A dough/kneading question
Hey all, I've decided the next thing I want to conquer is making things with yeast. Cravings have made me select cinnamon buns as my 1st project.
I own a handheld mixer but no fancy Kitchen Aid with dough hook. I know I can knead by hand but I was wondering whether before the kneading I could use my handheld mixer or do I have to gently mix things with something like a wooden spoon/whisk? Any help would be greatly appreciated!
I don't think a hand held mixer would help at all in the beginning. I'd just do it all by hand and not dirty another utensil. You could start w/ a wooden spoon and start the mixing that way but at some point you'll be getting your hands in there anyway (even with a stand mixer I do).
You could use a food processor, though.
I would caution against using a handheld mixer to knead dough. Before I got my stand mixer, I thought I would cheat and try to use the handheld mixer to knead the dough and the result is that the dough rolls itself around the metal beaters until it reaches the top and gets clogged in the holes where the metal beaters attach. My handheld mixer also has a grill (spaces where the air vents from the mixer) and it even gets stuck in them! It causes a HUGE mess and then you have to take all of the partially mixed dough off the handheld mixer and still mix by hand. You end up with giant dough globs wrapped around the metal beaters. Plus, it overworks the handheld mixer and I've had mine just shut down because the dough is too much for the mixer to handle. (If this happens, let the mixer cool down for a few minutes, get the dough off the beaters and try to restart it)
I'm in no way a good (or even semi-good) bread maker, although I do make bread from time to time, and there may be a way to mix dough with a handheld mixer but I would caution against it if you haven't made bread a lot before. Even with my stand mixer, KitchenAid recommends that you only knead dough on a certain setting.
Hope this helps and good luck!
Hand mixers are for batters, not dough. At least not a dough as heavy as a bread dough. As previously stated, you're better off mixing with a wooden spoon (or other stout spoon) and then hand kneading. You can use a food processor but, IMO, it's not effective enough to bother; just another cleaning chore that really shouldn't be necessary. Initial hand mixing takes a relatively short period of time - it's the kneading that tends to become laborious but if you take on the task in a cheerful creative spirit it becomes a joy.
Remember - your kneading is not complete until that window pane test is successful. Then it's rest, ferment, degas, rest, shape, proof, bake. Or a process somewhat similar.
Here's one that you won't even need to knead: