Is there such a thing as healthy bread? Yes there really is and you can make it yourself. I am terrible at making bread by hand. I have tried before but found it difficult, somewhat time consuming and quite frankly a let down. The main issue is, I love nothing more than fresh bread! As you may or may not be aware I’ve always promoted eating bread as part of a healthy diet, as lots of people for some reason think it should be cut out when they want to lose weight or train. They are wrong. Bread has so many plus points, and if you make it yourself you know exactly what is going into it. Big bonus – right?

I was gifted a bread maker by Panasonic at*. My husband automatically said to me I wouldn’t use it, or that it would end up in the honeymoon period of many of my other gadgets, then meet it’s dust worthy doom onto of the kitchen cupboard. Whilst I love buying seeded patch of bread,  I love freshly baked bread, so I was going to prove it to my husband that this was worth while.

As may be aware a bread maker does take up quite a large amount of space, but if you can make it fit, it can live inside a cupboard instead of on the work surface. It didn’t particularly bother me living on the counter top, but it now lives in my cupboard and emerges every Sunday for the weekly loaf to be made. So, here was my new Panasonic bread maker, and after flicking through the instructions I felt confident about making my first white loaf. It was so simple to use as well. All I had to add into the stainless steel container, was flour, a teaspoon of salt, teaspoon of sugar (if you wanted), water, 7g of yeast and a tablespoon of margarine. Don’t be put off by there being salt and sugar in the loaf, because remember you’re in control of the amount. You can reduce the amount of salt and sugar in your bread – thus making it nice and healthy!

After the first loaf came out looking, tasting and smelling like a dream, (trust me the smell wafting through the house is amazing) I wanted to have a bit more fun. Obviously I branched into a wholemeal variety, then decided to branch out into making seeded batches. I added pine nuts, pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds to a batch I planned to have with some homemade soup. You can make your bread by hand, but for me personally I just don’t have the time or patience, so this works an absolute dream.

My favourite bread combinations made from the bread maker so far have been sultana and walnut, cheese, pumpkin seed, and olive bread. All collaborate perfectly with my various homemade soup concoctions.

This bread maker actually does more than just bread, it can get your dough all ready for you to make things like croissants or brioche buns. Like the bread loaves, you can keep things healthier by reducing the sugar, fat and salt, not to mention trying new recipe combinations. So don’t be afraid of eating bread, because getting something like a bread maker can make not only provide a healthy option you can have a bit of fun with.

Have you tried a bread maker before? If so what are you favourite combinations?