How To Use An Automatic Bread Maker / With Recipes
There is nothing like the smell of homemade bread baking in the kitchen. Baking bread is a long process requiring you to be home and labor for hours, watching the dough carefully the whole time. The temperature of the dough and your kitchen must be right in order for the bread to turn out well.
But with an automatic bread maker all the labor is taken away and you still get that perfect loaf of bread every time. Not to mention the nice smell of baking bread filling the house. A bread machine requires about five minutes of work to get a perfect loaf of bread. Just put the ingredients in, walk away and forget it.
A bread machine can even be timed to have a fresh loaf of bread ready for you in the morning when you get up. Now, you cannot do that by hand.
Bread Maker Recipe
First, get out your ingredients.
You will need a measuring cup and measuring spoons. For a basic loaf of bread you need water, flour, oil, salt, sugar, milk powder and yeast. You can use any type of white or unbleached flour and any type of oil for this recipe. Do not use whole wheat flour until you become more experienced with your bread maker. Whole wheat requires more water.
Use the following recipe for a 1.5 pound loaf of bread. Put in the wet ingredients first, in the same order as listed below.
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons of water
2 tablespoons of oil
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons dry milk powder
3 1/4 cup flour
1 3/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
After you have all the ingredients in the bread pan, insert the pan into the bread machine and set it properly. It should click down and be sitting solidly in the machine.
Close the machine lid and plug it in. The LED display should light up and show you what setting it is currently on. You can now hit the select button to get the type of process you want. Set it for a 1.5 pound loaf of bread. You can normally set the crust darkness as well, from light to medium to dark.
There are other advanced options, but these are not important now. When you have the machine set for a basic 1.5 pound load, hit the start button and relax. In a little over 3 hours you should have a very nice loaf of bread.
One very important thing is to push the bread maker far away from the edge of the counter while it is baking and mixing. The machine may bounce around a bit and you do not want the bread maker to fall on the floor.
After the bread maker is finished, it should beep loudly, telling you to remove the bread. Use a hot pad and carefully remove the bread pan from the bread maker. Be careful, the handle and pan will be very hot. Place a bowl upright on the counter and turn the bread pan upside down over the bowl. You may need to gently shake the pan in order for the loaf of bread to fall out.
Set the bread over the lip of the bowl and let it cool down. The reason for a bowl is that while the bread cools, if it was sitting on a flat surface, it would become soggy on the bottom. Letting it cool suspended will prevent that from happening.
You can serve the bread warm or wait for it to cool down.
Optional bread maker tips and ideas
You can have lots of fun with your automatic bread maker and mix up different ingredients. You can make a cinnamon raisin bread, bannana nut bread and others.
A very easy thing to do is simply substitute one cup of flour for the other ingredients. For example, you can substitute a cup of oatmeal or rye flour for a cup of wheat flour. You can use a half cup of rye and a half cup of whole wheat.
You can add raisins, nuts or spices to your bread to get different flavors and varieties.
Experiment with your automatic bread maker and try different ingredients and recipes. It is quite easy to use and normally quite forgiving.
Some ingredients absorb water, so keep this in mind when mixing your ingredients. You may need to add a little more water sometimes. With practice you will not even need to measure your ingredients precisely anymore as you try different things.
You can use whole wheat in your automatic break machine, but you will need to experiment with the amount of water needed. It is best to mix white flour with whole wheat. You can substitute a bit more each time until you have a perfect loaf of whole wheat bread.
Have fun and enjoy your automatic bread maker.
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