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I have a 5.5qt KitchenAid stand mixer with the burnished spiral ("pigtail") dough hook. This is not the C-hook. When I make a small amount (for example, using 250g of flour or approximately 2 cups) of standard-hydration dough, instead of kneading, the dough will wrap itself around the dough hook and spin in the bowl. I'm using speed 2.

Pulling the dough off the hook and allowing it to relax for 5 minutes will make it knead again for a bit (but not long, a minute or two at most).

Oiling the dough hook helps some, but the oil of course comes off, then it sticks again.

I've adjusted the height per the manual, so that's set correctly.

Other than switching to the coated dough hook (which is currently being shipped to me) or making a larger batch, is there anything else to do to prevent the dough from sticking to the hook?

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4 Answers 4

I've had this issue when making small batch of pizza dough. I either make a double batch of dough, freezing the leftover dough, or I just let it ride, it took a bit longer but the dough was functional. The kneading action appears to continue even though the dough is making limited contact with the bowl. Your exact model of kitchen aid and bowl size may impact your results.

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I solve this problem by tipping and holding the machine on the side. If the dough still does not let go of the hook, I turn the speed up for a couple of seconds. When the dough is loose I let the hook work it for a minute or so while the machine is still tipped over. This often gets the dough in such a state that it does not wrap around the hook but gets kneaded as it should.

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Hmmm, this is a good idea, I'll have to give it a try. Will let you know if it works out. –  derobert Mar 19 '12 at 21:29
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I should add that it does not work in all cases. I wish I had a better suggestion, because this has been frustrating many times. I look forward to seeing future answers to your good question. –  Magne Mar 20 '12 at 16:52

Sounds like a fight with physics. Have you tried placing the hook in the freezer to try and prevent it from sticking? Please don't take this as patronising, but it may be better to just knead by hand?

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Interesting - why would freezing the hook help? Dough seems to stick to surfaces regardless of their temperature. –  rumtscho Mar 17 '12 at 13:22
    
Just a suggestion - thinking along the lines of pastry which is best handled in a cool atmosphere / cool surfaces to help prevent it from sticking. It's worth a try surely? –  Alex Holsgrove Mar 17 '12 at 13:49
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In pastry, it is the dough which has to be cold to stop sticking, the bowls etc. are kept cold so the dough itself doesn't warm. And the reason is in the high butter content. In a yeast dough, you don't want your dough to be cold, you'll send your yeast into slumber. Also, it won't help with sticking, because there is no butter-flour paste to keep hard through cooling. –  rumtscho Mar 17 '12 at 14:21

If the dough appears to be wet or sticky, you can add flour 1 tbsp at a time, waiting at least 30 seconds before adding another spoonful. You could also try increasing the speed quickly to fling the dough off of the hook and then reduce the speed to continue kneading.

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Its not wet or sticky—in fact, when its wetter, I don't have the problem. Speeding up the mixer doesn't really do much. –  derobert Feb 24 '12 at 3:19

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