I Made Bagels!

This was my first attempt at bagels and I was surprised and pleased with how easy it was and how well they came out.

A few weeks ago, I couldn’t sleep and ended up watching a few episodes of Diners, Drive-ins and Dives. I hadn’t seen it before, but was curious as one of our local restaurants was featured in an episode. Since I wasn’t impressed with their food, I wasn’t inclined to watch the show until a bout of insomnia.

But in these weird and wild days, some comfort food late at night seemed like the right recipe. Anyway, in one of the episodes, Guy Fieri helped someone make bagels. It looked so simple, I thought, “huh, I should try that.”  Then promptly forgot about it.

A week later, I received an email from a friend with this recipe attached:

Sophisticated Gourmet: New York-Style Bagels

I decided it was a sign. It was time to attempt bagels.

I followed the recipe completely – except in these crazy days, I had to make do with regular unbleached flour. I usually have bread flour on hand, but shelves were bare last shopping trip. And I’ve found that instant yeast works better at this altitude.  Other than that,  no other substitutions. I can highly recommend the recipe.

The recipe is really just a simple bread dough. Although, once it’s all put together, it does have a different texture than most doughs I’ve made. It’s important to knead it for 10 minutes. I only made a half-batch and I found my mixer couldn’t quite knead that small amount. At the five-minute mark, I pulled it out and kneaded it by hand for the next 5 minutes on a floured surface.

I followed the recipe’s instructions for forming the bagels: rolling into a ball and using my thumb to form a hole, slowly enlarging it. I assumed as a novice (and not all that good at shaping, see: Blueberry pie crust and buns) rolling long tubes and turning them into circles would result in mockable shapes.

I topped them with Pink Himalayan salt and sesame seeds.

About the only difference between making a roll and making bagels is the boiling. I went with 2 minutes on each side, for a really nice chewy crust.  As a former East Coaster, I know bagels and pretzels are all about the chew.

Nom, nom, topped with French Butter. I will make these again.