Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Succotash Success, Bread Machine Fail

You win some, you lose some. That was the case with last night's dinner. First, the win. I'm testing a few recipes by Zel Allen (author of The Nut Gourmet) for her new book, starting with this vibrant Harvest Succotash:

Isn't it gorgeous? The green beans are a mix of limas and edamame, creating a fun twist on an old classic. This dish came together in less than 40 minutes, and it made a ton. I'll be eating plenty of succotash over the next few days.

Now for the lose. I really thought fresh wheat bread would be a great accompaniment to the succotash. I recently purchased a gently-used Sunbeam bread machine from Poopie Bitch for $20. She was about to sell it in a yard sale, but I snatched it up first. I've always wanted a bread maker.

The machine came with a little recipe book, which contained instructions for Whole Wheat Bread. It called for plain ole' whole wheat flour, and that really didn't sound right. I always thought bread machines required special bread flour. But I tossed in the whole wheat flour as instructed. I let the machine do its thing while I was at work Tuesday, and I came home to this:

What a sad, inflated loaf of bread, right? Not sure what happened, but next time I'll try whole wheat BREAD flour instead. Though the bread looked crappy, it didn't affect the taste or texture. I spread this slice with a little Earth Balance and garlic salt and enjoyed it with Zel's tasty succotash.

19 comments:

Maida said...

I've been doing a lot of bread machine baking lately and I found that you can make your own bread flour by adding 1 TB of vital wheat gluten per cup of flour. This works great with all purpose flour and I would imagine the results would be equally as good with whole wheat.

Maida said...

Just had another thought-- are you sure your yeast is fresh? I keep mine in the fridge, just FYI.

Keri - I Eat Trees said...

I love my bread machine- I make all our bread in it- and I've had that particular fail happy to me twice: once I fell asleep and didn't get the loaf out until morning and the second time I went shopping and came home long after it had finished, so I'm thinking you have to get it out right away at the "done" beep or it continues to bake at a gradually lower temperature.

Mihl said...

When I used the bread machine, this happened to me all the time! That's one reason why I now use my hands and the oven. There can be many reasons for this happening but I don't think your flour is the reason. More proabably it's the amount of water. It also happened to me when I opened the machine during the baking process for example to remove the kneading hook.

Rick said...

send me some succotash!

Buddy said...

Hehehe, that made me laugh on a boring work morning. I need to get my bread machine out and give it a try.

Sheridanna said...

I haven't used my bread machine in forever! I need to....just thinking about homemade bread is making me hungry!

The Shenandoah Vegan said...

I don't know how 'Poopie Bitch' got her nickname, but I hope you washed out the bread machine really well before you used it.

Kiersten said...

I've had a bit of trouble in the bread department too lately. I don't have a bread machine though. I try to do it by hand, but it doesn't always end well.

sTyliSH1 said...

I've always wanted a bread machine also! You should ask your friend if she used it and if she had any tricks :)

Helen said...

Hey Bianca! I really enjoy your blog! I've got a recipe for whole wheat bread on my blog that comes out perfect every time, if you're interested. Granted, it doesn't use a bread maker but it is very delicious! http://whyiconsumeart.blogspot.com/2010/07/homemade-whole-wheat-sandwich-bread.html

Tanya said...

Wow, that succotash looks so good!!

I also have a bread machine (Zojirushi) although I use it mostly for whole wheat pizza dough. I think if you add a little vital wheat gluten, as Maida said, that will help! I usually do that, but I try to also use whole wheat bread flour too....and I did buy yeast especially for a bread machine. But even though some breads don't look great, they still TASTE great :)

Jen said...

thufferin' thuccotash! that looks really good. and thanks for showing your bread failure. i've never had much luck with bread machine breads. i'll have to find one at a garage sale and get started again.

Erin said...

Poor little loaf of bread! I've had similar bread machine disasters, but the results are usually at least edible.

Eric said...

Last time i used my bread machine it was a failure as well. I kinda gave up on it because of it.

Carol said...

The Succotash IS beautiful, and I'll bet diversely tasty with all those flavors, seasonings, & textures.
You find the greatest recipes, and create even better ones.
Thanks, Bianca!

Tamara said...

It is your yeast, not your flour. Make sure you're using bread machine yeast, that it is fresh, and if so, try a new batch. Anytime it collapses like that, it has something to do with the leavening agent, which in this case is your yeast.

jodye @ 'scend food said...

Your succotash looks wonderful, I love the edamame/lima bean twist! SImple vegetable preparations like this always get me excited!

Ali - YumVeggieBurger said...

weird, after not hearing the word for years... suddenly I'm hearing/reading so many mentions of succotash this summer!