My Sort of Hovis

Much easier to buy a loaf for 20p or whatever it is these days.

It's usually a wee bit more.

I did just see one in the local corner shop reduced to 25p and thought of getting it for toast in the morning.

Then I thought I would be a monster hypocrite and bought a rustic crunch mix for the machine instead.

I have still never found the answer to why home made bread which is free of preservatives lasts for ever but shop bread pumped full of preservatives goes mouldy pretty quickly. Seems a bit counterintuitive.
 

Sixty

ADC
Moderator
Book Reviewer
Bread makers get bought and not used, maybe a relative has one they don't want. Try before buying.
Probably true. Mine's a Panasonic, and does a good job; very satisfying to produce the occasional masterpiece from it, as well as a house-filling yeasty aroma. It's also (as noted above) a great saver of muscle and brainpower, needing none of the punching, rolling, timing, warming and greasing and other buggering about that a manually-produced loaf needs.
 
I like the seeds and nuts hopper thing that tips them onto the loaf at just the right moment so that they are embedded in the crust not buried in the bread. I always thought that was a cool bit of technology - especially from a race that generally doesn't eat bread (but there again I am easily pleased/baffled).

Great if you want to make hippy new age style loaves with bits of twig, straw and pips in it.
 
You can also hold back a bit of flour and substitute a half cup plus of porridge oats. Makes for a heavier loaf which doesn't quite rise so much, nice for cheese sarnies's.
 
I've made a few loaves this year with varying degrees of success. I'm tempted to try a sourdough loaf. Whilst I can adequately google recipes, does anyone have any tips/tricks/hints based on real life experience?
 
You won't get a decent dark crust without sugar.
We've used a Panasonic for ten years or more. The only duff loaves have been down to operator error so not often.

The only way to get a real authentic crust is to use the machine to make the dough then bake it in the oven conventionally. If you use the 'dark crust' setting it seems to over cook the whole thing. Lighter settings are fine.

Messing around with the standard recipes we have had great bread.
 
The only way to get a real authentic crust is to use the machine to make the dough then bake it in the oven conventionally. If you use the 'dark crust' setting it seems to over cook the whole thing.
...which is how to get a great almost-black crust on top. Just add butter and Marmite.

Yes, machines won't replicate conditions in an oven as far as crust colour is concerned, but for everyday use can't be beat.
 
I like the seeds and nuts hopper thing that tips them onto the loaf at just the right moment so that they are embedded in the crust not buried in the bread. I always thought that was a cool bit of technology - especially from a race that generally doesn't eat bread (but there again I am easily pleased/baffled).

Great if you want to make hippy new age style loaves with bits of twig, straw and pips in it.

Well, the Panasonic arrived this afternoon and is at present clunking away to make a basic white loaf, medium size, medium colour.

If I get the chance I will take a piccy of the gastronomic delight prior to its scoffing.

Tell me peoples: The recipe that was in the accompanying manual had powdered milk, butter and sugar as ingredients, would this be normal, or just a thing for the American market?
 

jarrod248

LE
Gallery Guru
Well, the Panasonic arrived this afternoon and is at present clunking away to make a basic white loaf, medium size, medium colour.

If I get the chance I will take a piccy of the gastronomic delight prior to its scoffing.

Tell me peoples: The recipe that was in the accompanying manual had powdered milk, butter and sugar as ingredients, would this be normal, or just a thing for the American market?
I've not used powdered milk, that's silly.
You'll have to mess about until you get the size and crust you like.
 
Tell me peoples: The recipe that was in the accompanying manual had powdered milk, butter and sugar as ingredients, would this be normal, or just a thing for the American market?

Never seen a recipe with powdered milk and see no reason for it.

Never seen one with sugar either. Which is just as well as I haven't bought sugar for over forty years. Maybe it is a cheapskate/more accessible Septic variant on honey.

Lots of recipes suggest adding butter. A lot of bread mixes suggest it too. There is a reason but I can't remember what it is and can't be arrsed googling it. Helps with browning the crust possibly?
 

jarrod248

LE
Gallery Guru
Never seen a recipe with powdered milk and see no reason for it.

Never seen one with sugar either. Which is just as well as I haven't bought sugar for over forty years. Maybe it is a cheapskate/more accessible Septic variant on honey.

Lots of recipes suggest adding butter. A lot of bread mixes suggest it too. There is a reason but I can't remember what it is and can't be arrsed googling it. Helps with browning the crust possibly?
Adding butter and sugar is normal. Sugar helps the yeast and fat helps preserve it.
 
Never seen a recipe with powdered milk and see no reason for it.

Never seen one with sugar either. Which is just as well as I haven't bought sugar for over forty years. Maybe it is a cheapskate/more accessible Septic variant on honey.

Lots of recipes suggest adding butter. A lot of bread mixes suggest it too. There is a reason but I can't remember what it is and can't be arrsed googling it. Helps with browning the crust possibly?

I know that adding veggie oil to commercial baked cakes - sponges, muffins and similar - helps keep them fresh, if not truly fresh then at least it stops them going blatantly crusty and screaming 2 day old cake when you pay a couple of quid for a slice in somewhere like 5t@rbuck'5, for example.

Sugar for the yeast was understandable....I'll give honey a go instead though as I don't like sweet bread.

Powdered milk has me baffled though unless it is pandering to American taste buds.

The loaf was duly scoffed, a bit tall so I will have to work on quantities, post the pic tomorrow too much pfaffing with the new operating system.
 
Tell me peoples: The recipe that was in the accompanying manual had powdered milk, butter and sugar as ingredients, would this be normal, or just a thing for the American market?

According to the manual for our first Panasonic, the milk is in the recipe "to enhance the flavour and increase the nutritional value of the bread". You won't notice if you leave it out.
My mrs uses butter but I use olive oil instead. As for sugar, the book says "Sugar adds sweetness and flavour, adds softness and fineness to the texture, gives the crust colour, contributes to the keeping qualitiesand provies food for the yeast.
The basic recipes in the book are just a guide really, you can mess about with the ingredients quite a bit before you balls it up.
 
I use powdered milk as per the Panasonic basic recipe, and also full-fat milk for half of the water. Seems to add weight, and also (may be wrong here) makes the bread last longer. If you've just bought a machine, you're likely to go wild and bake all sorts of fruity, nutty, seedy stuff for a while, which is great, but getting a basic loaf just the way you like it (and not the way some expert tells you how you should like it) is a pretty good aiming point.
 

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