Still The Best Homemade Bread Maker by Cuisinart
Cuisinart CBK-200 2-Pound Convection Automatic Breadmaker
I never thought that bread making was going to be a weekly project in our household, however there came a point a couple of years back when my wife and I realized that the price of a quality loaf of bread had risen in price (no pun intended) to a level that just didn't make sense anymore.
Long story short, our brand of wheat bread was now well over four dollars a loaf and these were not particularly large loafs of bread and although we liked the product... we could not justify four dollars a loaf!
It didn't take too much longer until we decided to buy a bread maker. If nothing else, we figured that we'd have some fun with it. We'd talked before about making our own breads, this new insight pushed us to action.
The challenge; picking out a bread making machine that was dependable and easy to use. Neither of us wanted to turn this into a tedious task and since we already owned several Cuisinart kitchen appliances we opted for the simplest solution and In the name of Kitchen fashion chose a Cuisinart Breadmaker that would match our existing Cuisinart Appliances.... here are the results.
12/28/2009 -begin using.
02/24/2013 -lost paddle, ordered new one; $9.95 on e-bay.
05/13/2013 -we are still enjoying the use of our bread maker.
01/19/2014 -Still working strong, but am going to need to find replacement clips which hold the bread pan in place. They seem to be bent or have lost their spring. Remove two screws to repair, but good luck finding the clips.
08/12/2014 -I Still have not found new clips - bent back the fringe on the bread pan insert a few months back, and has been working OK since then.
Cuisinart CBK-200 at Amazon As low as $78.00 .
Purchase date: Sometime before Christmas "2009"
Purchase Price: Under $100.00
Purchased Where: Amazon.com
Reason For Purchase: Tired of paying too much for store bought bread.
Reason For Purchasing Cuisinart: Matched existing Cuisinart Coffee Maker, Cuisinart Coffee Grinder and Cuisinart Toaster.
Loaves baked since purchase: Approximately 100 (average one per week)
Problems: Our initial loaves were not rising properly and came out short and dense. A little experimentation showed that adding an extra couple of tablespoons of water to the recipes provided solved the issue.The machine worked beyond expectation.
"Don't throw the paddle out with the bread" If you've don what we've done and apparently lost the paddle that kneads the bread dough in our breadmaker, don't despair you can purchase replacement paddles and have them shipped to you.
Cuisinart Breadmaker - A Great Purchase
So we've baked over a hundred loaves of bread and you've probably caught on by now. We have been very happy with this little investment. Not only have we broken away from paying what is now sometime five dollars a loaf for designer whole grain breads. We have also learned to experiment a little and come up with our own tasty favorites.
As health minded individuals we are also very conscious of what we eat. Now that we are actually making the dough and baking the bread we know exactly what is going into it. One of the fascinating things we discovered about the homemade bread, made in our Cuisinart bread making machine, is that the bread we make lasts for many days without adding any chemical preservative. We place the loaf in a large plastic food bag and leave it on top of the bread maker. We've discussed investing in a Bread Box , but haven't quite figured where to put it.
Bread Maker Recipes and Pizza Dough Fun
Bread Maker Bread
We found that we have a handful of favorites. The recipes come with the machine and with a little experimenting you can come up with your own variations:
Basic Honey Wheat Bread - This is an all purpose favorite, whether we are making Bacon and Eggs, French Toast, Bacon, Lettuce and Tomato sandwiches (BLT's), or simply having Bread and Butter, or a Peanut Butter and Honey with Banana on toast snack. (Mmm by the way)
Pumpernickel Bread - The Pumpernickel Bread is a bit more involved than the standards, but is well worth the effort if you are looking for a hearty bread to have with a soup or stew. We especially like it with home made Split Pea and Ham Soup.
Rosemary Bread - What a light delight, absolutely perfect with Poached Eggs or Eggs Benedict on top. Also makes for an interesting vegetarian style sandwich.
Pizza Dough - Home made Pizza's are a blast to eat and lot's of fun to make, especially when preparing the dough can be done automatically in your Bread Making Machine. We use a round which can be placed in the oven or on a grill ( this is a lot of fun when friends are over). After rolling out the dough and placing sauce, cheese, and our favorite toppings on top. We then simply place pizza on the stone and wait for our tasty treat to cook. Pizza Stone
Why Use a Breadmachine?
Question: considering you will have to shell out $75 - $200 for a quality bread making machine, at what point should you invest in a bread machine? After all you can perform the entire process by hand with a mixing bowl and and a floured counter top.
Answer: You can certainly perform the entire process by hand, without the cost of a machine and if your aim is to be a purist, I'd say don't purchase a machine. On the other hand, if what you are trying to accomplish is to have quality, fresh, home made bread with the least amount of work and mess possible, a bread making machine will do that for you .
If you look at it from a purely nutritional point of view, considering ingredients and additives (or lack of), you'll find that the finished product is no different in quality or healthfulness than if you performed the entire process without mechanical aid.
In the final analysis the benefits of using a bread making machine are saving time, less mess, and the ease of push button baking.