There is something wonderful about mastering a skill and getting repeatable results. I’ve been on a bagel quest for the last couple of months, turning out batch after batch in search of the perfect multi-grain boiled bagel texture.
I did a lot of reading, experimented with a couple recipes, and ended up with a heavily modified version of this Easy New York-Style Bagel recipe from the Oregonian. Here’s my take.
1 1/4 cups warm water, divided into 1/2 cup and 3/4 cup
(you may need up to 1/4 cup more)
1 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
2 cups bread flour
1 1/2 cups whole grain flour; I’ve tried spelt, and now kamut
Extra bread flour for kneading
2 1/4 teaspoons salt
Optional toppings: coarse salt, poppy seeds, or sesame seeds
In an 8 ounce measuring cup, add 1/2 cup warm water. Pour in the sugar and yeast, stir to combine. Let it sit for 5 minutes to get the yeast going.
In a large bowl, mix the flours and salt. Make a well in the middle and pour in the yeast-sugar mixture. Add an additional 3/4 cup warm water into the well. Mix and stir in the rest of the water as needed to form a moist, firm dough. You may need to add more water to get this texture.
On a well-floured countertop, knead the dough for 5 minutes, working in additional flour as needed. Your finished dough should be firm and stiff. (Other recipes have you knead for 10 minutes, but this is too much time for whole grain flours.)
Brush a large bowl with olive oil. Add dough and turn it so that it is coated with the oil. Cover the bowl with a damp kitchen towel and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour. A perfect warm place is your microwave! Before putting the bowl of dough in, heat a large mug of water for 3 minutes. Move the mug to the back corner, add your covered bowl. When the dough has doubled in size (about an hour), punch the dough down and let it rest, covered with the towel, for another 10 minutes.
Divide the dough into 9 equal pieces. Form your bagels by gently rolling each piece into a ball, flatten a bit and poke your thumb through the middle and make a good sized hole. (The hole will shrink.) Place bagels on a lightly oiled baking sheet, or an unoiled Silpat. Cover the bagels with the damp towel and let them rest for 10 minutes.
While the bagels are resting, bring a large pot of water to a boil and preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Reduce the heat to a low boil. Working in batches of 4 or 5 bagels, use a slotted spoon to lower the bagels into the water. Simmer for 2 minutes, flip, simmer for 2 more minutes. Remove the bagels to a wire rack to drain.
Add toppings while bagels are damp, just out of the pot, if desired.
Return drained bagels to baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes, until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack.
Yield: 9 lovely bagels
It’s been a food heavy weekend. Carole and I put on a tea for a lovely group of graduates.
Besides scones, we had savories
The moms served the scone and savory courses, and then we had them sit so we could serve the sweet course, and serve the moms the whole tea menu plus mimosas.
Here’s to moms, grads, friends.
The knitting continues, too!
Biscuit and I are testing out ideas for this lovely yarn from Bumblebirch. I think I know what it’s going to be. Biscuit is still dreaming.
And I’m narrowing down my blue/yellow choices, too. Hazel Knits Splish Splash with Midas? Or Hoppy Blond?