*Don’t worry about it. Still worrying? Taste the mixture. Go on. I’m not trying to hurt you. Tastes sweet and tangy, right, but not sour? Great. All good. Proceed.
**The five minutes or “proofing yeast” is essentially to make sure your yeast isn’t dead. If you took good care of it (kept it in the fridge if open, didn’t use past the expiration date, and didn’t kill it with liquid over 110 degrees), it’s most likely just fine, and once it’s dissovled, there’s no need to wait.
However, why not? The sugars in the beer, the milk, and the, ahem, sugar in the mixture you just added feeds the beasts and gives them a head start on leavening. So go ahead and let it hang out for a couple of minutes to build up its confidence. I let it sit as long as it takes to get together my other ingredients, and then five minutes or no, I move forward.
***a few things
1. I agree that kneading by hand is preferable, but if hand-kneading means the difference between making my own bread and not, I’m not going to fret about having the KitchenAid knead it.
2. If the dough hook really didn’t knead at all, Hobart would be out of business, and no large bakeries would exist. What, you think they have an army of little elves hand-kneading everything?
3. My dough from the KitchenAid windowpanes just fine. So it may not be conventionally “kneading”, but it gets to the same place eventually.
4. I do prefer to hand knead, but *shrug*, you know, I also prefer to buy organic. Can’t do that all the time either.
If you do use the machine to “knead”, the dough climbing up the hook is a good indicator that it is done, but the only real indicator of whether your dough is properly kneaded is windowpaning. You should be able to stretch the dough thin enough to see light through it. Like this lady did.
That’s not my dough, but that’s a fine windowpane. A fine windowpane. Dough is like bubble gum. Has to be stretchy enough to catch the bubbles.
****If you’re uncomfortable with this level of salt, then you can bring it down. Everyone has a different salt sensitivity based on how much you consume. But if you’re salt-shy, I entreat you to try this experiment, a dress rehearsal for your burgers: take tiny “tester” patties, don’t salt one at all, salt one sparsely, and then salt one liberally. Cook ’em up. Now try all three. Last one shouldn’t taste salty but meaty. Should taste the “meatiest” of all three.
More on salt here.