Introducing the 50 loaf bread machine project!

Introducing the 50 loaf bread machine project!

Heretofore to be known as “the 50 loaf project” or the 50LP for short.

What is the 50 loaf project?

I’ve decided to bake 50 different loaves of bread using my bread machine (which is at this time a trusty and reliable Zojirushi).  I’m not going to set an exact time frame for this project because I know that life tends to get in the way of my best intentions sometimes.  However the goal is to make roughly one new recipe per week so that the entire project should take me about a year.

Why am I doing this?

Reason #1

First and foremost, reason #1 is that I love having fresh baked bread at home.  However, I tend to make a small handful of the same recipes over and over most of the time.  This is great because they are breads I love and the results are always good.  But I tend to fall into a rut and not try new things.  I hope this project will help me discover wonderful new recipes that will become favorites.

Reason #2

Also, like most of you reading this article, I tend to get really busy.  I work full time and I have a young son.  Even though making most bread machine loaves takes a total of, oh 5 or maybe 10 minutes max, sometimes I just don’t do it.  So this project is to keep me motivated to make bread frequently, and get me into the habit.  Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had my bread machine for 4 years now and made countless loaves of bread, and there have been times where I’ve gone months making 1-2 loaves a week on average.  It’s all about getting into the habit.

Reason #3

My little boy loves bread!  He seems to love the homemade bread even more than the store bought breads (who wouldn’t, right?).  So with this project I know I’ll be making him nice wholesome, and usually healthy (although I’m not going to promise that every loaf will be particularly healthy!) fresh bread, and that I know exactly what ingredients are in it, without chemicals or preservatives.  The bottom line is that my whole family will benefit from this project (including me!).

Reason #4

Let’s not forget you!  I hope that my experimenting with new recipes will also help you find and try new wonderful recipes, and also learn from the ones that don’t work out so well for me.  I hope it will help you to get the most out of your bread machine, and maybe use it just a little more often like I will.

What are the rules?

Well the wonderful thing here is that there aren’t going to be any rules.  We have enough rules in our lives.  Basically I’ll choose a different recipe each time, that’s really the only thing I’ll promise you.  I’ll pick recipes from a variety of sources, which include:

  • my bread machine’s cookbook
  • the internet
  • one of the many bread related cookbooks sitting on my shelf
  • your recommendations if you care to send me any recipes

I tend to play around a bit when I’m making bread, and often will use whole wheat flour or other types of flours or grains in place of some or all of the flour called for in the recipe.  I experiment with adding ingredients such as vital wheat gluten and other grain improvers in my quest to make better bread.  I may try different types and brands of yeast and other ingredients (but I’m not promising anything!) along the way.  I might even make the occasional loaf using my Kitchenaid stand mixer or my Cuisinart 14 cup food processor, both of which are great for mixing and kneading dough, and thus saving time.  But mostly I’ll be using my fully automatic bread machine.

OK here are a couple of “rules”.  I will be sure to document the source of the recipe as well as any changes or modifications that I make to it.  Also, I promise to share the real results of every recipe with you including photos and my comments, including the failures.  In some cases if a loaf flops, I may try to figure out how to fix it.  In other cases, I might just toss the recipe.  We’ll see.

Hopefully this will be a fun project that you will follow along and enjoy, and share with any of your friends who also enjoy making bread!

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