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Thread: Bread Machine Help...please!

  1. #1
    Super Member ScubaK's Avatar
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    Bread Machine Help...please!

    I got a Breadman bread machine and all my attempts to make a decent loaf of white or wheat bread turn out as horrible messes.
    Can someone help me out? The recipes in their booklet have two different types/measures of yeast. I have searched the web site for help.
    Why can't I use regular AP flour like I do for my handmade loaves?
    I have tried Regular yeast and Bread machine yeast. What is the difference because I see no difference on the label.
    I am just about ready to throw this thing out!
    Thanks,
    Kirsten
    "You have nothing to lose but wrinkles!"

    http://www.nerium.com/join/mrskirsten

  2. #2
    Super Member Tink's Mom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScubaK View Post
    I got a Breadman bread machine and all my attempts to make a decent loaf of white or wheat bread turn out as horrible messes.
    Can someone help me out? The recipes in their booklet have two different types/measures of yeast. I have searched the web site for help.
    Why can't I use regular AP flour like I do for my handmade loaves?
    I have tried Regular yeast and Bread machine yeast. What is the difference because I see no difference on the label.
    I am just about ready to throw this thing out!
    Thanks,
    Kirsten
    The bread flour is different from regular flour...
    I think it is a higher gluten.
    I have an old bread machine (10yrs old), and don't have much of a problem making the bread. I do prefer the bread machine yeast. You store it in the fridge and use it just like the regular stuff. The best breads that we like are the french bread and the quick oldfashioned bread.
    Tink's Mom (My name is really Susie)

  3. #3
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    not quite sure what you mean by "mess", but if you don't want to buy seprate bread flour, you can buy gluten or bread enhancer in the grocery baking section to add to your AP flour to give it more umph. Also, peek in while it is kneading and see how the dough looks. you can quickly add a bit more flour or liquid as needed. many instructions don't tell you that you can do that. alse make sure you put the ingred. in the pan according to your specific machine, not all follow the same order.

  4. #4
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    Is this a new machine? I have to wonder if there is something wrong with it. It shouldn't make *that* much difference whether you use regular flour or bread flour, regular dry yeast or machine dry yeast. The most important thing I have found is the order in which ingredients are added. For my machine, liquids go in first, flour on top, and then I made two little "wells" in the flour for the dry yeast. If you are following directions for order of ingredients and your bread is not rising, seems to me as if the machine is not heating properly. Too little heat and the yeast will not rise fast enough before baking starts, resulting in a small dense loaf. Too much heat kills the yeast and the bread doesn't rise because the yeast is dead. Additional gluten helps, but shouldn't be necessary to get a decent loaf.

    Maybe you could be a little more specific about "horrible mess"? Is the loaf too small, too large, unbaked in the center, overbaked?

    p.s. I think it's best to perfect a loaf of white bread before attempting whole wheat bread. Whole grains do typically require extra gluten.

  5. #5
    Super Member donnalynett's Avatar
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    I've had my bread machine for years and always used the bread machine flour and yeast. I quit using it as it started only making about one-half a loaf even with the full loaf ingredients.

  6. #6
    Senior Member sandilee's Avatar
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    Do what I do, go buy the box mixes off the shelf at store!

  7. #7
    Super Member Peckish's Avatar
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    Have you checked the troubleshooting section of your manual? Usually it will describe the "mess" and pinpoint the cause.

    Are you using recipes specifically for bread machines, or are you trying to adapt your usual hand-made bread recipe to your machine?

  8. #8
    Super Member ScubaK's Avatar
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    I thank you all for the replies. I will try and take some pics of the latest White Bread Loaf...the previous one went to the crows
    I hadn't thought to use gluten in the machine but I always throw in a tblspn in the hand made loaves. I'm at a loss with the fancy machine, my Dads always was a good loaf.
    K
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  9. #9
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    Check all the ingredients if they are fresh or if they have expired. I had trouble with the temp. of the water and the yeast.
    SueDor

  10. #10
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    I know on my bread machine you have to layer the ingredients in a certain order. Water, salt, butter (if using), flour, sugar, then yeast. I know it said specifically to avoid the yeast touching the liquid and salt. That's all I could think of besides the great ideas already posted. Hope you get a good result soon.

    Pat

  11. #11
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    Does all purpose f flour have bicarb or baking powder in it. We have flour here we call self raising and that has some bicrb of baking owder added in. We also have plain flour which diesn't have those. the bread flour has a different structure which has longer chains of protein and is therefore more elastic allowing the bread to rise and hold the air bubbles.

    Check the freashness of the ingredients. if using yeast from the firdge check you don't have to let it come to room temp before adding tot he machine.

    I agree check the manual. the "mess" will be the clue. For example if you make a hoceky puck you usually have a lack of yeast problem.

    yeast is a living organisum and the water has to the the right temp when it goes in. too cold and it won't be able to activate the yeast enough, too warm and it will not work either. Too much sugar poisns the yeast and too little isn't enough to activate it all. Baking is science not art so follow the recipe exactly and make a note of what you do. the other thing that can affect it is the temp and humidity of the room in whcih the machin is operating.

    Lots of variables but keep trying. Home baked bread is just divine. I just wish it didn't have such an effect on my waistline!

    becks

  12. #12
    Senior Member IAmCatOwned's Avatar
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    I think there may be something wrong with your machine. You should be able to make a pretty good loaf using regular flour and yeast (although your bread machine may state rapid rise yeast for the cycle you are using). We have a cheapo bread machine ($35) and it makes a wonderful loaf every time. Breadman machines are top of the line.

  13. #13
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    Your liquid may be too hot. Anything heat over 115 degrees will kill the yeast. Also salt shouldn't be added to the yeast. I add the yeast last or dissolve it in the water before putting it in the machine. I use the lb packages of yeast bought at Sam's Club. I keep it in the freezer and it stays good for years. I use it right out of the freezer, 1 tablespoon at a time. Is the mixing paddle attached firmly? Mine was loose and didn't mix or knead the dough properly. I make double batches of dough and let the machine mix and knead it. I take it out after the first rise and shape in two loaves or rolls and let it rise in the pans.
    Got fabric?

  14. #14
    Junior Member Retiredandquilting's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScubaK View Post
    I got a Breadman bread machine and all my attempts to make a decent loaf of white or wheat bread turn out as horrible messes.
    Can someone help me out? The recipes in their booklet have two different types/measures of yeast. I have searched the web site for help.
    Why can't I use regular AP flour like I do for my handmade loaves?
    I have tried Regular yeast and Bread machine yeast. What is the difference because I see no difference on the label.
    I am just about ready to throw this thing out!
    Thanks,
    Kirsten
    I have been successfully using my for several years. You need to be prepared to add more water or add more flour, depending on the humidity, even with the mixes. I follow the recipe directions, but check it after a few minutes and see if it is too dry or too wet. You add a little bit more flour if it is too wet, and a little more water if it is too dry. And I mean a little. Little by little it will come to the right consistency. I ususally buy my yeast by the pound, but when I use the packets, I use 1 packet only. I also add gluten if I am making wheat or rye bread. Good luck - if you need more info, please email me privately and I can give you the title of a really good bread book that can be alot of help! There is a lot more to it than just dumping in a mix to your machine.
    Sue In Bloomfield, NY

  15. #15
    Super Member toadmomma's Avatar
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    I have the breadman machine in fact for quite a few years, I did not like their recipies so I found some on lineor thought friends and found the one I like, I just use regular flour and regular yeast, just layer it liquids on bottom flour next and the tsps of stuff have to go on the corners, check your selection of the type of bread, crust type to see if you are doing the right size loaf so that it gets the right rise time. hope it works
    Deb T

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    I have a Breadman bread machine and have had for years. Have found over time that I have to take out two tablespoons from the amount of called for liquid and I always add at least a teaspoon more of the Bread Machine yeast and sometimes a little bit of regular yeast depending on which recipe I use. I found it takes lots of loaves to learn the "ins and outs" of your machine. I think each machine is a little different. I have now reached the point where I let it do the dough cycle, and when finished take it out and make a loaf out of it, let it rise and bake it in the oven as the crust is not as thick and hard from the oven as it is in the bread machine.

    I have tried box mixes as well as recipes and have had good and back luck with both. I did buy a temperature stick or thermometer and make sure my liquids are in the right temp range as too hot can kill the yeast.

    I am sure it is something simple and you will get a good loaf soon. Is your Dad close by, have him come and make a loaf in it or watch what you are doing, he may be able to spot something or give you some help.

    Good luck!

  17. #17
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    Maybe you got som old or bad yeast. I've never heard of "bread machine yeast" I buy my yeast at a place called Gordon Foods, not sure if thats a nationwide chain but we have a lot of them. Its like a buy in bulk place the yeast is cheap.
    As the other gal said, buy a small bag of gluten and add a tablespoon per loaf using regular AP flour.
    Is your water too hot? Add an extra tablespoon of sugar if you are having troublle with rising.
    good luck!

  18. #18
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    Hope you get it figured out. I love my machine and have some wonderful recipies.
    I am Mimi for 2.

  19. #19
    Super Member LindaR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fluffygirl View Post
    I know on my bread machine you have to layer the ingredients in a certain order. Water, salt, butter (if using), flour, sugar, then yeast. I know it said specifically to avoid the yeast touching the liquid and salt. That's all I could think of besides the great ideas already posted. Hope you get a good result soon.

    Pat
    I know mine says not to let the salt near the yeast...my main problem was the temp of liquid...I started using a thermo to check it..I always thought it should be warmer than it needed to be...
    Retired and living in NE Michigan

  20. #20
    Super Member amandasgramma's Avatar
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    I haven't read all the hints, so if I'm repeating here, then I apologize.
    I live at a high altitude --- I can NOT use the machine to bake my bread. I have to reduce the amount of yeast (2 tsp instead of 2 1/4 -- the amount in a package). I also can NOT bake it as long as normal....so, I use the dough setting and take it out, shape into a loaf and bake in my regular oven.

    I've had three machines ---- 1 when I lived at a low altitude -- NEVER had one that baked right!!!

    I use regular flour -- I'm sure they would be better using the special flour and special yeast, however, they're REALLY fine with regular stuff. If they got any better, I'm sure I'd weigh 600 lbs.!!!!!!

    I use a thermometer for the water/milk temp, too. That is VERY important! If the house is cold and the container thing is cold, I'll put it in the sink and dump hot water in -- enough to take the chill off.

    I just put everything in -- using flour first.....I don't worry about salt touching yeast or anything else.....I just dump and turn it on....

    good luck!
    Dee


    "A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable, but more useful than a life spent doing nothing." by George Bernard Shaw

  21. #21
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    As many have pointed out- keep the salt away from the yeast. it will kill it.
    Breadmaking is not that hard, with or without a machine. but, as with many things, you need to get a feel for it and that only comes with practice.
    I am a baker by trade, and even in a bakery there is the occasional "oops" when a batch just doesn't come together right.

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    I would say to make sure your bread flour is room temperature and the yeast as well. Also check the expiration date on your yeast. Do not have your liquids too hot. Put in the machine in the order suggested in your manual. Other liquids should not be too hot either. Check your loaf after the machine has begun. It it looks dry, add water a Tablespoon at a time. It if is too wet and gluey, add 1 Tablespoon of flour at a time. Good luck.

  23. #23
    Super Member huntannette's Avatar
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    yess make sure your yeast is not outdated...
    Quote Originally Posted by Steady Stiching View Post
    Maybe you got som old or bad yeast. I've never heard of "bread machine yeast" I buy my yeast at a place called Gordon Foods, not sure if thats a nationwide chain but we have a lot of them. Its like a buy in bulk place the yeast is cheap.
    As the other gal said, buy a small bag of gluten and add a tablespoon per loaf using regular AP flour.
    Is your water too hot? Add an extra tablespoon of sugar if you are having troublle with rising.
    good luck!

  24. #24
    Junior Member overdew's Avatar
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    No one can do anything with yeast that is old. It ruins the whole thing. Try new yeast.

  25. #25
    Super Member littleone's Avatar
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    Another thing to keep in mind is correctly measuring ingredients. Ensure your cups and spoons are true; (think 1/4 inch seams) all cups are different. (tupperware has very good measuring cups/spoons). DO NOT scoop the flour out of bin with the measuring cup, the flour gets compacted resulting in too much flour. Always scoop the flour into the measuring cup and level off with knife.
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