluffy.

It's also stupidly easy to make - a 4 year old can mix the ingredients no problem:
http://steamykitchen.com/168-no-knead-b ... sited.html

I actually do mine even more easily. I do the entire thing in the same pot that goes in the oven so there is zero wet dough to cleanup and no extra dishes. I mix up the stuff, wait 8-12 hrs (doesn't have to be remotely precise), then shape it into a ball with some extra flour right as I preheat the oven. Then bake. It comes out looking and tasting exactly like that image above, every time, no tricks required.
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DrippingSprings
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by DrippingSprings »

I am going to try the no knead bread in the near future. I'll let you all know how it turns out. Depending on how things work out, I might check out the Goodwill store for a machine.

I do love rye bread. So, I googled "no knead rye bread" and apparently that works as well as a wheat bread; I read somewhere that rye breads don't work well in a bread maker.
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DrippingSprings
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by DrippingSprings »

Pizzasteve510 wrote:
+1 baking is a great joy. That said, the machines make a tasty loaf without effort. Pretty good for daily toast type uses. If you are in the Bay Area, send me a personal message and I will give you one. We have 2 we never use, since we are pretty advanced bakers and prefer a bit more work for more reward anyway.
Thank you very much for your offer of a bread maker. However, I live over 1,000 miles from CA. But, thanks again.
takeshi
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by takeshi »

DrippingSprings wrote:Do you recommend a bread maker?
As with any recommendation on any topic, it all depends on the needs/wants of the individual. If convenience trumps all else for the person then a bread maker could be a good fit. If not, there are other options that may be better that have already been covered above. I prefer the versatility of my Kitchenaid and I'm not a fan of what the breadmakers I've used produce. Others make bread without a single purpose or even multipurpose appliance (no knead, etc). It would really help to have more details from you in order to make a meaningful recommendation.
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Re: Do you recommend a bread maker?

Post by ShenziNation »

We've been using this for 2 months now, haven't bought any bread from the supermarket bakery or shelves since.

Hamilton Beach HomeBaker 29882 Breadmaker, Black http://www.amazon.com/dp/B005EPRF1I/ref ... breadmaker

Have made no sugar cinnamon-raisin, cranberry, pumpkin, walnut, sunflower loaves. Use King Arthur or any high quality bread flour. Makes for very nice sandwich bread.

A good friend who recommended this machine says he uses the machine to mix and rise the bread, and then bakes in an oven. You won't get the square loaf then.

The timer function is great, wake up on Sundays to fresh breads, fry some eggs and some French Press coffee. Heaven!
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