My children grew up eating home baked bread. We used a recipe from my grandmother and made 4, 1 1/2 loaves at a time. I continue to use that recipe, but bake only for two people now and have trouble finding the time to bake even for two.
I had eaten bread from a breadmaker about 13 years ago. It was OK, but the loaf was too small and I do not know what recipe was used. So, when I began to investigate bread making machines, I was only interested in a machine that would make a 2 pound loaf that would resemble the loaf shape and size I made.
I found the Zojirushi machine online and read many reviews before I ordered one. I thought that the price was sort of high, but the machine is made well and produces a very nice loaf. I have made Basic White Bread and Cinnamon Bread using the recipes included with the machine. I have made several loaves with my own recipes and have adapted my grandmother's recipe.I have used King Arthur's Flours (both regular unbleached,their white whole wheat and semolina) and their dry milk for baking.
The loaves are large and the texture is very nice. I cannot believe that a machine can knead a loaf with two little mixing arms and produce such nice texture. Cinnamon Raisin Bread is one of our favorites, but for regular white bread we prefer my grandmother's recipe. I sometimes find myself watching the machine knead the bread since I still find it unbelievable that a machine can produce a nice loaf.
My only issue with the machine is that it seemingly cannot produce a properly browned crust on the top of the loaf.