The smell of freshly baked bread – who doesn’t love that?? It makes you want to cut off a slice of the still warm bread, smear it with butter and take a bite. Delicious!
However, baking bread usually requires experience, patience and skill. However, with small children in the house, we would prefer to just press a button and the rest happens by itself… Is this possible?
Yes! Using a bread maker: Put ingredients in the baking pan, close the lid, turn it on, and after 3-5 hours the bread is done. In addition, you can decide for yourself what exactly go into the bread. You want a bread without salt for the complementary food start? You tolerate spelt better than wheat? Or should it be gluten-free? No problem!
How does a breadmaker work?
Basically, a bread maker (often abbreviated as “BBA”) works as follows:
- The lid is opened and the baking pan is taken out.
- The ingredients are filled into the form in the given order.
- The mold is placed back in the BBA (must usually lock in place), the lid is closed and the appropriate program is selected.
- Press start and the machine does the rest itself: knead the dough, let it rest so it can rise and bake it.
Before using the machine for the first time, it is advisable to read and follow the operating instructions for the machine in question.
Advantages and disadvantages of a breadmaker
- Very easy to use
- Very little work, because the breadmaker does most of the work automatically
- Can be used without prior knowledge
- Can be used for different types of bread
- Can usually also be used to make other types of yeast dough (z. B. Pizza dough), cakes or jam can be used
- Cheaper than baking the bread in the oven, as less electricity is used
- Timer function makes it possible to queue up in the evening and have fresh, warm bread for breakfast
- Ingredients can be chosen and combined individually
- No manual kneading and fingers stuck with dough
- No risk of burning the bread, the bread maker automatically beends the baking process
- Quick and easy cleaning
- There is more time for other activities
- The quantity or. Size of the bread is limited to the size of the machine
- There are sometimes great differences in the quality and features of bread makers
- Depending on the machine, the crust may not be as crispy
- With most bread makers, the dough hooks must be removed manually, otherwise they create holes in the bread
No more tedious kneading of the dough
How to bake bread in the breadmaker?
To make the bread really good, here are a few simple tips:
- Sequence of ingredientsFirst put the liquid ingredients in the machine and then add the dry ingredients. Finally, make a small hollow in the flour with your finger and put the yeast in it. The yeast must not come into contact with the wet ingredients, otherwise it will be activated too early. This is especially important when using the timer function of the breadmaker.
- Temperature of the ingredients: All Ingredients should have the same temperature if possible (room temperature). Therefore, weigh and let stand chilled and liquid ingredients already 1 hour before baking, so that they get room temperature.
- Keep the lid closed: The lid of the bread maker must remain closed during the rising and baking time. Even a short opening can lead to the fact that the bread does not become so good or even collapses. It is only possible to open the lid during the kneading phases in order to z. B. sprinkle in grains or nuts, and after the last baking, if necessary. Remove the dough hooks. Otherwise, the lid must remain closed until the bread is ready.
- Bread without a holeThe dough hooks usually remain in the bread maker until the bread is baked. However, removing then causes holes in the bread. To minimize this and for easier release from the mold, the dough hooks must be pulled out of the dough “manually” after the last kneading (unless your machine has a function to sink the hooks). When exactly you can remove the dough hooks depends on the selected program. This can either be found in the instruction manual, or you can watch the machine for a baking process and note the time on the display when the last kneading is finished. For the next times you then simply set an alarm clock. It is easier to remove the dough hook with floured hands. Then spread the dough evenly in the pan again.
- Release from the moldTo remove the dough hook, carefully turn the bread pan upside down and, using an oven mitt or cloth, grasp the drive shaft (where the dough hooks are located) and turn it back and forth a little, if necessary. Shake the pan gently. Never use a knife to cut the bread, as this can easily scratch the non-stick coating.
- Removing the dough hooksIf the dough hooks are still in the bread, they must now be removed. Do not use knives or other sharp objects for this purpose, but a dough hook remover*. Turn the bread over, insert the dough hook remover (the side with the hook) into the hole of the dough hook and tilt it at the edge. Now the hook can be carefully pulled out of the bread.
- Cooling on rack: After baking, take the bread out of the machine as soon as possible and let it cool on a cooling rack*. This way the crust stays crispy, because the bread still “sweats” a bit after baking. If the bread remains in the pan, z. B. during the keep warm function, the crust may lose its crispness due to the condensed water.
- Bread without holeThe dough hooks usually remain in the bread maker until the bread is baked. However, pulling it out then causes holes in the bread. To minimize this and for easier release from the mold, the dough hooks must be pulled out of the dough “manually” after the last kneading (unless your machine has a function to lower the hooks). When exactly you can remove the dough hooks depends on the program you have chosen. This can either be found in the instruction manual, or you can watch the machine for one baking cycle and note the time on the display when the last kneading is done. For the next times you just set an alarm clock. With floured hands, the dough hook is easier to remove. Then spread the dough evenly in the pan again.
More tips for baking bread in the breadmaker
- QuantityMake sure that the recipe quantity is suitable for your machine. If the volume is too large, the bread quickly collapses in the middle.
- FillingTake the baking pan out of the machine before adding the ingredients, because it is easy to miss something. This keeps the inside of the machine clean.
- Baking surfaceMake sure that the machine is placed on a stable and smooth surface, as it may vibrate during the kneading process.
- Quick programMany bread makers have a quick program, with which the bread is ready in less time. However, this means that the rising and resting time for the dough is shorter, which has a negative effect on the “fluffiness” of the bread, so it is better to choose an uncut program.
- NutsMore sensitive ingredients such as nuts, dried fruit or seeds are often added at the end of the kneading phase. Many machines sound a signal for this purpose.
- Dough: Especially for new recipes, it is recommended to check the dough 10-15 minutes before the end of the kneading phase. There could be z. B. Ingredients stick to the baking pan. You can loosen the dough with a silicone spatula* and drop it into the pan to mix it with the rest of the dough.
- CuttingThe best way to cut the bread is when it has cooled down, using a good bread knife.
How to clean a breadmaker?
The baking pan and the dough hooks must be cleaned after each baking process. A damp cloth or a soft sponge and some washing-up liquid is usually sufficient for this purpose. Don’t use scratchy sponges or aggressive cleaners, as these will damage the non-stick coating. Baking pan and dough hook must not be put in the dishwasher. You will also find cleaning instructions in the user manual.
Check the inside of the machine regularly for dirt (crumbs, etc.).). If there are tight spots in the machine that you can not get clean, cotton swabs or old toothbrushes can help.
Before using a new breadmaker for the first time, clean the baking pan and dough hook with a soft sponge and detergent. Also, run the machine once through a (fast) program without any ingredients so that possible odors and contaminants are eliminated during the first heating and do not get into the bread.