posted by Sparkie 12-09-100 8:49 PM
Converting Handmade Recipes to Machine Made Recipes
Converting a handmade recipe for use in a bread machine is fairly simple. Almost all handmade recipes make 2 loaves of bread. To convert the recipe simply cut the ingredients in half. So if the recipe called for 1/4 Cup of whatever, you would use 1/8 Cup, etc. The only thing that you don't cut in half is the yeast. I use between 2 and 2-1/2 tsp. of yeast per bread machine recipe. You might use less depending on where you live.
Resizing Bread Machine Recipes from One Size to Another
There are two options for converting a recipe from one size to another. Option one requires a calculator and a little bit of math work. The other requires Sierra Online's MasterCook or other recipe management software that allows recipe scaling based on the number of servings.
You have a 1-1/2 pound recipe and you want to convert it to a 2-pound recipe. Or, you have a 1-pound recipe and you want to convert it to a 1-1/2 pound recipe, etc. This conversion is easy also. With a little bit of math, you can convert recipes of any size to any other size. We are only going to cover 1, 1-1/2, 2 and 2-1/2 pound recipes and how to convert them back and fourth.
The chart below tells you what formula to use to convert a recipe from one size to another. First choose the size of the recipe you have in the FROM column. Then select the size you want to convert it to in the TO row. Use this formula to convert the recipe.
Once you have the recipe converted you may have odd decimal amounts. Use the chart below to convert these to the nearest amount. When hit with an odd amount you will need to round it up or down. This is done based on how close the decimal amount is to one measurement or the other. Example if the decimal amount is 2.33 then this would be 2-1/3. However, if it was 2.28 then it would be 2-1/4.
Decimal Conversion Chart
Now using the two charts above we are going to convert a 1-1/2 pound recipe to a 1-pound recipe. Here is the 1-1/2 pound recipe.
1 Cup Water
1 Tsp. Salt
2 Tbsp. Sugar
2 Tbsp. Butter
3-1/2 Cups Bread Flour
2 Tbsp. Dry Milk
2 Tsp. Yeast
To convert this recipe to a 1-pound recipe we start with the water. Using a calculator punch in 1 and then according to the chart we need to divide the amount by 3 and then multiply it by 2. This gives us .66 now according to the second chart .66 is closest to .625 or 2/3 Cup. Now we move on to the salt. Again we punch in 1 then divide by 3 and multiply by 2. This gives us .66 which would be 2/3 Tsp. Now finish converting this recipe and compare your results to mine. Here is the converted recipe.
2/3 Cup Water
2/3 Tsp. Salt
1-1/3 Tbsp. Sugar
1-1/3 Tbsp. Butter
2-1/3 Cups Bread Flour
1-1/3 Tbsp. Dry Milk
1-1/3 Tsp. Yeast
All recipes I have converted in this fashion have worked fine. I do recommend however, that when making a converted recipe for the first time that you stay close by to see if there is enough water and flour to make a nice dough ball. If it is too wet add 1 Tbsp. Flour at a time until it makes a nice ball. If it is too dry add 1 Tbsp. Water at a time until it makes a nice ball. Make sure to these additions on your recipe for future use.
If you are using a recipe management program that allows for recipe scaling based on servings. You can have the program scale your bread machine recipes up or down for you. For this to work you need to understand how many slices a certain size loaf of bread will make.
To have your recipe management software scale your recipe up or down, you need to enter in the appropriate servings when you enter in your recipes. For example, if you enter in a 1-1/2 pound recipe, you need to set the servings to 12. That is because you will get 12 slices of bread from a finished 1-1/2 pound recipe. Use the above chart to set the appropriate servings for your recipes.
This method has two advantages. First, when you want nutritional information, the information that you get is per slice of bread. This is much more useful than say the calorie content of the whole loaf of bread. I don't know too many people that eat a loaf at a time. Second, it makes it very easy to have the software do the math for you when you want to scale a recipe up or down.
Say for example you have a 12 serving 1-1/2 pound recipe and you just got a new 2-1/2 pound machine. Well, using the chart above you would tell your recipe management software to scale the recipe from 12 servings to 20 servings. You would then have a 2-1/2 pound recipe. Presto!
The only thing you do have to remember about converting recipes is that no matter how much yeast it says you need. No bread machine recipe needs more than 2-1/2 tsp. Much of the time it is less than that.
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