Posts Tagged ‘bread machine’

You stumble upon the best ideas while surfing sometimes.  I was looking for a video on making orange marmalade, wanted to give it a try so that I knew I would know how to make it if the question ever came up in conversation, a conversation with whom I’m not sure.  I found several posts on YouTube and watched a couple of them.  The second how-to came from fiveeurofoods.  I left a comment on the website and the author/star of the show responded immediately with a suggestion of a bread recipe after I noted a fresh loaf would be needed to eat with the marmalade.

They used semolina (fine corn flour) and wheat flour in the recipe, claiming it stays soft twice as long.  There is a canister of semolina ready to be called to duty in the pantry, so I gave it a shot.

This is merely a substitution of a bread-machine recipe for regular old white bread.  Use half semolina and half bread flour.  That’s all.  There was also a lonely partial Poblano pepper becoming mummified in the fridge, it was diced and added to the flours destined for the machine.

The bread was delicious!  And true to the claims of its alchemist, it was soft longer than my other white breads (made by machine or oven), even the last piece had pliability left in it.  Semolina is not just for pasta anymore.

The orange marmalade was not as successful.

I bought navel oranges (first mistake) and washed them thoroughly.  Five oranges were zested to avoid the bitter pith, I removed all the bits of white and chopped up the flesh, really the membranes were the only structural parts left.  I put the chopped orange, all the zest (second mistake) and a little water into my pot to slowly boil.  Once it resembled hot mush I added sugar, and more sugar (third mistake), then added a gelatin packet (may or may not have knocked against these efforts).  It cooked, I tasted.  More sugar, it’s too bitter.

Darn zest.  Why didn’t you tell me you were going to ruin my batch of marmalade?  Hmm?  It couldn’t answer me, but I tried anyways to interrogate.

The type of orange you use is VERY important.  It’s the same with berries, the initial quality of the fruit will only be amplified in the jam.  That’s why I make strawberry jam only when local berries are available.  Force-ripened and half-frozen trucked-in strawberries will not do.  I would grow them myself if I could.

The next batch of marmalade will need better oranges.

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I’ve been reading The Great Holiday Baking Book  by a woman named Beatrice Ojakangas.  I absolutely love this cook book.  It sits inside my bedside table, waiting for me to continue drooling over recipes each night.

image from Amazon - click to view Amazon page

I know Mrs. Ojakangas lives in Minnesota somewhere with her husband.  She’s been on several television shows, including Martha Stewart Living where I first found out there was a Scandanavian chef out there.  Being half Finnish myself, I was instantly curious.  That curiosity from my late teens did not disappear.  In the last year since I began this blog I have aquired three of Beatrice’s cook books.  The Great Holiday Baking Book is the second one to be poured over with much enthusiasm.  Every chapter has a gem, a recipe that looks too good not to try, and last night I came across the caraway rye bread in the Father’s Day chapter.  She explains in the book that the bread-machine recipes were tested on different brands of machine, and they all turned out great.  My bread machine baked this delicious loaf with ease.

Starting the batch after dinner in my ADD time of night wasn’t the best idea.  I made a bold move to lay down in bed and listen for the timer on the machine to wake me up.  Why not leave the loaf in the machine?  Well, there’s a lot of heat built up that will continue to bake your bread, it may be a dry brick by morning.  I didn’t want to chance it.  I set the timer on the microwave to go off a few minutes later than the bread machine as a back up.  I’m sure Hubby was not impressed, he fell asleep while the bread was baking and I caught a squinting eye upon my return from dumping out the baked loaf onto the cooling rack.  Everyone was back to dreaming about puffy clouds and wooly sheep in no time.

Finnish Caraway Rye Bread

Adapted from The Great Holiday Baking Book by B. Ojakangas

The modifications I made to the original recipe are noted below.

  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 Tbsp molasses
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp unsalted butter 2 Tbsp salted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 2 tsp caraway seeds
  • 1 cup dark rye flour, stone ground is what I used
  • 2 cups bread flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp dry active yeast  1 Tbsp dry active yeast

I found out through Nancy on her blog that I could must use salted butter in my breads to yield a better flavour, I keep the salt measurements the same from the recipe.  This has been the best trick in baking bread since I’ve started making my own bread.  So go ahead, you’ll be glad you did too!

If you own a bread machine, put the ingredients in the canister in the order shown above.  If your manufacturer insists on liquids being on top, reverse the whole list.  Otherwise, read your manual.  I did mix the two flours in a bowl first to get the rye bits distributed evenly.

That’s the hardest part.  All you have to do is set the machine to 1.5 LB and medium crust on its regular cycle.  Push START.  Now try to stay awake to let the little loaf out when it’s done!

Try this bread with some Salmon with Leeks as a sandwich the next day.  All you need to do is mash up the salmon, add some mayo, pinch of salt and pepper… smear it on toasted slices of the rye bread and voilà!  You are set for lunch.

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This might be the first and last rye bread that I make at home.  Why?  Well, I was surprised when I went into anaphylactic shock after stuffing two slices down.  It wasn’t severe enough to stop me, but I’m not eating another crumb of this bread. 

The source was the Bob’s Red Mill Dark Rye Flour.  Who would have thought flour would contain traces of tree nuts?  Is there anything that is not nut-tainted anymore?  I get so frustrated reading labels and tree nuts are possibly in everything that would make my life easier.  Better to live with complication than die from convenience. 

Turns out I was coming down with a bug and/or seasonal environmental allergy attack, it was badly timed and duped me into thinking the rye flour was evil.  Next time I will find allergen-free flour.

This is for a bread machine, you could probably make this by hand as well.

  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 1/4 cup water @ 80ºC/110ºC
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 1.4 cup molasses
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 1/2 cups bread flour
  • 1 cup rye flour
  • 2 tsp active dry yeast (2 3/4 tsp for rapid cycle)

Put everything in the bread maker and set it for whole wheat rapid cycle.

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The bread machine came with instructions for cinnamon rolls and I’ve read several forums where everyone suggests finding a suitable recipe for these rolls and do not use the manufacturer’s recipe.  Being generous, I had to try it once.  Bad move.  Should have listened to the bread machine veterans.  I knew it was going horribly wrong when there was a golf ball sized dough ball being whacked around by the paddle.  Drifts of flour were hanging out along the perimeter.  There was no way all that flour could be incorporated at this point.  I began drizzling warm water from a coffee cup into the bowels of the machine, attempting to meld the flour with the ball.  Looking at the recipe again in the middle of this rescue mission, I saw no indication that I read it wrong, it’s just a poorly written recipe!  Or it wasn’t actually tested…

With a spear in my heart, I baked the cinnamon buns with all eight fingers and all eight toes crossed.  I should have taken them out sooner.  The rolls were dry and the whole stick of butter used to coat the skin of the dough was now a pool at the bottom of the pan.  My kids were the only saving grace in this whole ordeal, they polished off the dozen rolls within 24 hours. 

I haven’t let all the gusto out of my sails yet, I searched for a winning recipe to dig me out of this situation to claim redemption and save the bread machine from a dark fate.  This recipe was posted by momadvice with a few hints to improve upon the original recipe found here.  I’ve taken it a step further by introducing butter and raisins to the dough.

Cinnamon Raisin Bun Dough

  • 1 1/4 cup milk, warmed gently to 80ºF
  • 2 tbsp butter, melted with the milk
  • 1/3 cup oil
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 2 1/4 tsp dry active yeast (1 package)


  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon


  • 1/4 cup confectioner’s sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Add the ingredients in the bread machine manufacturer’s recommended order.  Select the dough cycle and start.  (You can mix this in a mixer with a dough hook attachment – keep the salt away from the yeast until after it proofs.  I recommend adding the milk, sugar and yeast first, let it proof, then add remaining ingredients.)

Let the machine do the work!


Rolled out and filling installed

Pre-heat the oven for a few minutes and turn it off.  Cover the unshaped dough with cloth and put in a warm oven for 45-60 minutes to double in bulk.  

Second rise completed waiting for the oven to pre-heat

Roll out the dough to about 12 x 15″ and spread with butter. Sprinkle cinnamon and brown sugar over the butter and roll up tightly. Cut into nine large rolls.  Return to the warm oven for 20 – 30 minutes until puffed.

Remove the pan and set the oven to 400°F, place the buns into the oven.  Immediately turn down the oven to 350°F.  Bake for 12 – 15  20-25 minutes. 

Let the buns cool while you prepare the icing.  When the buns are slightly warm drizzle the icing over each sweet decadent bun.

Warm cinnamon bun with icing

I can report that these cinnamon buns are far better than the first batch out of the bread machine.  They are very soft, so much so that I put them back in the warm oven after tasting one.  Next time I would cut the rolls slightly smaller, they rise beautifully and will make up for the lost height this way.  Can’t wait for breakfast tomorrow!

* Serving size: 1 bun      Approximate calories: 300

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YAAAAY! New toy! New toy!

It dawned on me after bringing the bread machine home that it matches my kitchen.  The stove, fridge, KitchenAid, waffle iron, blender, toaster, and crock pot are all black with stainless steel.  The only odd duck is my Santuko, sporting a lovely red handle.  Oh well, she’s a special toy.

These little buggers are at least 100 bucks at regular stores.  I started searching on craigslist yesterday and this was one of three contenders.  Then I searched on epinions.com for the three brands of bread machines, just to see what people were saying.  This one stood apart with rave reviews and this is a replacement for my old bread maker (from a different manufacturer).  This little lady was 50$.  Divide that by 3$ per loaf of bread from the store and she will be paying for herself at loaf number 17. 

But wait… it’s not just for bread!

This machine, OK it’s a heated blender (sort of), can make dough for pizza/buns/cinnamon buns (blibble)/stromboli, pasta, cookie dough (I don’t really understand why this is a feature, guess it’s an added bonus?), AND JAM.  If you recall one of my early posts was about my jam addiction.  Strawberry season is just around the corner and I can’t wait to test the machine in that respect.  Imagine fresh bread with fresh jam.  Aaaahhhhh.

Test Case: White Bread

I’m optimistic.  The machine has been filled with the manufacturer’s specified ingredients, in the exact order from the manual.  The timer is set to produce a completed loaf of white bread by 6AM tomorrow.  (It has a 15 hour timer!)

We will see if this will help my bread making score.

The Result

A loaf of white bread with great texture!

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