Thursday, March 29, 2012


I gave up all restaurant food for Lent. It actually hasn't been too bad. I've been learning to make a lot of my favorite take out food. The benefits of which are major cost savings and I am able to tailor the recipes to be lower in WW points and healthier all around. Now that I have a little more time to dedicate to cooking and baking, I've been getting back into the swing of making most of our food from scratch. I used to make all of our bread and pasta. At one point Vince told me that he prefers store bought white bread to homemade, because that is what he grew up with and knows. *sigh* Sometimes I wonder why I bother. Oh well, I don't eat a whole lot of bread so I pretty much stopped making it. I figured if Vince wanted any he would just go buy a loaf of something he likes.

I've been on a fruit an oatmeal for breakfast kick for quite some time now. I'm actually getting a little tired of it and was looking for something to change it up a little. When I saw this recipe for homemade bagels, I paused. I love bagels. Real bagels. Not the store bought ones, which are ok but not really real bagels. We didn't have time to stop and buy bagels while we were in NY and I had a little bit of a craving. I decided to dive in and try it.

I always thought that making bagels would be really complicated and difficult. It really wasn't that bad! There are a lot of steps involved and you will definitely make a mess of your kitchen but it is so, so, so worth it. I gave some to my neighbors to try and they raved. Vince brought some to work and refused to share. These really are excellent. I will say that they still don't really compare to real NY bagels but they are a good substitute. I found it a little difficult to get the pieces to be the size that I wanted and I wasn't really able to get them into a proper "doughnut-like" shape but they were close. I'll just have to keep making them until I perfect it. :)

Adapted from Good Thymes & Good Food

2 Cups Warm Water
4 1/2 teaspoons Active Dry Yeast
3 Tablespoons Sugar
1 Tablespoon Salt
5 3/4 Cups All Purpose Flour
4 Quarts Water
1 Tablespoon Sugar
Cornmeal, for dusting the pan
1 Large Egg, beaten with a little water
Desired toppings (I used poppy seeds, sesame seeds, onion powder, and dried minced onion)

  1. In the bowl of an electric mixer, stir together the yeast and warm water.
  2. Let stand for 5 minutes.
  3. Add the sugar and salt.
  4. Gradually mix in 4 cups of flour.
  5. Mix with the dough hook for about 5 minutes.
  6. Add in 1 1/4 cups more flour.
  7. Continue kneading until the dough is smooth and elastic, add more flour as needed to prevent the dough from being sticky.
  8. Place the dough in a greased bowl and cover with a clean towel.
  9. Let the dough rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
  10. Punch down the dough and divide it into three equal parts.
  11. Taking one part at a time, for the dough into a log and cut each log into equal size pieces (6 pieces would be the size of a store bought bagel).
  12. Knead each piece into a small ball and poke your thumbs through the center. With your thumbs in the center hole, work your fingers around the perimeter of the dough making a doughnut shape.
  13. Place the bagels on a floured surface and let rise for 20 minutes.
  14. Preheat oven to 400F.
  15. In a pot wide enough to fit 4-5 bagels, boil 4 quarts of water with a tablespoons of sugar.
  16. Adjust the heat to keep the water simmering.
  17. Lightly grease a baking sheet and liberally sprinkle with cornmeal.
  18. Carefully drop the bagels into the boiling water, 4 at a time.
  19. Boil for 30 seconds on each side of the bagel.
  20. Lift the bagels out of the water with a slotted spoon and blot on a paper towel.
  21. Place the bagels on the prepared baking sheet.
  22. Bruch each bagel with the egg wash.
  23. Sprinkle the tops of the bagels with any desired toppings.
  24. Bake for 20 minutes, until they are a rich brown.
  25. Cool on a wire rack.

Yields: 18 Bagels

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