Baking with a Bread Machine: Whole-Wheat and Peanut Butter Bread
I've been working on some recipes for my Panasonic bread machine. The biggest difference is that when using a stand mixer or kneading the dough by hand, I can adjust ingredient amounts as I go. If the dough is too wet or dry, I can fix that. But with a bread machine, you're supposed to measure everything, put it in the machine, slam the lid shut, and let it go.
Sure, you can open the lid and make minor adjustments if you absolutely have to, but the one time I tried to add more flour to a dough that was obviously too wet, the machine unceremoniously threw the flour in my face. Oops.
You can slow down or stop a stand mixer to do a little hand mixing, but a bread machine has to run though its program. You can't pause it. If you do stop it, it'll start from the beginning, which is probably not what you want. So I tried to add flour to my wet dough and when the mixing paddle swung around, there was flour flying.
Really, it's smarter to design recipes outside the bread machine and adapt them to work in the machine later.
This recipe uses one of my favorite ingredients, peanut butter. But unlike my peanut butter bread recipe that uses a LOT of peanut butter, this one calls for just a little. The bread smells nutty, but the flavor is much more subtle. The nuttiness complements the whole-wheat flour flavor. And even though there's a significant amount of flour, the bread is soft.
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About the author: Donna Currie has been cooking for fun and writing for pay since the days when typewritten articles traveled by snail mail. When she combined those talents in a food column for a newspaper in her area, she realized that writing about food is almost as much fun as eating. You can find her on her blog, Cookistry or follow her on Twitter at @dbcurrie or @cookistry.