Those Glorious, dense, wonderfully tasting beauties. Glistening golden brown and caked with cheddar cheese and slathered in Cream Cheese… Can you tell I like Bagels?
My mom Has been telling me for over a year that I’ve been wasting money on bagels. I should have listened!
I love Baking with yeast, but for some reason Bagels have always intimidated me like crazy… something about the “poaching” process has always made me apprehensive. But since I’ve committed to trying to make as much as humanly possible rather then buying, I thought I should give it a try. (Especially since those little “mini” bagels I love are freakin’ expensive!)
The recipe I used comes from a Good ole’ Jean Pointer Company’s coming Cookbook.
1/4 oz Yeast (just shy of a Tablespoon)
1 tsp Granulated sugar
3/4 C Water (around 100-110 degrees F)
Let sponge together in a bowl (no need to stir). When yeast is bubbly and top looks like a sponge add next ingredients. (about 5-10 min)
2 Large eggs
2 Tbls Cooking oil
2 C Flour
1 Tbls Granulated sugar
1 3/4 tsp Salt
Add to yeast mixture, Should be quite glopy looking.
Slowly add in an extra (up to) 1 1/2 C flour.
This will vary quite a bit depending on elevation and humidity. I only needed to add about another 3/4C flour.
Dough should feel sooth and elastic, not hard. If it starts getting too firm you’ve added to much flour and you can add a tiny bit of water to work in.
You can do the entire thing in a mixer, or by hand.
I usually mix in the first amount of flour and other ingredients in the mixer and then work the second amount of flour by hand on the counter, so I can control the dough better.
Take your dough and let it rise for 1- 1 1/2 Hrs till it has doubled in size.
Place your dough in a bowl and place a towel over it. Put it in a place that isn’t drafty to rise.
My favorite place to let bread rise is in this funny little cupboard in my kitched, I call my bread cupboard. Our heat duct runs right under it and it stays a wonderful temperature for raising bread.
If you don’t have a weird cupboard like me, Turn your oven to 350 for about 20 seconds then shut it off and put your bowl inside.
4 quarts water (16 C)
2 Tbls sugar
So 4C water to 1/2 Tbls sugar… you can use this ratio for whatever size pot you have. I ended up with 12C water and 1 1/2 Tbls Sugar for the pot I used.
Once your bagel dough has risen take it out of the bowl and kneed it a couple times.
Divide dough in to as few as 12 equal parts. (I made my bagels slightly smaller and did 16 parts, or you could make mini bagels and divide it down even more.)
I was a little put off when I started rolling them out because they looked so small! Don’t be fooled. They poof up A LOT in the water. So make sure to make them skinny enough if you want to have a hole in the middle when you are finished with them.
On a lightly floured surface (so the dough doesn’t stick to the counter)
Roll out your pieces in to about a 6-10″ rope (depending on if you are making minis or full sized bagels) Pinch ends together to make a circle and place on a cookie sheet to rest for 15min.
Make sure to REALLY really squeeze those ends together. My first few ended up coming apart in the liquid because I didn’t squeeze the ends together good enough.
Bring poaching liquid to a full boil over high heat, and then back it off to a steady boil over med heat for poaching.
Put bagles in a few at a time (don’t put too many in or they will stick together), poaching for 1 min on each side.
Remove from the water and place on cookie sheet.
Take 1 egg and beat in bowl. Brush on the egg on the top of the bagels before baking (this gives them their nice shiny golden brown look when they are baked)
At this point you can add whatever you want to the top.
I added Cheddar cheese** (grated) to the top of some of them, you can add poppyseeds, sesame seeds, or whatever your favorite bagel topping is.
**If you add grated cheese you will have to bake for 3-4 min longer as the grease in the cheese keeps them from crisping up as quickly**
Bake in 400 Degree oven for 20-25 min. This time frame is a guide. Some ovens are over hot, some under, start with 15-18min and see how they are looking then add extra time accordingly.
Bagels should be golden brown when ready to come out.
Place bagels on cooling racks (if you have them) as soon as they come out of the oven. This keeps the bottoms from becoming soft from the condensation their heat will create on the counter top.
They aren’t the most beautiful Bagels I’ve ever eaten, but they certainly are the best.
This recipe makes amazing tasting bagels, that aren’t quite as dense as store bought ones.
Lesson learned. Listen to my mom. Don’t be afraid of poaching!