Breadman Bread Machine is Finally Dying

Well I wrote about this previously, how my Breadman bread machine just stops working when I’m loaded up and ready to make dough.

I’ve now learned to check if it’s working first before I add my ingredients to the bucket. Mike has tried fixing it several times. He has to manually turn the paddles or lever so the motor turns. It must be ceased up, and he has to release it. I don’t know how long it can keep being fixed like that, so the time has come to just buy a new machine!

So, which model to purchase and how much to spend?

I don’t bake bread in the bread maker, so I my original train of thought was buy a machine as cheap as possible, but my Bread Goddess Mentor, Pen had other advice. If I thought I was going to continue baking bread, it made more sense to get one that could handle whole grains and would last for many many years…the Zojirushi!

Yeah, the Zojirushi would be lovely, but it’s really expensive. sigh. She said it was worth it since it was such a high quality product!

So, yes, I am thinking seriously about it.

Reading reviews at Amazon, watching videos on youtube and learning more about Zojirushi bread machines.

They have a cute little 1 lb machine too. It takes the same amount of space as a piece of paper! How cool is that! But the price is $30 under the full sized one. Space really isn’t that big of an issue, so I figure that the larger model # BBCC-X20 is probably the best choice.

The staff over at King Arthur Flour love the Zo machines too. There’s also pages and pages of reviews that are also raving about the Zo.

My husband has even heard of the name, as they make high quality coffee air pots too.

I found a very helpful review on Tammy’s Recipes web site. Funny, I found her site after a google search for “zojirushi bread machine made in china

Last night I was on the Bed Bath & Beyond web site and I noticed they had the full sized Zo for $220. With a 20% coupon, I could nab one of these beauties for only $176. I’d save on sales tax if I purchased in New Hampshire. Hmm, it was very reasonable!

I called BBB this AM asking about the Zo, and unfortunately they informed me that they only carry ONE bread machine. The Oster for $70. Darn! I could order it, but I would have to go to the store to order if I wanted to use my 20% off coupon, and to save on shipping & sales tax, I would need to pick it up at the store.. Darn, they don’t ship to store, they only ship to your house, so I would need to pay another $16 in shipping plus $11 for the 6.25% sales tax. That’s $203. I might as well just go through Amazon – their price is $214.

The blog post over at Tammy’s Recipes did mention that she watched the price of the machine go up and down, and finally when it got to a low price of $168, she bought it. I will watch it for a few days/weeks/months and see.

Thankfully, in the meantime, I think Mike fixed the old Breadman! He took it apart and found a “burr” on the motor spinning thingie. He sanded it down and hopefully that will buy me some time before I have to buy me a new bread machine!

Update: July 25, 2010: My bread guru Pen also put a bug in my brain about maybe getting a stand mixer for kneading bread. I’m thinking about it, but I think the bread machine would still be a better fit. She always gives me such interesting things to think about!

Some links on kneading bread dough with a stand mixer:

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/9634/bread-machine-vs-stand-mixer
http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/15788/can-i-use-my-bread-machine-freshly-ground-flour
http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/11648/stand-mixers-and-bread-baking-20th-amp-21st-centuries

ETA: September 24, 2010: My Breadman is still hanging on. The other night I thought it was a goner again, as it was hesitating while kneading some dough. I think the dough was too heavy and thick, as I added too much oatmeal I think.

But I used it again last night, and it’s still running like a champ. I’m considering a new bread machine, and I think I am leaning toward the West Bend 41300 Hi-Rise Electronic Dual-Blade Breadmaker, as it seems similar to the Zojirushi, but less than half the cost. The reviews online are very positive as well.

I can order from Walmart.com, and have it delivered to the local store. Then I’ll have 90 days to put it through its paces to make sure that it’s the one for me.

My Breadman is still working fine, and I know my younger sister could use it, so that might be what I’ll do.

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