Salmon and cream cheese on a bagel is probably my favourite thing to eat in the world. It’s therefore pretty important to me to have a bangin bagel recipe in the repertoire, and this recipe is it.
These bagels are pretty simple to make, don’t take too long, and always turn out beautifully. You can even add interesting toppings like seeds and herbs depending on what you want to serve them with.
The thing that sets bagels apart from other breads is their dense and chewy texture. If you haven’t baked bagels before then the following statement might surprise you but this wonderful texture is caused by boiling the shaped dough!
Here are some pictures of the process:
And finally, the most important step of all: Delivering the bagels to the family for speedy consumption!
Bagels can be quite expensive to buy at the store but are actually not a lot harder to make than any other bread. This means they are a great thing to make at home yourself. I highly recommend you give it a go! 🙂
So without further ado, here is the recipe:
Best Ever Bagel Recipe
- 7g of active dried yeast
- 350 ml of warm water
- 500g high grade flour
- 5g salt
- Toppings (optional)
Starting with approximately half of the water, add the yeast and leave to activate for 10 minutes. If after this stage you cannot see any signs of activity from the yeast then it’s probably dead* and you’ll need to head to the shops to buy some more.
After 10 minutes, combine the salt and flour in a large bowl and mix. Next create a well, pour the yeast mixture into this and then start mixing and adding water as needed until a stiff kneadable dough has formed. Knead this dough for around 10 minutes adding more flour as needed to avoid sticking to the bench. (Note that in many circumstances adding extra flour to a bread dough is not recommended. Drier doughs result in denser breads with less rise and this isn’t usually desirable. However, in this case a denser texture is actually an important bagel characteristic and so a stiff dough is fine.)
Once your kneading is complete, transfer the dough to a lightly greased bowl and cover with a damp tea towel. Leave the dough to rise until roughly doubled in size.
Divide the dough into 10 pieces by first weighing the full amount and then dividing the total dough mass by ten. Cut each piece to weigh this 1/10th amount and roll these pieces into 10 individual balls. Cover all the pieces with a tea towel and then one at a time create the signature hole in each bagel by pushing your thumb through the centre of the ball. Swirl your thumb around or use your hands to evenly increase the size of the hole and then place back under the tea towel. Repeat this with all ten balls.
Leave the shaped bagels to prove for 10-20 minutes and then preheat your oven to 220 degrees C. Bring a large pot of water to the boil. Once the water is boiling reduce the heat and start placing the bagels into the water. Boil the bagels 3 or 4 at a time for a minute on each side. Use a slotted spoon to turn them over in the water as well as to remove them after a total of two minutes each. If you have decided to top your bagels with anything, add these toppings as you remove the bagels from the water.
Place all of the bagels onto baking paper lined baking trays and bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown in colour.
I also just wanted to add that I personally think that though very freshly baked bagels are fine as is, after a few hours they really taste so much more delicious if they’re toasted. You do you though, and if you do try this recipe let me know what you think! I’d love to hear from ya.
From Larissa 🙂
* Yes, yeast is a living thing and it needs to be alive to do it’s job for your bread! I’m actually thinking of posting a “science of bread making” post in the near future which will discuss things like yeast in further detail so stay tuned if you’re interested. It really is an incredibly cool topic!