Nothing comes close to freshly baked bread. One of the main reasons why it is such an experience is because preparing bread from the scratch involves lots of work. Very few individual have the time to mix the ingredients, squeeze the dough, cook the bread, and even wait for it to be ready.
However, with a bread maker, it is quite easy to prepare homemade bread with minimal effort. But the problem is that there are hundreds of bread machines in the market today. Therefore, this guide explains the points to consider when purchasing a bread maker.
Selecting the Machine
To begin, if you are undecided if you want to buy or not to buy a bread maker, get a cheap one. This will help you in the following ways: First, you will get started without spending lots of bucks. Second, you will get the chance to see if you love bread makers or not without spending huge amount of money.
Select a machine that has at least one year warranty. Anything less than one year shows that the manufacturer does not have a lot faith in the longevity and quality of the bread maker.
Lastly, don’t let the whistles and bells select a maker for you. I chose Zojirushi BB-HAC10 Home Bakery Mini after reading some good reviews on breadmachinemom.com. Always remember that the only characteristic a bread maker must have is a basic or white bread cycle, dough or manual cycle as well as a timer.
Size of loaves
The other consideration should be the size of loaves you intend to be making in your bread maker. You will get makers that will produce loaves ranging from one to three pounds, and many provide 2-11 different loaf size choices in a single machine. The important thing to remember is that bread machines breads don’t last as long as store bought breads; thus you may want to eat everything within 48 hours of baking.
Therefore, unless you eat lots of bread or have a huge family, you should consider buying a maker that makes a 1.50 pound loaf – this is enough for a family of 4 members. Bread makers that offer the 2 or 3 loaf size choices are good, as they work with a big range of bread-maker recipes, and will offer you the alternatives to make various-sized loaves for different occasions or needs.
Vertical or horizontal
Some years back, you could differentiate a loaf made in a bread maker form other breads as it used to have a tall, square shape. This has changed; many bread machines are horizontal loaf that is more like what you buy in a bakery. The important thing to remember is that horizontal loaf machines should have 2 kneading blades so that the elements can be well kneaded and mixed.
Setting and programs
In most situations, every bread machine allows you a certain level of programmability. The most obvious controls lets you to select your crust to be dark or light, bake dough without kneading or knead dough without baking. At the other end, you will find makers that have precise programs for various types of bread, which might take into consideration the type of ingredients you are using, baking as well as kneading times.
Choose a bread maker that makes the ideal size loaf for your requirements, and that has the ideal set of features.