Sunday, September 28, 2014

Bagels: First Take

2 teaspoons of active dry yeast
1 ½ tablespoons of granulated sugar
1 cup of warm water, about 110ºF (plus an optional ¼ more)
3 cups of unbleached flour (may need an additional ½ cup)
2 tablespoons vital wheat gluten
1 ½ teaspoons of salt

In ½ cup of the warm water, pour in the sugar and yeast. Do not stir. Let it sit for five minutes, and then stir the yeast and sugar mixture, until it all dissolves in the water.

Mix the flour, wheat gluten, and salt in a large bowl. Make a well in the middle and pour in the yeast and sugar mixture.

Pour half of the remaining warm water into the well. Mix and stir in the rest of the water as needed. Depending on where you live, you may need to add anywhere from a couple tablespoons to about ¼ cup of water. You want to result in a moist and firm dough after you have mixed it.

On a floured countertop, knead the dough for about 10 minutes until it is smooth and elastic. Try working in as much flour as possible to form a firm and stiff dough.

Lightly brush a large bowl with oil and turn the dough to coat. Cover the bowl with a damp dish towel. Let rise in a warm place for 1 hour, until the dough has doubled in size. Punch the dough down, and let it rest for another 10 minutes.

Carefully divide the dough into 8 pieces. Shape each piece into a round. Now, take a dough ball, and press it gently against the countertop, moving your hand and the ball in a circular motion pulling the dough into itself while reducing the pressure on top of the dough slightly until a perfect dough ball forms. Repeat, making 7 other dough rounds.

Coat a finger in flour, and gently press your finger into the center of each dough ball to form a ring. Stretch the ring to about ⅓ the diameter of the bagel and place on a lightly oiled cookie sheet. Repeat the same step with the remaining dough.

Cover the 8 dough rings with a damp kitchen towel and allow to rest, covered with damp towel, for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat your oven to 425ºF.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Reduce the heat. Use a slotted spoon or skimmer to lower the bagels into the water. Let them sit there for 1 minute, and them flip them over to boil for another minute. Extending the boiling times will produce a chewier bagel. If you want to top your bagels with stuff, do so as you take them out of the water.

Transfer the boiled bagels to a lightly oiled baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes, until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack.

Adapted From

makes 8 bagels
194 calories  |  0g fat  |  42g carbs  |  7g protien

To make 32 bagels
8 teaspoons of active dry yeast
6 tablespoons of granulated sugar
4 cup of warm water, about 110ºF (plus an optional ¼ more)
8 cups of unbleached flour (may need an additional ½ cup)
4 cups of whole wheat flour
8 tablespoons vital wheat gluten
6 teaspoons of salt