Bagel Indulgence

Ever Since I’ve taken bread making classes, I’ve been churning out fresh bread daily for the family’s breakfast. The thing about homemade bread is you get to add anything and everything into what you’re making at a fraction of what you get outside. There is no preservative added to extend the bread’s shelf life, so the bread that will be going down the stomach instantly becomes the healthier choice.

The family, especially Dad and the brother, gets spoilt for choice every single day. Every night coming home straight from work, Dad will greet me with “So, what will you be making for breakfast tomorrow”? or to cut it short, “whats for breakfast tomorrow”? So last Friday, coming home from work, the usual scene ensues. Dad said “Hi, making bread tonight? So what’s for breakfast tomorrow”? What came next shocked him, as I’ve been baking bread daily, 7 days a week for the past 1 month. “I’m taking a break tonight”. Dad was a little disappointed, so I thought, why not make something simple. “I will be making bagels tomorrow so that I won’t have to toast them”. Dad got even more disappointed, as he didn’t have that affection for chewy breads. Haha. The brother however, is a sucker for these kinda western frills. So when he heard that we’ll be having bagels for breakfast tomorrow, his eyes went *ding ding*. Haha. So bagel it was. Haha.

Wanting the family to have a slightly healthier breakfast, I topped some of my bagels with whole meal, and some with sesame seeds.

 

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To make your bagels, these are the things you’d need and how to go about doing it.

Ingredients

430g bread flour
6g instant dry yeast
3 Tbsp sugar
1 Tbsp salt
360g water + 2 tbsp Honey

Water Bath

530g water
1 ½ Tbsp Honey {or substitute sugar in the same amount}

Glazing

1 egg white – beaten with 1 teaspoon water per white
Topping of choice, if any {coarse sea salt, poppy seeds, sesame seeds, dried onion, etc.}

Directions

  1. Make the Dough: In a mixing bowl {or the bowl of an electric mixer} measure 430g of the flour and stir in all the remaining dry ingredients. Pour in the water and honey, and mix with a dough hook till it all comes together and the dough is smooth. (See Picture 1)
  2. First Rising: When the dough is kneaded enough, round the dough and place it in an oiled mixing bowl, cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap, and set  aside at room temperature until it has doubled in volume – about 1 hour. (See Picture 2)
  3. Shape the Bagels: When the dough has doubled in volume, turn it out onto a lightly floured work surface and punch it down with extended fingers to remove excess gas (See Picture 3). Divide the dough into 10 equal pieces. Shape each piece into a ball. (See Picture 4). Flatten each one with the palm of your hand. With your thumb, press deep into the center of the bagel and tear the depression open with your fingers. Pull the hole open, pull it down over a finger and smooth the rough edges. It should look like a bagel! Form all of the bagels and place them on your work surface (See Picture 5).
  4. Second Rising: Cover the shaped bagels with wax paper or parchment paper. Leave them at room temperature just until the dough has risen slightly – about 20 minutes (this is called a “half proof”).
  5. Prepare Water Bath: Near the end of the dough’s rising time, bring the 530g of water to the boil in a large saucepan. Add the honey or substitute sugar and stir till dissolved.  Reduce the heat and leave the water just barely moving – at a slow simmer.
  6. Prepare Baking Sheet: Preheat the oven to 230 degrees. Grease a baking sheet with shortening (or use a non-stick baking sheet, or line a baking sheet with “Silpat” or similar material).
  7. Water-bathe the Bagels: Into the gently simmering water prepared earlier, slip one bagel at a time {use a large skimmer, and gently lower them into the water}. Simmer only 2 or 3 bagels at a time – do not crowd the pan. The bagels will sink and then rise again after a few seconds. Simmer gently for one minute, turning each bagel over once during that time. Lift each bagel out of the water with the skimmer, drain briefly on a towel, then place each bagel on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat until all bagels are simmered, drained and on the baking sheet.
  8. Bake the Bagels: Brush each bagel lightly with the egg-white-water mixture first, then sprinkle the topping if desired – or leave unadorned, for water bagels. Place the baking sheet on the middle rack of the preheated oven for 8 minutes. When the bagel tops are a light brown, turn them over to complete baking. This turning-over step will keep the bagels in a rounded shape, instead of their being flat on the bottom. When brown and shiny, remove the finished bagels from the oven. Place the bagels on a metal rack to cool.
  9. Filling the Bagel: Split the bagel in half, and fill the bagel with your choice fillings, and enjoy. (See picture 6)
    pictures

I filled all my bagels with creamed cream cheese and maple syrup.

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Some I left it plain with just the cream cheese mix only,

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and some, I topped it off with herbed smoked salmon together with the cream cheese mix.

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It was jolly good. Dad skipped the bread, as he wasn’t a fan of such treats. The brother, however, enjoyed it to the max. He had 4 for breakfast. Bagels are very easy to make, so do try it. 🙂

Till next time,

xoxo

Marian

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