- Hand Kneading vs Stand Mixer
- What Is The Correct KitchenAid Speed For Kneading Dough?
- How Long To Knead Bread Dough In KitchenAid Mixer
- How To Make Dough With KitchenAid Mixer
- Best KitchenAid Mixer For Bread
- Making Dough With KitchenAid Couldn’t Be Easier!
Baking bread at home is not just a culinary endeavor; it is an experience that engages all your senses, from the tactile joy of kneading the dough to the delightful aroma that fills your home as the bread bakes. Yet, the process of kneading can often be a strenuous task, especially when done by hand.
If you have a KitchenAid mixer, you’ve probably asked yourself “How long do you knead bread dough in a KitchenAid mixer?”. In this guide, we delve deep into the art of kneading, unraveling the secrets behind achieving that perfect dough consistency with your KitchenAid mixer. We will explore the optimal settings for different types of flour and what speed to knead dough to ensure you get the best results every time.
Whether you are a seasoned baker or just starting your baking journey, understanding the nuances of kneading in a KitchenAid mixer can be a game-changer. From the ideal kneading durations for various flours to the best KitchenAid models for bread-making, we cover it all to help you master the art of baking bread at home.
Hand Kneading vs Stand Mixer
In the world of bread-making, one question often arises: “How long should you knead bread dough?” The answer, as you might expect, varies depending on whether you are kneading the dough by hand or using a stand mixer. Let’s delve into the specifics of each method to help you gauge the ideal kneading time for your bread-making endeavors.
When you opt for hand kneading, you are signing up for a labor of love. This traditional method requires a good amount of physical effort and time. Generally, kneading by hand takes about 15 to 20 minutes to reach the optimal gluten development, which gives the bread its desirable texture. It is a tactile and rewarding process, allowing you to connect with the dough, feeling its transformation as you work it. On the downside, it destroys your arms and you feel sore for days after.
Using A Stand Mixer
Enter the KitchenAid stand mixer, a modern baker’s trusted companion. Kneading bread with KitchenAid significantly reduces the kneading time with efficiency and precision. On average, a stand mixer takes about 8 to 15 minutes to knead the dough to perfection. It not only saves time but also ensures consistency in the texture of the dough, thanks to the uniform KitchenAid kneading speed. Moreover, it allows for multitasking, freeing you to attend to other aspects of your recipe while the mixer does the hard work.
What Is The Correct KitchenAid Speed For Kneading Dough?
When it comes to kneading dough in a KitchenAid mixer, determining the correct speed is crucial for achieving the perfect consistency and texture in your bread. Let’s address the optimal KitchenAid knead speed and delve into the reasons behind the recommended settings.
KitchenAid experts and seasoned bakers alike recommend using a lower speed setting for kneading dough. Specifically, the ideal KitchenAid dough hook speed is set at speed 2. This speed allows for a gentle yet effective kneading process, promoting optimal gluten development without overworking the dough.
Why speed 2?
Utilizing speed 2 ensures a controlled kneading process that closely mimics hand kneading, allowing the dough to develop a smooth, elastic, and pliable texture. This speed fosters the right environment for the proteins in the flour to interact harmoniously, creating a dough with a superior structure and texture.
Venturing to higher speeds might seem like a time-saving strategy, but it comes with its set of drawbacks. Using a higher KitchenAid knead speed can lead to over-kneading, which breaks down the gluten structure, resulting in a dense and chewy bread. Moreover, higher speeds generate more heat, potentially killing the yeast, a vital agent for fermentation and leavening in bread.
Additionally, a higher KitchenAid dough hook speed can cause the machine to wobble excessively, posing a risk to the mixer’s longevity and stability. It can also incorporate too much air into the dough, affecting the final texture of the bread.
How Long To Knead Bread Dough In KitchenAid Mixer
Baking bread is a more intricate process compared to whipping up a batch of cookies or cupcakes, where you can often just combine all the ingredients in a mixer and let it work its magic. When it comes to bread, understanding the kneading process becomes pivotal, especially in determining how long to knead dough in a KitchenAid mixer.
Flour contains two primary proteins that form gluten when combined. The kneading process facilitates the development of this gluten, giving the dough an elastic structure and the strength it needs to trap gases, which allows it to rise beautifully in the oven. The texture of your dough post-kneading should be smooth, stretchy, and soft, a testament to well-developed gluten.
Choosing The Right Flour
The type of bread you bake dictates the kind of flour you should use, making it essential to understand the different types of bread flours and the gluten content in each. The kneading time is significantly influenced by the flour and other ingredients used in your recipe.
A favorite in many kitchens, this flour is versatile and used in everything from cookies to bread. Its high gluten and protein content facilitates water and liquid absorption, creating the right structure for your bread. Typically, the kneading process with this flour in a mixer spans 7-10 minutes, depending on the brand used.
Derived from hard wheat, bread flour boasts a higher protein percentage. When paired with yeast, it results in a chewy texture, courtesy of active gluten. This flour allows for a quicker kneading process in a stand mixer, generally taking about 10-12 minutes, brand-dependent.
Whole Wheat Flour
Produced by milling wheat grains, whole wheat flour yields a denser and thicker dough, this type of flour requires a longer kneading time due to its higher liquid absorption capacity. Expect to knead a dough made with this flour for around 12-15 minutes to achieve the desired consistency.
How To Make Dough With KitchenAid Mixer
Embarking on the journey to create the perfect bread begins with mastering the art of making dough using your KitchenAid mixer. Here is how I achieve a dough that is nothing short of perfection using my trusty stand mixer.
Step 1: Mixing The Ingredients
Start by adding the wet ingredients to your mixer, followed by the dry ingredients. Using the paddle attachment, mix the ingredients at speed 1 for a duration of 1 to 2 minutes to incorporate them well.
Step 2: First Resting Period
Once the ingredients are well mixed, allow the mixture to rest for a period of 5 to 10 minutes. This resting period is crucial as it allows the flour to hydrate properly, setting the stage for successful kneading.
Step 3: Initial Kneading
After the resting period, switch to the dough hook attachment and knead the mixture at speed 2 for a span of 3 to 5 minutes. This step initiates the gluten development process, which is vital for a good bread structure.
Step 4: Second Resting & Kneading
Let the dough rest for an additional 5 minutes before kneading it again for 2 to 5 minutes. During this kneading phase, it is important to check the dough regularly to ensure it is becoming smooth and pliable, a sign that it is developing nicely.
Step 5: Final Kneading & Proving
If the dough requires further kneading, give your mixer a 5-minute break before kneading for another 5 minutes. Repeat this process until you achieve a well-kneaded dough. Finish off by kneading the dough by hand for a minute, and then set it aside for proving, the final step in the dough preparation process.
Generally, plain flour doughs, such as those used for white, pita, or French bread, will be ready in about 7-10 minutes of total kneading time. Harder or wetter doughs, like those for whole wheat bread, seed bread, or sourdough, require a bit more time, generally between 12-15 minutes. Simpler recipes like breakfast rolls and cornbread have a quicker kneading timeline, coming together in just 5-7 minutes.
I know it seems like there are a lot of resting times in my method, but allowing the dough the rest multiple times between kneading will help with gluten formation. Alternatively, you can pop all your ingredients in your mixer, attach the KitchenAid dough hook and start kneading at speed 2 for around 10 minutes continuously or until the dough looks plump and taut. Here’s a quick video to help you make the perfect dough in your stand mixer.
Best KitchenAid Mixer For Bread
When it comes to baking bread regularly, especially varieties that involve stiff doughs, the choice of your KitchenAid mixer becomes a pivotal decision. While the temptation to opt for smaller mixers like the KitchenAid Mini or the Artisan series might be high due to their compact size and aesthetic appeal, they might not be the best fit for those passionate about bread-making.
The Limitations of Smaller Mixers
Smaller KitchenAid mixers such as the KitchenAid Mini and the Artisan series, while being excellent choices for lighter baking tasks, find themselves at a disadvantage when it comes to handling stiff doughs. Their motors are not built to withstand the demands of heavy, consistent bread-making, posing a risk of overheating and potentially reducing the lifespan of the mixer.
That’s not to say they can’t knead dough. If you have an Artisan, of course you can make bread dough in it. You just need to watch the quantity of dough you are kneading. You also need to make sure the mixer isn’t being overworked. If the head of your small KitchenAid mixer is wobbling too much, you might need to stop.
The Need for a Bigger Motor
Stiff doughs, characteristic of many bread recipes, require a robust motor that can handle the resistance they offer during the kneading process. A mixer equipped with a larger motor not only ensures that the dough is kneaded to perfection but also guarantees a longer life for your appliance, making it a wise choice for individuals who bake bread frequently.
Recommended KitchenAid Mixer For Bread
For those who find themselves making bread often, opting for mixers from the KitchenAid Professional Series or even exploring the options in the Pro-Line and Commercial Series would be beneficial. These mixers come with powerful motors that can effortlessly handle stiff and hydrated doughs, making the process of bread-making a breeze. Moreover, they offer larger-capacity mixing bowls, allowing you to work with larger quantities of ingredients, a feature that is particularly useful for those who bake in bulk. In terms of how long to knead dough in a larger KitchenAid mixer, it certainly takes less time than a smaller mixer.
To find out more about the best KitchenAid mixer for kneading dough, click here.
Making Dough With KitchenAid Couldn’t Be Easier!
As we have seen, the choice of flour and the kneading time it requires, the speed setting on your KitchenAid mixer, and the type of dough hook you use, all play pivotal roles in determining the quality of your bread. Equipped with the right knowledge and the perfect KitchenAid mixer, you are well on your way to becoming a master bread maker, ready to delight your family and friends with home-baked bread that is a labor of love and a testament to your baking skills.