Thursday, October 25, 2007

Advice Forum Friday - Bread Machine Dough

Hey, guys. I absolutely can not believe it's been a week since I've posted. I've thought of forty-two different things to write about, but just never sat down and did it. Gotta sit down for Advice Forum, though! If you have a question for my vast readership (all 12 of you!) then post it on your blog, link back to me here, and sign the Mr. Linky down below.

Here's what I need help with this week. I have a good recipe for roll dough specifically for the bread machine. I've made this recipe probably 10 times, with varying results. Today, however, was the absolute worst batch I've ever made. Here's the basic recipe (from memory; the quantities may be off).

1 c warm milk
1/2 c softened butter or margarine
1/4 c sugar
2 eggs
1 t salt
4 c bread flour (I always use regular flour and 1 t baking powder)
2 1/4 t yeast

Guys, I have made this recipe exactly the same every single time (The only variables are the milk temperature and the softness of the margarine). Today the dough was a wet, sticky mess. It POURED out of the pan. I added a ton of flour and kneaded it until it was the right consistency, then went ahead with my rolls. They turned out all right after my adjustments, but I just don't understand why the consistency was so different to begin with.

Any ideas?


Too Blessed to be Stressed said...

When I made my first bread in the machine my friend told me it was important the tempature of the liquid. It made a differnece in her bread.

Jennifer - who really wants to participate but is STILL thinking of a question =)

Milehimama said...

The temp of the liquid is very important. If it's not warm enough, the yeast won't activate properly, which means the bread won't start to rise at the right time, which means that the gluten development which is what makes the bread stretchy will be messed up.
Softening the butter/margarine is important as well - it needs to be room temp., or it will bring the temp of the liquids down and not mix into the dough evenly.
If your liquid is too hot (over 110 degrees) it will kill the yeast.
If you use tub margarine spread, not sticks, they have too much water and your dough will be soggy.
The temp of the liquid should feel warm on the inside of your wrist - like baby bottle warm.
I posted my bread machine kolache/dough recipe here:

I have never heard of making bread flour using baking powder - but I have heard of making it by adding gluten.

Jennifer said...

Well, I'm definitely not much help as I just finally acquired a bread machine last weekend. (I'm so jazzed!!!) And so far I've only made a loaf of banana bread (and learned I need to change the setting as it got a little darker than I like.) Anyway - what the others said makes sense. Mine does say to make sure all ingredients are room temperature. It also says the temperature/humidity can affect the bread - could that be a possibility?

And dang it, I had a question in my head (and even wrote it down) but got so busy on Friday I didn't even sit down to blog. So, I'm going to go ahead and write my post and have it ready to go next Friday. That way all I have to do is run over here and hit post! I'm really annoyed at myself lately. I've had many posts in my head all week and haven't posted them! Ugh!

james said...

The fondest memory of my youth on a farm was coming home from a country school starving for something to eat and smelling the wonderful aroma of freshly baked bread. My mother would cut off a thick heel, and I would slather it with homemade butter and jam. Talk about your comfort food!


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