Bagels

Do you know bagels originated from the Jewish communities of Poland? These are traditionally shaped by hand into the form of a ring from yeasted wheat dough, first boiled for a short time in water and then baked. A world wide breakfast classic nowadays!

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups of all purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 tablespoon of dry yeast
  • 1 1/3 cups of warm water
  • 2 tablespoons of baking soda

In a large bowl combine sugar, yeast and water, mix well and let rest for 5 minutes. The yeast will start activating and form a foam-like coat over the water, wait until the foam rises about 1 cm.

In a bowl, or a food processor with knead blade, mix flour and salt.

Once the yeast is fully activated mix it with the dry ingredients, add 1/3 cup at a time and mix well until flour reaches a ‘shaggy dough’ consistency. When mixing in a food processor use low speed for approximately 4 minutes (use a silicone scraper to remove any flour stuck on the sides) dough should start integrating and forming a ball, keep mixing, your processor bowl should look almost clean of flour.

In a clean working table or countertop sprinkle a bit of flour and gently knead your dough for about 5 minutes: extend it, fold it and roll it. Once your dough is smooth, soft and malleable form a ball and place it on a greased bowl. Cover it with a cloth, then put over a plastic bag and close it tightly. Place it in a warm spot of the house.

Leave the dough rest and ferment for 1 to 2 hrs. depending on room temperature until it triples its size. Add more flour on countertop, press dough to remove air and flat it with your hands forming a rectangle. Divide in 8 equal parts.

Take one portion of dough, flatten it with your fingertips then start folding into the center, flatten it again and repeat folding. Turn facing the folded part to the countertop and while gently holding the ball with your hand forming a claw start making circular movements, this will help the folded part to expand and unfold. 

Using your thumb and your middle finger press the ball on the center until your fingers touch, then use your index fingers to start widening the hole with gentle circular moves. Repeat process with the other portions of dough.

Put some water to boil, when it starts boiling add the baking soda if you are making salt flavour bagels, or 2 teaspoons of honey / maple syrup if you are doing sweet bagels. Using a strainer slowly submerge the bagel in the boiling water, cook it for 30 seconds then turn it and cook it for other 30 seconds.

Once boiled place them in a greased pan or over a silicone sheet.

Topings:

Place the topping on a plate and press the bagel on top of it, or spinkle it until fully coated. Toppings will stick easily because the bagels still will be wet from the boiling. Also you can add egg wash the bagels to give them a crisp, shiny coating when cooked.

  • Everything Bagels: poppy seeds, sesame seeds, dried minced onion, dried garlic flakes, and coarse salt.
  • Sesame Seeds
  • Poppy Seeds
  • Coarse Salt
  • Grated Cheese (Mozzarella, Cheddar, etc)
  • Cinnamon & Sugar ( mix1 tablespoon of cinnamon / 2 tablespoons of brown sugar)

Preheat the oven at 400 F, cook for 25 to 30 minutes until the bagels are brown and crispy.

To give your bread a nice brown colour spray them on top with cooking oil or brush melted butter. This should be done in the last 5 minutes of cooking and not only will help the bread acquire a nice brown color but also make the crust crispier.

Once fully cooked, remove from the oven and let them cool down on a rack or a cutting board for 15 to 20 minutes.

When cold you can put them on a ziploc bag and freeze them, they will last for a few weeks and you only need to put them on the toaster to warm them.

Easy and delicious, enjoy!

Author: F. Guerra

Foodie, amateur cook/baker & a spicy food lover with a sweet tooth.

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