* Prices may differ from that shown
I would consider my self and moderately experienced bread baked and very experienced general baker. We were given this as a wedding gift and were very excited.
The look and style - very modern, sleek lines. Looks stylish on the kitchen worktop and the full white design allows it to blend in and match.
Usability - once you get used to the programmes it's really very easy to use. Nice handle with a very easy to open lid. Controls are simple and everything is in a logical place. The blade and tin both come out easily and are simple to clean.
Baking - unfortunately not the best bread I've ever made. It can sometimes seem quite dense and no matter which recipe I follow I cannot avoid this. I havent tried the sweet breads yet so they may turn out a little better.
In all, it does the job but doesn't provide the best results in the world. No bread maker I've found makes the perfect loaf but other keyword models ive had in the past have come closer than this one does.
The smell of freshly baked bread is mouth-watering and invokes a sense of homeliness. To seal the deal, many people recommend baking a loaf of bread before prospective buyers come to view your house! The bread maker makes making a loaf as simple and easy as making a cup of tea! There is no need for mixing bowls, oven thermometers or spatulas. Like any form of home cooking; you get to control what goes into your product, how much salt for example, using gluten free or organic products. You get to experiment with different ingredients and wow your friends. I made a marmite loaf the other day. The general consensus? They either loved it or hated it!
I picked up this bread maker for £45.00. I was overwhelmed with choice when I went shopping for one. Some were ridiculously priced and I'd set myself a budget of £50.00. I only wanted a simple to use one that was of a decent size but not over cumbersome. This one is fairly compact compared to others on the market. The dimensions are 31cm(H) x 34.5cm(W) x 25(L)cm. It weighs 6.3kg so it is a bit of a killer lifting out of the cupboard all the time. It is quite heavy due to the metal oven inside. The machine is made from white plastic with the lid on the top and the buttons on the right hand size. There is a clear LCD display that tells you how far along the bread is in the process and you can also keep a check on it through the large window at the top. The only problem with the bread maker's design is that the clips that hold the bowl in are quite flimsy and not in keeping with the heavy duty appearance. Sometimes they come out of position but this is easily rectified.
So what does the box contain?
* 1 x Bread Maker
* 1 x Non-stick loaf pan
* 1 x Paddle
* 1 x Measuring spoon
* 1 x Recipe and instruction booklet
Is it easy to use?
The machine is very simple and easy to use; simply throw in the ingredients and off you go. It mixes the dough, kneads it and bakes it all in one machine. Simply set the right programme and voila.
The machine has twelve programmes to choose from. For example, a bread loaf, croissants and pizza dough. The loaves can be made in three sizes; 500g, 750g, and 1kg. I find the 750g loaf is perfect for the two of us for a day. As the loaf doesn't have any additives; the loaf doesn't last as long as a conventional sliced white. You can also decide on the darkness of the crust. A source of arguments in my household! I like light crusts and my boyfriend likes really dark golden crusts! The quickest setting cooks at 58 minutes and with the time delay function, up to 15 hours, you can wake up to fresh loaf or come home from work to one. An added feature is the eight-minute power interruption setting which means accidental unplugging or a brief power outage won't ruin your bread. The machine is extremely quiet so it will not keep you awake through the night. If you can't be there to get your bread out of the machine there is a handy little keep warm feature which keeps the bread at a warm temperature for up to an hour.
Is it easy to clean?
The pan is supposed to be non stick however some dough always ends up getting stuck to it. Take out the paddle and the pan and wash in warm water with a sponge. these are the only products to clean the bread maker. Make sure all dough is off ther paddle as it does tend to get inside a little bit. It comes off fairly easily. Thrn dry the parts so they do not rust and put back in the bread maker.
Is it economic?
The most expensive ingredient is by far the yeast so it's best to shop around for this. The other ingredients such as flour, oil and salt cost a small amount and last well in the cupboards. A 750g loaf will probably work out about 70p - 80p including the cost of the electricity. I think this is a small price to pay for a decent hot loaf and is cheaper than the supermarkets!
I'd fully recommend this machine. It's simple and easy to use; perfect for those with a hectic life style. It comes with a 1 year warranty and for the price I think it's an extremely good product.
I was bought this as a gift for christmas almost two years ago as i had been considering getting a breadmaker for some time.
The Kenwood 250 is so easy to use and in my opinion is much better than trying to make bread by hand.
The instructions are simple and easy to follow and I love the fact that you just measure the ingredients, put them in and a few hours later you have freshly baked bread.
I have used a few of the recipes from the recipe book that is provided and so far they have all come out really nicely. I have also used it with a packet mix when I have been in a rush and the results were just as good.
The smell wafting from the kitchen as the bread cooks is just amazing and the loaf once finished doesnt very often last the day as it is so delicious.
The breadmaker itself is easy to clean as the pan just lifts out and I think it looks quite stylish with its crisp white design.
I have an intolerance to gluten, and yet I enjoy bread. Usually the only gluten-free loaves available are from the Genius range which, while lovely and soft and very similar in texture and taste to 'real' bread, come in at £2+ a loaf. I have also experimented with packet mixes, which resolutely fail to rise. I enjoy the process of making bread, and I also make my own pizza dough from scratch. Attaining the final product having spent the last few hours mixing, kneading, leaving, kneading and baking is certainly satisfying, but it is also very time-consuming, to say the least. That is why I thought it might be a good idea to recruit the services of a bread maker, and have it do all the hard work for me.
I saw the Kenwood BM250 on offer for £42, and its extensive list of functions, coupled with its ability to bake gluten-free products, compelled me to purchase it. Ordinarily I might not choose this model, as although it boasts such a fantastic range of settings, it is not the most stylish design and is hardly inconspicuous in my kitchen. It is not overly bulky however, with dimensions of 31.0cm x 25.0cm x 34.5cm, so it can be stored out of sight if you have some space in your units.
The bread maker offers eleven different programmes, so you can choose a bread type to suit your taste. These options include standard loaves (up to a maximum capacity of 2.2lb), bread rolls and gluten free alternatives. There is also a rapid bake setting, in which the machine professes to deliver a loaf in 58 minutes. I used the rapid bake setting when making a 'normal' loaf for a friend, and was sceptical as to its success. I used the booklet to follow the instructions step by step, and remained in the house during the baking process, periodically returning to the machine to spy on my creation through the viewing window. Upon completion I allowed the loaf to stand for an hour before doling out slices of the fresh product. It was with some disappointment however, that we discovered the dough had not quite cooked perfectly, and there remained some stickiness to the mixture. I repeated this setting a week or so later, leaving the loaf to cook for an additional ten minutes. In this instance the results were much improved, but there remained a hint of glueyness to the slice at the very centre of the loaf. I have not used the rapid bake setting since then.
I have experimented with the gluten free cycle on numerous occasions, and while I am very happy with the taste of the products the machine has given me, just like the fateful packet mix mentioned previously, the bread has a tendency to resist rising. I have consulted numerous sources in an attempt to overcome this, and with a little tweaking and addition of different flour types I have achieved a little more success. I have however, resigned myself to the fact that gluten free bread is very tricky to make resemble a 'normal' loaf in terms of size, so am content to nibble on a compact loaf with a great taste.
Other functions that I have enjoyed in the bread maker are the keep warm setting, crust control and the non stick pan, which greatly aid you when it comes to removing bread from the machine. In total, this is a nice bread maker that gives you the option to create a variety of different bread-based products. If you are gluten intolerant however, you might just have to fork out the extra for a Genius loaf for the time being.
The Kenwood Breadmaker BM250, is really good, it compares well with the panosonic models with equivalent programmes, but is cheaper which is why I bought it. It makes excellent bread, cakes and dough allowing a wide variety of breads to be made. It is really easy to use, the instructions and recipes are easy to follow, and even the first loaf turned out well. Drawbacks to this Kenwood model compared with a panasonic are that it is slightly harder to get the bread pan into the breadmaker and requires a little patience. Also the hook which kneads the dough often gets left in the bread; this is quite annoying but not really a problem. The timer is great as it means that you can make bread overnight; a rapid bake programme is also available which is great for those who have no patience! Overall I think that this breadmaker is value for money and a good product.
For many years I used a Breville bread machine and was entirely happy with it until it wore out due to constant use. I bought a Kenwood from John Lewis, relying on their choice for quality.
As an experienced bread maker, I can find nothing positive to say about it. Where to start? The results are unpredictable - often a rock-hard lump of stodge. The hole underneath is unnacceptably large.
My previous machine made buns, pizzas, pasta etc. This one, only bread and cakes - the results with basic brown and white are bad enough, I wouldn't try anything else.
The rapid loaf requires the heating of fresh milk and an egg, so I consider there is no rapid option.
There is no light to enable you to see what is happening during the process. The display is not illuminated so is very difficult to read. I suspect the bleeping when the controls are set exceeds safe levels of noise, as it is almost painful to stand next to. It comes with measuring utensils but the figures rub off in no time. It is quite difficult to lock the pan down into its holder.
I very much regret not having had the time return it to John Lewis as totally unnacceptable immediately.
A neatly designed machine that fits well into my small kitchen and is well priced at just under £40 (from Tesco). The pan needs to be washed up by hand, but is easy to clean so this is not a chore.
I haven't experimented with recipes yet and have only used packet mix, but the only problem I've had was when I opened the machine during the proving process and the loaf sank a little. However, it does say not to do this in the instruction booklet, so handy tip - read the instructions! There is a small hole left by the mixing blade, but that doesn't matter.
The instruction booklet well laid out and is written in plain English.
As I was a bread machine virgin, I got some useful tips from an expert (thanks dad) before I used it:-
Always mix the ingredients to exact proportions.
Check the bread at the end of the first kneading session for consistency - add a little flour if too sticky, or a little water if too dry.
Wash the pan up as soon as the bread's been removed (soak in soapy water for a few minutes first).
Dry the pan and wipe a little oil around it and the blade once it's been washed - this will protect the finish on the pan and the loaf will turn out easily.
Add a little oil or butter to the bread mix to help the bread keep longer.
Et voila! A lovely loaf and a machine that works well. I'm definitely a convert and may never buy bread from the supermarket again. Saying that, my dad uses a completely different model and the results don't seem to be that different, so I'm not sure if this machine is any better or worse than any others on the market.
The rising cost of a loaf of bread was the major reason I decided to get a breadmaker, each time I went shopping it was more and more, you get the picture.
The Kenwood machine was £49 at John Lewis, though I now know you can get it direct from Kenwood website for around £45.
I couldn't wait to try this out so quickly scanned the recipe book for ingredients I would need.
The machine has a non stick breadpan into which you (simply) measure all the ingredients in to. This has to be in a certain order as in the recipe book as the yeast is the last to go in as if you leave it on the timer overnight it could mix and start to ferment if it mixes with the liquids.
It comes with a very handy measuring tool which slides along to the measurement needed ie teaspoon or tablespoon.
As I was keen to start I went for the 58 min fast bake loaf. I did find it hard to see the controls as the digital box was very tiny. It set off knending and mixing and was a bit noisy, at first when it stopped I thought it had broken but then realised the bread has to rise and prove (duh). It has a handy window in the lid which I was constantly peeping in to look at it's progress. The smell is lovely and it kind of creeps through the house.
The results for a first loaf were very encouraging, it had risen well and looked a nice golden colour. Getting it out of the tin was easy, though where the paddle had been made a hole. It seemed an eternity waiting for it to cool down but after about 30 minutes we had lovely bread and jam, yum! The texture was kind of cakey, sweeter than normal bread and kind of yellowy in colour.
I then progressed onto wholemeal, seeded, granary and ordinary white bread. The results of the longer to bake load were not very good and I have produced lots of breese blocks! I tried reducing the amount of liquid but to no avail.
Having looked at the troubleshooting section in the handbook there are loads of possibilities which lead me to believe it's not as easy as it should be even though I weighed the ingredients very carefully, which is apparently the 'key'.
Having said that I have made lots of the rapid bake loaves which give consistent results.
It has programmes that can make jam and some tea loaves and bread like citrus and walnut loaf of which I've yet to try. Gluten free recipes are also available for those who need gluten free bread.
You can make loaves in sizes of 500g 750g and 1kg and adjust the crust browing, the machine will keep the bread warm for up to 1 hour. The breadpan is non stick so I usually find the only dough to clean out is that which has stuck around the removeable metal paddle so a quick wash usually suffices, I have not put this into my dishwasher as it is a bit of an awkward shape and looking at the mechanism on the botton I don't think it would be suitable.
The machine itself is quite compact and fits nicely in one of my units.
I think I will have to keep on trying until I hit on the 'perfect loaf'!
Short name: Kenwood BM250