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Breadmaker producing loaves that I could build houses with. Help!

(23 Posts)
Lookslikerain Sat 02-Feb-13 08:09:34

I've just turned another sodding brick of a loaf out of my breadmaker, and I'm not happy (was imagining scrambled eggs and fresh bread for breakfast, as 11 month old DD kept me awake most of the night). It's not every loaf, but increasingly more and more are coming out unrisen. I thought it was dud yeast but I changed that and it's still happening. I'm putting the ingredients in in the correct order.

It's a Panasonic sd257, I think. The one with the nut dispenser. It's only 2 years old. I'd hoped it would last a bit longer.

The worst bit is my house smells of lovely bread but I refuse to eat another dense loaf.

Anyone had similar problems? Is it a goner?

oddslippers Sat 02-Feb-13 08:13:06

Don't really know why, sound Luke something is going wrong with the kneading process. Could you try setting it on a dough cycle and seeing if it is kneading it right?

oddslippers Sat 02-Feb-13 08:14:38

Another thought, are you putting the test next to the salt because that will kill it.

oddslippers Sat 02-Feb-13 08:15:07

Yeast not test!

Pendipidy Sat 02-Feb-13 08:16:04

I have the same model. And had the same problem. Do not put too much butter or marg in. I thought a bit more, tastier loaf . No , it results in bricks!

Lookslikerain Sat 02-Feb-13 09:14:21

Thanks for your replies oddslippers and Pendipidy. I don't think it's the kneading process because the brick loaf looks ok when you open it, just really dense. Like it's done everything, apart from rising. This morning the paddle was stuck in the bottom. I've been using the quantities in the recipe booklet, and in the right order so the yeast is away from the water and the salt.

Trying to think logically, does that mean its either not heating enough to allow the dough to rise, or its heating too much and killing the yeast off?

I think I'll try a dough only later and see what happens.

Lookslikerain Sat 02-Feb-13 19:23:50

Bumping this back up a bit.

I've done some looking online now and looks like other people have had similar problems with this breadmaker. Some reviews on amazon saying it only lasted 14, 18, 24 months, which for something that cost £100, isn't good enough IMO.

Don't know if anyone else has had similar problems with this model? I've wasted enough ingredients on it so I'll be buying a new one though I don't think it'll be panasonic. Think I might look for something cheaper or secondhand this time.

DoItToJulia Sat 02-Feb-13 19:29:40

I much prefer hand made bread. You can do the no knead overnight method if having it ready in the morning is important.

It's not as difficult or awkward as you think. Try it maybe?

I can give you my recipe that works every time, if you would like?

DoItToJulia Sat 02-Feb-13 19:30:23

Oh, btw, I don't do the no knead, I have just heard a lot about it.

MoreBeta Sat 02-Feb-13 19:38:41

Are you absolutley sure you have used the right type of yeast for breadmakers?

You can use ordinary dried yeast but have to activate in warm water first otherwise use yeast designed for breadmakers.

Also, the other thing is if you are putting freezing cold butter, milk or eggs in your mix straight out of the fridge it will stay too cool to rise properly. Finally are you using the right program?

These are all mistakes I have made to produce house bricks in the past.

fossil971 Sat 02-Feb-13 19:45:51

Did you buy some new bags of flour recently?

We had an attack of the bricks a month or so ago after I bought four new bags of wholemeal flour. I phoned up Panasonic because I was so worried. Allegedly the bad 2012 wheat harvest (worldwide) means there is less gluten or something and bread made with recent flour is not rising well. Flour has a long shelf life so its taking a while for older stocks to get replaced.

I tried putting about a tablespoon of lemon juice in the water which boosts the activity a bit, but have recently tracked down some dough improver and a teaspoon of that basically solves the problem. Or google for dough improvers and you may be able to buy a tub of powdered gluten.

Lookslikerain Sat 02-Feb-13 20:18:19

morebeta I'm using all the same ingredients I always have and putting them in in the correct order. I do use fridge cold butter but have in the past and its always on the timer so by the time it actually starts, it should all have come to room temperature.

fossil971 I wonder if you might have the answer. I think my house brick loaves have only been wholemeal which might mean its my flour. I didn't think flour was the culprit as its strong flour, and I'd just assumed it was all the same. I will invest in some dough improver good excuse for a browse of the Lakeland website too and see if that helps. Cheaper than a new machine!

doittojulia I'm intrigued by no knead bread (yes, I need a life... wink). How does that work? Chuck it together and bake in the morning?

DoItToJulia Sat 02-Feb-13 20:24:58

If you google New York no knead bread, you get lots of results.

I know that there are MNetters who do it, so may be worth a thread?

Ps, I love baking bread, and I mean love it, so intrigue over bread baking.. I'm with ya!

Wigeon Sat 02-Feb-13 20:28:35

Are you putting enough water in? Scrimping on the water is usually the cause of hard, dense loaves in this breakmachine-owning household. Trying ading a bit more water would be cheaper than buying a new machine at least smile.

Our standard, failproof breadmachine recipe is

150g white flour
350g brown / wholemeal
1tsp sugar
1.5 tsp dried yeast
1tsp salt
350ml water

Wigeon Sat 02-Feb-13 20:29:17

Oh, and 25g butter!

mybabywakesupsinging Sun 03-Feb-13 01:08:52

ours was definitely the flour - had worked fine on a mixture of basic white and strong wholemeal until the poor wheat harvest and low gluten flour thing.
Now using all strong flour for loaves and they are fine.
foccacia / pizza dough still fine with basic flour.
we have a panasonic too (although no nut dispenser...)

SpeckleDust Sun 03-Feb-13 01:16:45

We had am issue with our breadmaker for a while until a work colleague mentioned not cleaning the tin with detergent (affects the yeast action)

Now we just brush out the crumbs from the last batch and generally don't even rinse and get a risen loaf every time.

Have you tried a dough program then put dough on baking tray/loaf tin to see if it rises? You might be able to work out if it is the yeast not working.

gastrognome Sun 03-Feb-13 10:12:59

Have you tried adding a crushed vitamin C tablet? Made a phenomenal difference to the last wholemeal loaf I made in my breadmaker.

LIZS Sun 03-Feb-13 10:20:05

Has the yeast and /or flour been open to the air ? I find it goes off after a while.

Pendipidy Sun 03-Feb-13 22:44:49

I use the 2 hour loaf rapid setting. 1tsp yeast, 400gr strong flour, 1 tsp each of sugar and salt and 25gr i think it is of butter. Then 280ml water.
Have you tried this?

Pendipidy Sun 03-Feb-13 22:48:09

And your yeast should be little sachets than are together in pairs, not the little tubs you can get. That is no good for bread makers.

Like i said op , i have the exact same problem as you and my bricks i think were caused by old yeast and too much butter. Most of mine come out good! Plus i make tea loaf s as well.

CJ75 Tue 05-Feb-13 21:33:48

Add 2 tsp lemon juice, the uk flour has low gluten this year, report back? Works for me.

Lookslikerain Wed 06-Feb-13 21:50:23

Thanks for all your advice. So an update on my bread situation. I had to work through a supermarket loaf first that I bought in distress at the weekend!

Made a white loaf today and it worked perfectly! smile I think it's my flour. I'm using the right yeast (someone mentioned this up thread) and neither yeast nor flour has been open too long. I think my wholemeal flour is the culprit. I'm going to try another wholemeal with lemon juice, as mentioned and see what happens.

I will report back on the wholemeal in a day or two.

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