When you are buying a new bread machine for your kitchen, your instinct will be to return to a brand that you are familiar with. Brands founded decades ago last the test of time by building customer loyalty through innovation and quality, while staying competitive. But does your favourite brand make a good bread making machine?
Making bread at home has made a resurgence in recent years. More people are having issues with gluten and have resorted to making their own bread and cakes – they want to know exactly what is going into their food.
A bread-maker kneads the dough before the heating element begins to cook the dough into bread. This heating element is a high-powered device and you need to know the manufacturer has made it safe. We look at a couple of big brands and compare them to a smaller bread machine brands.
Panasonic Bread Machines
Panasonic is now over a century old and has shown the world the right way to manage a company and build products. The Japanese company started by making lighting sockets before moving on to complex electronics. Panasonic is now one of the largest manufacturers of electronics in the world. Greenpeace recognises the company as one of the top 11-green electronics producers in the world.
Panasonic’s kitchen appliances have always shown the way to other brands. When bread-makers first came out, they still spent time designing their machines. If you wanted to have a loaf waiting for you in the morning with other makers, you would need to leave the entire mix in the machine overnight. Before the morning, the yeast would activate, and the dough had made a mess of the machine.
Let’s look at one of Panasonic’s top selling bread machines:
Panasonic Stainless Steel
Panasonic makes top quality kitchen electronics, they always have. This is a basic rounded stainless-steel fascia and black plastic control panel. simple to use, simple to clean, and that is important because bread makers do get dirty. Panasonic was making bread-makers at the beginning of the trend and have learned from their customers’ input.
One of the 27-programs available on the machine is a nut and raisin dough. An automated tray tips the extra ingredients into the dough at the correct point in the program. Adding the ingredient in this way evens the distribution, as opposed to adding them at the beginning. This machine has a yeast dispenser, which surprisingly is unusual for a bread maker. An automated yeast adder is essential to preparing the machine for a morning loaf. Timing the yeast will also give greater control over the fluffiness of the loaf.
Morphy Richards has not reached a century yet, but it is close. The British company started by making electric fires in 1936. Like many manufacturers of the day, Morphy Richards diversified to other home appliances. An Irish firm now owns the company by the name of Glen Dimplex. India’s Bajaj Electronics makes some of the components for the machines. Morphy Richards still keeps a good ranking in making home appliances that are both dependable and aesthetically pleasing.
Morphy Richards FastBake
The FastBake is true to the given name. A 2-pound loaf will go from raw ingredients to cooked and ready to eat in under an hour. There are fewer programming options than the Panasonic at only 12-options, including a 13-hour delay timer. Their machine offers the users a choice of final crusts, ranging from light to dark, and it can also make cake mixture or jam. The Morphy Richards is less than half the price of the Panasonic. The lesser price goes in hand with limits to functionality. If it a simple bread-maker that you want, then this is going to tick the box.
It is the youngest of the manufacturers, but it has still been running for over half-a-century. They started making hygienic packaging for the food-processing industry in 1964. Then Lakeland moved on to making homeware such as oven pans and glasses. Lakeland now has it’s own store where they sell everything from cookware to kitchen appliances.
All based out their beautiful Lake District head office in the UK. The company has a good reputation for making products that are useful and practical. Lakeland products are not just a gimmick that will never escape from the storage drawer. They fill the void between the products used by professional chefs and those used by the homemaker.
Lakeland Bread-Maker Plus
Lakeland has integrated a kitchen scale into their machine. The scales are easy to lift out and use separately. Like the Panasonic bread-maker, they have made a tray that will tip ingredients into the dough at the precise time. This important for nuts and seeds to stop them from absorbing too much moisture before the yeast has had time to grow.
The machine can make jam and cakes. It also has 12-programs for other bread types and includes a setting to adjust crust darkness. Loaves of up to 2.5-pounds fit in the single tub. The other bread-makers have baking-tins half the size of the Lakeland. this makes it more suitable to feed a family.
Conclusion: Best Bread Machine Brand
Bread-makers are a great investment and they give you the satisfaction of making something that the whole family can enjoy. A good and bad factor is the lack of preservatives, any bread made has a shelf life of a couple of days before it will need throwing away. For most people, the small 2-pound tin is more than enough bread. The Panasonic is the best bread machine brand for those that could eat a half-loaf in 2-days.
For the biggest loaf, Lakeland makes the best machine. The process is the same for all the home bread makers, but the built-in scale is a brilliant idea. It looks more impressive and professional, when in fact they are all remarkably similar machines. The trade-off is that this machine takes double the countertop space of other makers, but that is a small sacrifice for it making such great bread.
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