I've owned this product for about a month now and made a fair bit of bread with it. I've followed recipies from a certain reputable company and played around abit with recipies on the net in addition to taking advice from friends with expierence with breadmakers. TBH - i was very tempted to buy a panasonic but from reading all the good reviews on here, i thought i would risk it and save myself The £60 extra that i would cost for the panasonic. I've made white bread, whole meal and grannery with this machine, and the results have been what i would term average. By average i mean, they are ok loaves but not entirely bread shaped. They all tend to sink just a little towards the end of the process (the bake). They come out square shaped but the consistency of the bread is ok. Now my mother reliably informs me, as i'm no expert on bread making, that all bread makers produce bread thats a little square. However my mate at work has a panasonic and he bought a loaf in that he made at home. It looked as if it was shop bought!!! I wouldn't have believed he made it, if it didn't have the paddle mark clearly visable in the bottom of it. Now there are two possiblities here. 1. This bread machine is not as good as the panasonics. 2. I'm not doing it right. I've taken loads of advice from friends who make their own bread and i've even reseached it on the net so i understand whats happening through out the making process. i've tried more yeast, more sugar, more salt, less water etc.... and I'm reaching the point where i'm starting to think its the machine, as i've tried virtually everything to get my loaves bread shaped. If anyone has any advice please feel free to comment on this post but if you want my advice, spend the little extra and buy a panasonic if you want perfection. In hind sight i think thats what i should have done. .....6wks later... Note: since this review, another colleague has bought a Panasonic. His bread is perfect everytime as well! My bread is still plagued by the same issues. I get slightly better results when baking on setting 1, which is supposed to be for white bread. They consistently sink when using setting 3 unless i lower the yeast content by 25%, which is the Granery/Malt/Brown setting. I'm definately going to invest in a panasonic at some point.
....... 2-3 months later - Ok i've sorted this and im happy now.:) I've found a recipe that works perfectly, giving me soft spongy light bread, but it must have a small pinch of a secret ingredient..... Vitamin C. Here goes.... I always use setting 1 at small loaf size and add the ingredients in this order. 270ml water, 1 tsp salt, 1tbs sugar, 2 tbs olive oil, 400g flour (I use 300g premium malt from bakery, 100g any white), make a hole in the flour and add 1tsp yeast, and a tiny bit of vitamin C (This is key to getting that extra bit of rise) turn the machine on....... Perfect mouth watering loaves every time. Finally happy with this machine. I would still probably opt for the better panasonic next time though, as they do seem to be alot less tempermental than this one.