I love your blog – have gotten so many great ideas. Now a question – I love to make homemade pizza, and I agree with your comments that you can make it relatively healthy and inexpensive compared to delivery pizza. And everyone in my household loves pizza. My question — is buying a bread machine worth it for making pizza dough (and other homemade bread)? I’ve never owned a bread machine but have always been curious. Now that I have a spacious kitchen, I actually have room to store one. Any suggestions? Is a bread machine a good frugal investment in the long term for homemade pizza dough and other stuff?
I generally make my pizza dough with my Kitchen Aid stand mixer, but do the rising, etc. in my oven on the bread-proof cycle. It’s a little more work than I would like for quick pizza meals, but it is good!
Several people have written or commented lately asking me about the brand of my bread-maker, whether I recommend one etc~so your email is quite timely!
To start with I use a West Bend bread-maker. It is an older model that we’ve had for quite some time. About 2 years ago it managed to vibrate itself off the counter while kneading bread, breaking the cover off and cracking the casing-I now have to prop up one corner of the machine with a potholder each time I use it. And the lid falls off when I open it up. But hey-it still works.
Would I recommend one for you? Hmm, yes and no.
No, I would not recommend that you run right out and buy a new breadmachine. Although the price has come down quite a bit on these units (a cursory Google search showed prices from $200 to $44) it’s still a chunk of change.
Yes, I do think one could be useful for you-especially if you,like me, plan on using it as merely a bread mixing, kneading & intial rising device. My recommendation to you is to take a little jaunt to your local thrift store-something like a Goodwill or Salvation Army. Those places usually have 2 or 3 breadmachines, older styles, just sitting on the shelves.
Pick out a nice unit with the larger pan size (2lbs). Test it out*-plug it in and run the dough cycle for a few minutes to see if the little blade inside rotates around like it is supposed to. You don’t need to worry too much about the heating element etc-with the dough cycle it is only used to slightly warm the pan and aid with rising.
Head home with your bargain priced item and enjoy your breadmaking. If you find that you really love it and can’t live without it, then consider asking for a nicer model next year at Christmas 🙂
Do you have a question for Frugal Upstate? I’d love to hear from you! Use my contact form to drop me a line and I’ll answer as soon as I can!
*Most thrift stores operate with an “as is” policy on all appliances and electronics. Because of this they usually have several outlets that are left available for patrons to test items.