Tired of high prices and stale bread? You are not alone in this regard, and many other folks are looking for cheaper and easier means to obtain their daily slices of bread. Many appliance manufacturers have responded to this new found demand for home bread makers, and today we are presented with many economical options to make your own bread. Years ago bread makers were only designed to make bread, but today we have bread makers that can cook and bake a multitude of different foods. One of these new and affordable machines is the Cookworks bread maker. This is a very versatile bread maker, and comes with a range of different options to make other kinds of food. Being on the cheaper side of the price scale, you might be wondering how it compares to some of the bigger and pricier brands such as Panasonic. Can it stand up to these more well known machines? Lets have a look at one of the more popular models below so you can try to decide for yourself.
A look at the Cookworks 909/7966 Model
One of the best selling Cookworks models is the 909/7966 version, otherwise known as the XBM1128. This machine comes in two different colors, a standard white and a black/stainless steel variant. The stainless steel one certainly looks a bit more modern, but that is simply our opinion.
The machine itself is very easy to operate, and there are no complicated settings or functionality. The lcd which sits on the top is nice and clear to read, and will beep once the cooking is finished or when you need to add ingredients. There are two handles on either side of the machine, and there is a stainless steel strip which goes around the middle of the machine on the white model which gives it a unique look. The lcd area has a stainless steel trim on both models, and the top of the machine has a large viewing window so you can keep an eye on your food when it is cooking.
This is a 600w bread maker, and comes with 12 different cooking modes to pick from. We will go into those various cooking modes in detail in a minute, but first lets look at some of the features. It has the ability to cook two different loaf sizes – medium and large. The medium setting will create loaves that are around 450g in weight, while the large setting will make loaves that are around 750g in total. This is a vertical style bread maker, which will explain why the loaf sizes are a little bit on the small size. The machine is quite small compared to other bread makers, and it measures in at 30cm x 37cm x 27cm. The power cord is around 70 cm in length, so you may need an extension cord if you don’t have a power outlet nearby. There are three crust options to pick from, and these include light, medium and dark.
Like most modern bread makers, the Cookworks 909/7966 comes with the all important delay timer. This timer can delay the cooking for up to 13 hours, which should give you more than enough flexibility to time the cooking of your bread. There is also a keep warm setting, which helps to ensure the bread stays warm while ensuring it does not become too moist. The entire machine is cool to the touch, which is a good safety feature if you have inquisitive children or pets who may snoop around the machine while it is cooking your food!
What programs does it have?
Now lets take a look at the 12 programs included with this model, as these are without a doubt what will make or break the bread maker. The first option is the “Basic” setting, which is for making very simple kinds of breads such as white or brown. This is designed for breads which use wheat or rye flour. The second option is the “French” setting. This is for lighter kinds of breads such as French bread which is made using well milled flour, and this mode has a longer rise period to allow the bread to aerate more. If you want a healthier kind of bread, then the third option called “Wholewheat” will come in handy. Wholewheat kinds of bread are slightly denser, so this modes gives them a bit of extra baking time. If you want to rush things a little, the fourth mode called “Quick” will speed things up a little. This is for fast cooking kinds breads which use baking soda or baking powder. If you like bread that has fruit or raisins, then option number 5 called “Sweet” is what you would use. This is for any kind of bread that uses sugar or even fruit juices, and it makes sure you get the best results possible.
Next up we have option number 6 which is called “Ultra-Fast 1″. This setting is designed for the quick baking of medium loaves. Cooking times are cut down quite a bit, but we should remind you that the bread probably won’t taste as good when using this option.
Option number 7 on the Cookworks bread machine is the “Ulra-Fast 2″ setting. This setting is exactly the same as the Ultra-Fast 1 setting except it is designed for larger loaves. We should note that if you are going to use the Ultra Fast modes, then you must use fast rising yeast for the best results.
Option number 8 is “Dough”, which as the name implies will make all kinds of different doughs for you. Pizza and bread rolls are common uses for this mode. Option number 9 is called “Jam”, and this is a means for you to make a variety of different jams. This is a nice inclusion for anyone who enjoys making their own kinds of jams. Option number 10 is the “Cake” setting. This allows you to mix and make your own kind of cakes, although they do come out in a bread loaf kind of shape! Option number 11 is the “Sandwich” setting which will provide you with a loaf of bread which is better suited for sandwiches. And lastly we have option 12 which is the “Bake” setting. If you feel your loaf needs a little more baking time, then you can use this mode to skip the kneading and rising phases and simply bake the bread.
So those are some of the many options you can choose from on a Cookworks bread maker. As you can see there are a variety of different foods you can make aside from bread, and this is quite impressive for a economical bread maker such as this. These are similar choices to what you would get with many premium bread makers, so we feel the Cookworks bread maker is definitely worth a look. Remember to shop around online to find the best possible deal on this bread machine.
If you lost your user manual, you can grab a new copy of it over here. Please note this manual is for an Akai XBM1128 which is identical to the Cookworks model.