Home Bread-Bakers v006.n029.10

bread-bakers-digest V6 #28

Harper <RCMANN@delphi.com>
Tue, 18 Jul 1995 01:47:10 -0400 (EDT)
>As an introduction, I've been lurking for a couple digests, I'm
>developing a gourmet repertoire by attrition, and I started baking
>breads and biscuits about 6 months ago.  I have to do it the old
>fashioned way.  Most of the traffic here seems to be machine based.
>Am I wasting time and bandwidth here?- I don't think so, you folks
>seem to have a lot of expertice with bread!

I'm delurking to announce that I also don't own a bread machine.
I have nothing against them, but I find my current method
satisfactory.  I don't exactly make bread "by hand," though -- I
use a heavy-duty Kitchen Aid mixer to knead the dough, and a
microwave oven to raise it.  That's right -- a microwave.  I never
used to be able to make decent bread.  It always came out as heavy
as a doorstop.  Recently, I found a great book in the library
called "Bread in Half the Time" by Linda Eckhardt and Diana Butts.
It explained how to make bread using a food processor to knead the
dough and a microwave set on very low power to raise the dough.  I
tried it, and IT WORKS.  For the first time in my life I'm
consistently producing light, edible loaves.  One rising takes
about 15 minutes, sometimes longer if it's a whole-grain bread.
>From start to finish takes two hours at the most.  (Incidentally,
the book also has a section of bread machine recipes -- mostly
ones that involve making dough in the machine, then finishing by
traditional methods.)  I highly recommend this book.  After I
returned the library copy, I went out and bought my own.  (Insert
standard "just a satisfied customer" disclaimer here.)

I'm also curious to know if machine recipes can be re-converted
for traditional baking.  I think it should be possible.  The
proportions look right, so it's just a matter of getting the time
and temperature right.  And for that you can use other recipes as
a guide.  Try 375 F for about 40 minutes for a start.

Harper  *%*%*%*   rcmann@delphi.com
"Mostly Harmless" -- Douglas Adams