Knetmaschinentest: Thermomix

Since the inquiries about various kneading machines have piled up recently, I decided to introduce various kneaders on the blog in the next few weeks.

There are: Thermomix, Kitchenaid, Kenwood, Klarstein Bosch, …

Every kneading machine is subjected to the following tests:

  • Pure rye bread
  • Mixed rye bread
  • Enriched dough
  • Wheat dough with high hydration 80% (TA 180)

Thermomix

The Thermomixer is a food mixer with various functions. It can: mix, grind, chop, blend, whip, stir, cook, steam cook, weigh, heat in a controlled manner and emulsify, but can it also knead dough?

To answer this question you have to understand the function of the Thermomix first, because the Thermomix does not have a kneading arm like other kneading machines but has a knife for making dough. Many readers will now think that this cannot work, but this technology, the “Stephan mixer”, has been around in the bakery for a long time.

The picture shows the so-called mixing knife. At low speed (level 1) the mixing knife is used for stirring, at medium speed (level 2-4) for mixing and at high speed for chopping and kneading.

By tapping the left and right rotation symbol on the display, the direction of rotation of the knife can be changed as desired. This function is very important when making dough!

The 5 most important functions for baking using the Thermomix:

1. Scale:

When the pot is clamped in the Thermomix, a scale can be activated at the push of a button. This function enables quick and accurate weighing of the recipe.

2.Timing:

The Thermomix monitors the time and can be set manually on the display.

3. Temperature setting:

The Thermomix has a built-in cooking function. Temperatures of 37-120°C are possible. With this function, rye malt scalds, pre-cooked additions and scalds can be produced quickly and safely.

4. Speed setting:

Speeds from 0.5-10 are adjustable. In addition, the Thermomix is equipped with a turbo speed – this is limited to 2 seconds and can be operated several times as required.

I hadn’t found any useful use for the specially created dough function in the main menu.

5. Milling:

The setting 9-10 can be used to chop grains, seeds, pulses and poppy seeds.

Test recipes

Wheat doughs in the Thermomix

What points should be considered when making wheat dough:

  • Use all pre-dough (poolish, pâte fermentèe, biga, pre-cooked, rye malt scald, …) from the refrigerator – due to the strong warming of the dough, all raw materials must be used as cold as possible.
  • Autolysis doughs help to lower the dough temperature! Mix the flour, water and pre-dough briefly and leave to soak for 30 minutes. The subsequent kneading phase is shortened many times over and ensures an optimal dough temperature.
  • However, autolysis has a small disadvantage – the dough knife can only be started with difficulty – it is therefore useful to lift the dough before kneading.
  • Use high quality flours – the flours used should be strong. The flours in this test were provided by BONGU.de.
  • Due to the strong warming of the dough, the bulk water for wheat dough must always be used from the refrigerator (1-3°C).
  • Do not use ice cubes – the short kneading time would prevent them from dissolving.
  • For doughs with a high TA (+180), I recommend retaining some water and only kneading it in quickly and briefly in the middle of the kneading time (the dough knife processes the added water in a few seconds).
  • The optimal dough size for wheat dough is 700-850g.
  • When kneading, do not leave the thermomixer out of your sight / kneading for 20-30 seconds is enough to knead over the dough.
  • Wheat dough should be kneaded in the opposite direction – this kneads the dough more evenly and faster.

Wurzelbrot   TA: 183 (with autolyse)

  • 450g Wheat sourdough TA 200
  • 520g T65
  • 350g Water 2-4°C

Mix the ingredients for 10 seconds on speed setting 10 and let stand to autolyse for 30 minutes.

  • 18g Salt
  •   2g Yeast

Add the salt and yeast and mix for 60 seconds on level 10.

  • 50g Water

Add the additional water (if possible don’t turn off the mixer) and mix for an additional 85 seconds on level 10.

Dough temperature after kneading: 27,6°C!!

Working up: After kneading, place the dough in an oiled tub and fold after 20 and 40 minutes and then store in the refrigerator. After 12 hours, separate off dough pieces, twist to form and allow to proof for 30 minutes. Bake at  250°C/ 15 minutes and then reduce the temperature to 235°C. The total baking time should not be less than 35 minutes. 

Ruch Bread  TA 176 (without autolyse)

  • 300g Mature poolish (TA 200) from the refrigerator!!
  • 350g Ruch flour
  • 230g Water 2-4°C
  •    12g Salt
  •   5g Yeast

Mix the ingredients for 150-180 seconds counter clockwise on level 10.

Dough temperature after kneading: 28,5°C

Working up: After kneading, place the dough in a tub and fold after 30/60 minutes. After a total maturity time of 90 minutes, shape as desired and then cold proof. After a proofing time of 8 hours at 4°C, slide the loaf into the oven with steam at 250°C and bake until well browned. Reduce the temperature to 235°C after 15 minutes.

Rye dough in the Thermomix

In order to successfully knead rye dough in the Thermomix, a few points must be observed:

  • The Thermomix delivered perfect results with a dough amount of 1000-1100g.
  • The filling of the ingredients into the bowl determines the kneading result! All liquid components must first be poured into the Thermomix, i.e. first sourdough, water, bread soaker, soaker and scalds and on top of that flour, salt, spices.
  • The water temperature for rye dough should be between 12 and 15 ° C (little dough warming!).
  • The speed of the knife must not exceed level 4 for the first 15 seconds! If the initial speed is too high, an air bubble will form in the knife area. The air bubble makes it difficult for the ingredients to mix – therefore start with level 4 and after 15 seconds increase to level 7-10.
  • The dough setting can be used for rye-heavy doughs – mixing time 5-6 minutes
  • The Thermomix has a function in which the direction of rotation can be changed while maintaining the same speed. This function is recommended for rye-heavy doughs, the rye or mixed rye breads contain little or no glue. By changing the direction of rotation, the rye dough turns on itself and proper dough formation is ensured.
  • The higher the proportion of wheat in the recipe, the longer the kneading time.

Mixed rye bread:

  • 200g Wheat flour Type 700
  • 200g Rye flour Type 960
  • 420g Mature rye sourdough TA 200
  • 250g Bread soaker (80g dried leftover bread + 170g water)
  • 100g Water 10-14°C
  •    14g Salt
  •     + Bread spice (optional)

Weigh the ingredients in order in the Thermomix and mix for 15 seconds at level 3.5. Then increase the speed to 10 and mix for another 75 seconds. During the 75 seconds, the direction of rotation must be changed every 15 seconds!

Dough temperature after kneading: 28,4°C

Working up: After kneading, place the dough in a bowl and allow to mature for 30 minutes. Then turn the dough out of the bowl and fold it together from all sides. With the seam-side down, place it in a floured proofing basket, cover, and allow to proof. Once ¾ proofed, bake the dough at  250°C for 10 minutes (without steam!). After 20 minutes, reduce the oven temperature to 200°C and bake until well browned.

Rye bread:

  • 300g Rye flour Type 960
  • 550g Mature sourdough TA 200
  • 150g Water  10-14°C
  •    12g Salt
  •   5g Yeast
  •     + Bread spice (optional)

Weigh the ingredients in order in the Thermomix and mix for 15 seconds at level 3.5. Then change the direction of rotation of the knife and at the same time increase the speed to 10 + mix for another 45 seconds. During the 45 seconds, the direction of rotation must be changed every 15 seconds!

Dough temperature after kneading 28°C

Working up: After kneading, store the dough in a bowl for 30 minutes. Then shape into a round loaf and place into a proofing basket with the seam-side down. Once ¾ proofed, bake at 250°C with steam. Reduce the oven temperature to 200°C after 10 minutes and bake until well browned.