Food Processor Tips
Mixing dough with a high-powered food processor is efficient, quick and easy, but requires practice and some precautions.
Refer to your processor's manual to check its bowl size and motor capacity. If the flour amount in a recipe is beyond your machine's capacity, mix in small batches, then combine doughs to rise and shape.
Hydrate yeast in 1/4 cup warm (110°-115ºF) water in a small bowl or 2-cup liquid measure. Adding a small amount of sugar starts the fermentation process and proves the yeast is active.
Place dry ingredients in bowl; pulse to combine.
Add cold liquids to yeast mixture. A high powered food processor heats ingredients as it vigorously blends. Using cold liquids moderates the temperature of the dough to within the ideal 77°-80ºF range.
Pour combined cold liquid ingredients slowly through the feed tube with the machine running. Keep a steady stream but only as fast as flour will absorb it.
Think seconds, not minutes to make a soft, elastic dough. In a mere 40 seconds or less dough is formed in a food processor. If allowed to mix longer, dough looses its elasticity and becomes wet and sticky, even with the addition of more flour. Over-kneaded dough cannot be rescued. The only alternative is to start over and watch processing time more closely.
Check dough consistency and make adjustments if necessary. If dough is stiff and somewhat dry, add 1 teaspoon water; if soft and sticky, add 1 tablespoon flour. Close lid and process for 10 seconds. Check dough consistency again; make additional adjustments if necessary.
Add nuts, fruits and seeds at the very last few seconds of mixing, to distribute them throughout the dough. Over-processed, they become unrecognizable.