Sunday, April 19, 2009

Homemade White Bread

DSC03606-1

Yes, we got ourselves a bread machine.

More specifically, a CBK-200 bread machine from Cuisinart. It wasn't easy to find either. Some were for display and not to be sold, while others were damaged. Luckily though, we found one after driving, calling, and talking to the cash register people!

We did several loaves of bread already with this machine, and not all of them were successful. Some had a very weird flavor. All of them had a way too hard crust.

And so obviously, we implemented some different ways to change it. And now...it's a very fun machine to use, and plus, the bread is scrumptious.

Watching the machine do its thing is very interesting. At the start, it just looks like pile of flour floating on liquid. But then, as the paddle mixes, the mixture of ingredients changes into a dough. The dough then bounces around, almost looking like it is fighting against the paddle because it stays on one corner of the pan until the paddle stops and then continues twirl around.

After a while, the dough rises, and then gets kneaded for about thirty seconds. And then, it rises again. You can then take out the paddle if you like, and then it bakes.

DSC03613-1

And after baking you can take the bread pan out, which for me used to be a very hard task. I would use to almost burn my fingers due to the hot pan and clamps. The thing you do to make it effortless is to hold a wet towel, and push the bread pan to the back of the machine, doing one side at a time. It works much easily, and there is less fighting with the clamps. I hope that Cuisinart solves this design flaw soon, as it could hurt people!

DSC03618-1

The finished product (this one came as a medium crust) is pretty good. When you eat it fresh and warm, you can smell all the bread aroma. The interior is ultra soft, and the outside crust is hard and crispy for the most part. We find it good to eat with your usual bread accompaniments- whether it be unsalted butter or cheese, it is good when warm!

Like to make this bread at home? Well, the recipe is here below:

Homemade White Bread (for use with a bread machine)
Adapted from Cuisinart's Recipe Booklet

Recipe (for a one pound loaf)
3/4ths cup of water
2 "splashes" of milk (appoximately 1/8 of a cup)
2 tablespoons butter (unsalted or salted doesn't matter)
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon salt
2 cups bread flour (we use Fresh and Easy's unbleached bread flour for this)
1 teaspoon yeast (rapid rise or regular works fine)

Instructions:
1. Take out your bread pan for the bread machine.
2. Place the ingredients into the bread pan, in the order listed above.
3. Put the bread pan into the bread machine.
4. Turn on the bread machine and set it to settings of light crust and a one pound loaf on the "white bread setting". Or...pick whatever you like. The loaf of bread above was made in the medium setting, but the light tastes better. Pick medium and the bread comes out tasting like California Pizza Kitchen's bread!
5. Let the machine do its work! And take out the bread paddle (if you want to)
6. Eat when done. Slice the entire bread when it is cold though. Just take samples of the bread when warm.
7. Keep the bread moist with a damp wet towel to cover. The bread will keep for at least a week.
Optional: Pour a bit of oil on the top of the bread during the start of baking, and let the oil go to the sides of the pan too. You will create a crispy and thin crust after baking- and if you keep the bread moist with a towel it will then become a thin, soft crust.

DSC03623-1
A steam of bread aroma floats into the room. Mmm. Soft, chewy, pillow-y interior and crisp exterior when fresh. Mmm...

Hope you enjoy it!

4 comments:

Selba said...

Wow! You have a bread machine! That's so cool! My mom always wants to buy one for her but... I just find it not really worth for the price and how much bread we consume.

The bread looks so yummy, good job! :)

EatTravelEat said...

Selba,

Thanks! We decided to get one because we eat bread for breakfast a lot :) and so this would help so that we don't need to run to the bakery that often.

Also it was a good deal comparing to its retail cost- we got it for about 50 percent off.

joanh said...

mmm! that's so cool! i'm too lazy to make my own bread.

EatTravelEat said...

joanh,

Thanks! Not much work to do after having the machine, but taking the paddle out and cleaning everything up can sometimes get annoying...