The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

Using a Kenwood mixer.

Richard43's picture

Using a Kenwood mixer.


I have yet to introduce myself on the introduction page because I’m struggling to negotiate the site. Sorry.

I'm starting to struggle with hand mixing, tired and creaky old fingers are to blame.

mostly my dough gets 6 hours of salt free starter free autolyse and doesn’t need much stretching and I’m not complaining about my breads. Problem is I use old dough method. Not actually “Old-dough” but a starter that is hydrated the same as my bulk dough. Mixing this in by hand is even more difficult for me that mixing in a starter at 100% hydration.

I suppose I could go back to a wetter starter though I do enjoy using a dough starter.

is using mechanical mixing a problem ? Rather, can it be a problem ?

Rock's picture

In my experience, the biggest problem with home mechanical mixers is over mixing, It sounds like you are experienced enough to know not to do that.

I normally use an older Bosch Universal for three minutes, just enough to fully incorporate the ingredients. Then I use a series of stretch and folds to develop the gluten.

I also have an older 7.5 qt. Kenwood/Delonghi mixer. The Kenwood was sold to Delonghi and then bought back as I recall. You can see the "K" in the paddle attachment on mine, even though it is branded Delonghi. Mixing to incorporate takes a bit longer (5 to 6 minutes) but it's still a good powerful machine that should mix in your old dough without a problem. 

In a higher price range, the Ankarsrum Mixer is very popular on this forum, so I'm sure some owners can help you with information.



Richard43's picture

I’m 20 years making bread, at least 15 years making sourdough. Yes, it was the issue of over-mixing I’m concerned with.

I have yet to experience any adverse effect from my mixing a dough into a dough I’m looking to make things easier for my fingers and hands. Was a time I stopped making bread because of poorly hands.

the long salt free autolyse works very nicely at strengthening the gluten to the point I often wonder if it actually needs more work and I accept that a higher hydration starter would mix in easier, I’m trying to get into a new routine in the event my hands/fingers fail again.

Other than the early days of my bread making I have avoided the use of the Kenwood mostly because I felt that symmetrical mixing is not the answer for bread dough. I sort of proved this to myself by using a Panasonic bread machine to mix my dough.

The bread machine has an asymmetric paddle in an asymmetric chamber, the dough get thrown around rather than twirling itself onto the dough hook working in a symmetrical container.

Problem is the bread mixer struggles with more than 600 grams of flour.

thanks for your help, I’m sure the issue is discussed elsewhere in this group, I didn’t find it yet.

Always makes me smile when I remember being on a course some years ago with Andrew Whitley, Andrew insists on his students getting messy with the dough so they feel the gluten strengthening. Using a mixer would amount to a stern-stare.

Andrew was right of-course, the feel of the dough getting tighter was a thrill to my early dough handling efforts.