Bread makers and my own bread making

by Michael Smith (Veshengro)

Some while back I bought a Bread Maker, aka Bread Machine, at Lidl, a German discount store in Britain, for less than £30 (I know, very cheap indeed even when translated into US$ reading about $45) and it has been in regular use ever since making about two loaves a week. And this is at least for a year now, if not longer even.

In fact, I had been so taken with that particular kind of bread machine that, when Lidl had them again a couple of months later, I actually bought another one, as a back-up, so to speak.

As I like to use rather heavy flours in the baking, such as wholemeal, multi-grain, and rye, the baking of bread in the machine, while having otherwise good results always led to caved-in tops of the loaves. This is due to the fact that in the machine there is no heat applied to the tops.

I was not all that keen on that – well, now, after all this time – and have now (no! Stop fretting! I have not stopped using the bread machine) changed my use of the bread machine.

Now I use the machine to do the heavy work of kneading, thus saving me time, and the proving, and when if has finished, after an hour and a half, with all the kneading a rising cycles, I transfer the dough into a heavy bread pan, let it sit for another 30 minutes or so to rise again, and then bake it in the oven for about an hour and a quarter

Result: No more caved-in tops; just great (tasting) bread.

The reason for the caved-in tops is that my bread maker has a long tin, horizontally, unlike many other machines that have their tins, sort of, vertically set into the machine. This means that in the case of my bread maker is that the bread does not get heat from the top, as said, and hence the tops fall in in the middle.

Well, problem solved. Though, I have to say, it is a little more work.

© 2012