It has been a long time since I published anything on this board
and I feel that I owe you an explanation. I have had a health
problem which caused me to weaken over a period of two years.
The situation got much worse during the last two months and
something had to be done. Medical studies found the problem was
caused by a small gland which had become enlarged due to a
benign tumor. Last month, the offending gland was removed and
recovery was swift and complete! I am feeling very well and am
prepared to return to talking with you about bread and related
I would like to thank all of you who sent cards or notes with
your wishes for a rapid recovery. It is obvious that they all
Another piece of good news. We are reducing the price of brand
new top of the line Zoji S-15A machines to $239, including
shipping and handling! If you have any questions, contact me via
e-mail, or call toll free at 1-800-641-9093.
I have just gone through a number of questions that have been
posted recently. Here is my response to two that seem to occur
Q1. Who needs bread machines? It is easy enough to knead dough
by hand and it is good exercise.
A1. I am very sensitive to this type of question. We have been
operating a Rehabilitation Company for 15 years. We started
working with automatic bread machines in 1992, as a way to help
some of our clients to improve their self esteem, following work
related accidents. The results have been much better than we
would have expected. The ability to produce bread is a very
gratifying experience and it does not require that the
individual do it by "hand". Some of our clients have only had
one hand (in one case as a direct result of a work related
accident). Others do not have the use of both hands because of
carpal tunnel syndrome, arthritis of the hand, wrist, elbow or
shoulder. Some (like myself during the past couple of years)
simply do not have the needed strength or endurance to work at
kneading a batch of dough. For such individuals, the bread
machine provides the means to produce excellent breads for
themselves, their families and friends. We consider that to be a
significant improvement in the quality of their lives.
There are cases in our experience, where young people with
mental impairment or short attention spans, are unable to
contribute anything to family life. Some of these, with our
help, have become the bread bakers for their households!
If any of you know of individuals who might be able to use help
with this type of problem, please have them contact us. There is
no charge to do so. If we can, we will help. Our toll free
number is 800-641-9093.
Q2. My kneading blade is stuck on the shaft in my Zoji bread
pan! How do I get it off?
A2. One of the major design features of the Zoji S-15 and S-15A
machines is that the kneading blade locks onto the shaft so that
it cannot come off in the bread. When I first started reading
notes on the Prodigy bulletin board about bread baking, in 1992,
there were frequent outcries from individuals who had baked
breads which they gave to friends, only to learn that their
kneading blade was gone! The engineers at Zoji eliminated that
problem by designing a bread pan shaft and kneading blade where
the blade locks onto the shaft and cannot come off in the bread.
To avoid a problem removing the kneading blade, try this: put
the kneading blade onto the shaft in the bread pan; turn the
blade clockwise and try to remove it. You cannot! Turn the blade
counterclockwise and try to remove it. Again you cannot! Hold
the "T" bar at the bottom of the baking pan and move the blade
back and forth to notice how far it can move before it engages
the shaft. Put it in the middle of its range of motion and
easily lift it from the shaft. The Zoji manual says that it is
not necessary to take the blade out after each use. I disagree
with this! When dough bakes into the space between the shaft and
the blade, it becomes more difficult to remove the blade. After
baking, put a little dish soap and warm water into the bread
pan. Let it stand for a few minutes. Hold the bread pan "T" bar
with one hand and move the kneading blade back and forth. Set
the blade in the middle of its range and lift it out. Thats all
there is to it! Some users, my wife included, put a little
cooking oil onto the shaft in the bread pan. Then she puts in
the kneading blade.
Best wishes to you all.
Irwin/Delta Rehab/Using Zojis