canuckmum wrote:I bought a Zojirushi bread maker early this year and now rarely buy bread from outside. Everyone in the family loves the bread from the machine, especially hubby who do not like the sweet taste of most local bread (e.g. Gardenia, Sunshine...). It really is as easy as putting ingredients into the pan as listed in the recipe book, press the right buttons and then walk away (like a rice cooker!). Waking up to the smell of fresh bread is one of the best things in the world The result from following the recipe book had always been pretty much perfect. I tried experimenting with other recipes from online site or other bread making books and had to adjust the proportion somewhat, which was less consistent, but the bread still turned out nice if not perfect.
I wish we bought a bread maker a long time ago, just that I was hesitant due to the price (most brands are $300+ even on promotion) and worried that it would become a white elephant at home. But it has really become one of the most used appliances in my kitchen like my rice cooker. If your household already eat a fair amount of bread (e.g. for breakfast everyday), then it is a worthwhile investment. People have claimed that premium flour like King Arthur unbleached organic bread flour turns out superior bread but I have not tried that myself. Just the regular Prima brand bread flour from regular supermarkets ($2.40-$2.80 per 1 kg bag) already gives good results for us (and makes about 4 loaves). I sometimes mix in some wholemeal flour for added fibre and texture.
I went for the Zojirushi brand because of good reviews (I also use their rice cooker which has been great) and the very compact size (smallest on the market that I've seen). Trust the Japs to make small appliances so well, because they live in such small apartments The small loaf size is fine for us since we are a small household and the bread should be eaten in 2-3 days max with no preservatives. I don't have a lot of counter space so size was a concern. I didn't want to buy something too big that had to be put away out of sight, because the more troublesome it is to get it out and put it away after use, the less I will use it! Maybe something useful to consider for other people thinking of buying a bread machine. On the counter or suitable surface is best, but if you can put it away in an easily accessible cupboard/shelf that would be helpful too.
Hi, can you show a pic of the bread crust made with the bread maker? I am concerned about the thickness of the crust.