Most helpful positive review
40 of 40 people found the following review helpful
on November 27, 2012
I've been making bread in my Cuisinart Bread machine for my family until it broke down a few months ago. I have spent quite awhile doing research on various machines and was very impressed with the reviews that Zojirushi bread machines received. I decided on the Zojirushi Virtuoso because of the modification made with the heat element in the lid to help brown the top of the bread. I figured, that if I am going to invest this kind of money in a machine I want the one with updated features.
First, I am truly impressed with how quickly I received my purchase from Amazon. I bought the item on a Saturday and got free shipping (which was supposed to take 5-7 days) and it arrived two days later. The packaging was great, no damage to the box, padding inside to ensure that it didn't slide around.
When I unwrapped the machine I was immediately thrilled with the quality of the machine itself. Compared to my Cusinart bread machine you can tell you get what you pay for. The machine is solid and doesn't feel like tin like my previous machine. The bread pan is also impressive. I love the handles on each side (which is also a new feature on this Zojirushi model), the pan is also very solid with a good weight to it. Another big improvement from my previous machine is how the easy it is to insert and remove the pan into the machine (this is the one major thing I hated about the Cusinart bread machine).
The first bread I made was Challah (egg bread). This is used on the dough setting then braided by hand and finished in the oven. The dough setting worked perfectly. The double paddle made a big difference in the texture of the dough. I then made a bread machine recipe for oatmeal bread (my mom used to make this when I was a kid). I found the recipe online. It turned out great, it didn't rise as nicely as I would have liked, but it browned perfectly and it was yummy.
Tonight I decided to try the original recipe my mother used to make (not meant for the bread machine) and modified it slightly. The results were AMAZING!! You can take any bread recipe and modify it slightly for your bread machine.
Here is the recipe if you want to give it a try.
Wholesome Oatmeal Bread:
1 cup of warm water
2 Tbsp of unsalted butter
2 Tbsp of brown sugar
1/4 cup of honey
1 1/2 tsp of kosher salt
1/2 Quick Oats
2 3/4 cups of white bread flour
2 1/4 tsp of bread machine yeast
(I put the ingredients in the machine in this order making an indentation in the flour on top for the yeast to sit)
Put the machine on the Basic Regualr cycle. I like the medium crust setting.
I highly recommend this machine. If you are looking to invest in a quality machine this is worth every penny, I've had a cheaper machine and it only lasted a year before it completely died. This machine is also incredibly quiet and it's nice not to have to babysit it to make sure it doesn't bounce off the counter during the kneading cycle...LOL!!