by Nivedita Harish
The bread machine is a modern invention that does not get half the credit it deserves. When you compare bread machines to blenders, toasters and coffee makers, they are usually the last praised appliance in the kitchen. If you think about it, it really is a shame. Great kitchen appliances are praised since they make your life simpler. Making bread is one of the most labor intensive things you do inside your kitchen, and bread machines take the time consuming process out of that, making it easy and fast.
Nothing beats eating a piece of warm, homemade fresh bread straight from the oven. It also has a delectable aroma too it. In fact, the smell of homemade bread baking in the oven can do more things than just fill your belly; it can enhance your mood and even help you sell your home.
Benefits of a Bread Machine
Bread machines have many benefits when you compare it to making your bread by hand. Some benefits include:
No Need for Kneading
Kneading is probably the most laborious step of the process of making bread. It’s tedious, tiring and you end up with tense shoulders and sore arms. Sure, it can be therapeutic and when you pound on that lump of bread dough, you can easily work out any frustrations you have. But, on a good day when you are only looking to make some homemade bread as fast as possible, the bread machine can do the tedious kneading for you.
No Mess to Clean After
Doing the process yourself, you have to use pots, pans, bowls, and utensils just to make one loaf of bread. All these things will need to be washed, dried, and put away. You use flour when making bread, which tends to get all over your floor and countertops. This can be very messy and will need to be cleaned too. However, when using a bread machine, there is no worry about having to clean up afterwards. The whole mess stays in the machine and there aren’t any dishes to wash after. Well maybe a measuring cup and a few utensils.
No Mistakes to Worry About
When making bread completely by hand, there are a lot of things that could go wrong. For instance, you could either knead the dough too much or not enough. You could mess up the yeast, which would result in not having the dough rise properly. Any type of mistake like this could make your bread come out hard as shoe leather. The good news is that bread machines make your bread nearly perfect and fool proof. You don’t have to concern yourself with kneading the dough or if the dough will rise or not. This is all taken care of by the machine.
Getting the Most Out of Your Machine
Sure, bread machines are pretty much fool proof, however, there are a few things you should do to get the best bread possible.
Choose Recipes Carefully
Not all recipes will work properly in a bread machine. By searching the Internet, however, you can find recipes that were modified so you can use them in the machines. You should also be able to find ready-made mixes perfect for using in your bread machine. These mixes are affordable, convenient, and nearly impossible to mess up.
Keep an Eye on your Bread
Make sure you don’t leave it in your machine for too long. Your bread will be at its best while it’s still warm. Many bread machines will keep the bread warm for hours after its done baking. But, if you leave the bread in the machine for long periods of time, it might end up soggy.
Use Yeast Made for Bread Machines
This is a must. Some recipes won’t indicate the type of yeast you should use. To always be on the safe side, when baking with your bread machine, use bread machine yeast for best results.