188 of 192 people found the following review helpful
on 10 January 2011
I have been really pleased with the results using this machine.
Bread and cakes have all been very good. Not having any crust colour problems as have been reported by others.
The small and medium size bread settings seem to produce a slightly better colour if you want a darker finish to your loaf.
Very good value compared to some other models. A five ***** product.
310 of 320 people found the following review helpful
on 27 November 2010
My last Russell Hobbs breadmaker had lasted for 5 years, but was coming to the end of it's life so I ordered this in the hope that it would be the same. I had been so impressed with the bread that I have baked in it that I wanted a similar replacement, with not too many add ons and fidly programmes that I would never use. The company has changed the spec a little from my old machine, but to be honest it will probably be more useful to have the new functions, as I love malt loaf,and am a chocoholic!(It bakes a chocolate and walnut loaf). The only thing that it does not do now is the "bake only" function. The first loaf I baked was perfect and exactly what I would expect from my old machine, so I am really pleased. If you are looking for a simple breadmaker that gives fabulous results with no hassle then try this one. I have used the Russell Hobbs helpline in the past when I wore out my first breadpan, and they were really helpful. The delivery time from Amazon was superb! I ordered it on Sunday and received it on Tuesday.
338 of 354 people found the following review helpful
on 12 July 2011
I won't lie - I was nervous about buying a breadmaker, there seems to be such a variety of reviews and opinions on a host of forums about disastrous results, waste of money and poor machine quality. I went for this as a very good priced breadmaker, thinking if I get on well with it I can invest in a Panasonic (which cost around £100)and seems to be the brand that everyone says are foolproof and don't have the niggles that cheaper models seem to. I am really pleased with this breadmaker, not only was delivery really speedy but it is easy to use and the results are great. My first loaf wasn't a success but that was entirely my fault for making a couple of mistakes; the white loaves and wholemeal loaves I had made since have been really great, tasty, golden and very light. I think if you follow the instruction book to the letter you can't go wrong; make sure that you weigh the water as it says - it is unbelievable how inaccurate a measuring jug is. It does not come with any of the frills like measuring cups or a really in-depth recipe book but if you have measuring scales, a tablespoon and a teaspoon you will be fine. If you want to buy-in ingredients so you can start baking the moment your breadmaker arrives you will need: strong bread flour, olive oil, sugar, salt, milk powder and dried yeast (I used fast acting dried yeast from the supermarket which worked fine) - this will make a lovely regular loaf of white bread. Just buy both wholemeal and white bread flour if you want to make wholemeal.
A couple of points that seem to be referred to on forums which worried me:
- the paddle comes away inside the baked loaf: it does but with a cocktail stick and a bit of perseverance you can get it out fairly easily - it isn't a reason not to buy this model and seems a common problem with lots of breadmakers..
- the loaf is very pale: it doesn't give a very dark loaf, I am not sure you would get that with a breadmaker anyway, but by selecting the darkest setting (there are three levels) I have been able to produce a lovely golden brown loaf that has a crisp crust, soft top and is light inside. I have not tried the 55 mins cycle, although I will, but I cannot think this would produce the quality of bread and crisp golden crust I am after - if you want a really speedy loaf then it maybe isn't for you or you may have to be prepared to compromise on the characteristics of your loaf.
I would recommend this breadmaker - it is affordable, easy to use if you follow the instructions and weigh ingredients accurately and will fill your home with a wonderful smell and your tummy with wonderful bread.
49 of 51 people found the following review helpful
on 12 April 2011
Since it arrived have never bought another loaf ,its easy to use and the results have been perfect every time.Some Supermarkets now sell 500 gm mixes and all you have to do is add water.its very easy to use
26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
on 18 May 2011
Wanted an 'entry level' breadmaker for me and the missus as we waste so much as there is only the two of us. Searched for a reasonably priced breadmaker, and boy did I find it. First experimental loaves were all edible. Now I'm no expert as this is my first machine but if and when this one dies I will look to replace with the same model, yes the display could have been in a better, more visible colour,you can still see it though!! but the well written instruction book (and very witty and human in places) was superb, the maker itself is not too big and I think this could be the best machine to start your bread making ventures with. I highly recommend this product.
106 of 113 people found the following review helpful
on 10 December 2010
I have owned this bread machine for just over two years.
I would say the plus points are
1. Simple to use
2. Nice range of programs
3. Does jam (although I haven't used this program)
4. Not expensive
The negative points are
1. Even on the dark setting, the crust is very pale
2. The reliability is poor, after two years the rotor arm dropped out the bucket, which now needs to be replaced at a cost of £20
3. It does not seem possible to turn off the "add soft ingredients now" beep alarm, which means if you put it on overnight to have fresh bread in the morning, it wakes you up at 5am!!!
Considering these negative points, especially the short life span of the bread bucket, I would take a look at alternative products and certainly would not take another machine from this manufacturer in future.
76 of 81 people found the following review helpful
on 7 August 2011
Comes with an excellent recipe book, and I've made three loaves so far - all have turned out excellent with very little effort on my part. I particularly like the fact that there is an option to make one of three different size loaves, and the timer shows a countdown, so you can be around to take the loaf out when it is ready. Glad I bought this and would definitely buy it again.
To anybody who has failures, check the following -
1) It is important to add the ingredients IN THE ORDER STATED IN THE RECIPE, so that the salt DOES NOT come into contact with the yeast until baking starts. And don't leave the salt out - from previous baking experience I can tell you this gives you a tasteless loaf!
2) Check the type of yeast that you're using. The stuff called 'easy blend' that usually comes in a big tin is not suitable for breadmaker technique, only for hand baking, where you can 'sponge' the yeast and liquid beforehand. It has to be the type usually sold in sachets that calls itself 'fast acting' and says 'suitable for breadmakers' on the package. If it doesn't say that, it isn't!
Other than that, this machine seems to be idiot proof, and will make cakes as well!
75 of 80 people found the following review helpful
on 17 October 2010
The first few times I made bread with this machine the brown bread crust turned out a bit pale. But I found the more I used it the more crust colour the bread took on. Very easy to use, clear instructions, small compact machine with excellent visibility window. Gluten free bread turns out well too. I was so pleased with this breadmaker I bought one for my sister.
84 of 90 people found the following review helpful
on 21 July 2011
I've only had this machine for a week, and have made just 2 loaves, but I'm very impressed with it.
It's a nice size, not too heavy if you want to move it about, sits firmly on the worktop while in action, and isn't too noisy. The instructions are well written (amusingly so), very clear, containing several recipes. If they all work as well as the two I have tried, I'll be very pleased.
You can choose from three loaf sizes - small, medium and large - and you can choose a light, medium and dark crust. The controls are easy to set. I started by making the basic white loaf, medium size, and have followed up with the small wholemeal loaf, both with the medium crust. Both were a great success - I won't be buying bread again, not when I can make fab loaves like these! Although both were nice, the wholemeal one was slightly tastier, I thought, but that's just my opinion. The great thing is that you know exactly what is in your loaf - no artificial additives and preservatives here. As it doesn't contain preservatives, it's not going to keep as long as shop bought loaves, but you won't want to leave it that long anyway! It keeps a couple of days, and that's long enough - remember, you are making absolutely fresh bread, and you can always make another one when you need it.
The paddle does get stuck in the bottom of the loaf, but it's no bother to prise it out afterwards. Yes, it leaves a hole, but it's in the bottom of the loaf, and I don't see it as an issue. There is a timer, which means you can make bread overnight, but I haven't tried that. It has a nice big window in the top so you can watch what's happening. It also has a keep warm function, so your loaf stays warm for up to an hour after cooking.
One word of caution - and I think this probably applies to all breadmakers - you do need to weigh out your ingredients very carefully. The instructions recommend digital scales, which I don't have, but I have had no problem with using my old manual scales. I took the time to weigh and measure everything out most carefully and followed the instructions about putting them in the machine to the letter (you have to do it in a certain order). It's worth taking the time to do this. The machine does all the hard work when it comes to mixing, kneading, proving and baking, after all. I was thrilled with the two loaves that I produced, especially since I have never made bread before!
Altogether a great little machine.
45 of 48 people found the following review helpful
on 1 March 2011
This is the third breadmaker that I have purchased and, of the three, it makes the best bread. The machine is probably not as solid as my first, which was a Breville costing more than twice as much, but better made than my first Russel Hobbs for a similar price.The machine is used 4 or 5 times per week as my wife and I love homemade bread. The shape of loaves is good and the paddle, having been redesigned, does not produce too intrusive a hole in the base of the loaf.The likely weakness is in the 2 clips that hold the breadpan in place in the machine, although they appear to be better than on the earlier model. Time will tell, but I think this is an excellent breadmaker for a relatively low price.