Sunday, March 4, 2012

Simple Bagels

For this week's Short and Tweet challenge I had trouble deciding whether to go with the pita or the bagels from Dan Lepard's book Short and Sweet. I really like pita bread, buy it quite a lot and especially when I get it from Persepolis ,  I am not convinced I could make better myself but I was tempted to try.

Bagels, however, I only buy when the moon's dancing and have never even thought about trying to make myself before, so having promised myself that 2012 will be the year I venture into new territory bagels it was.

The first few steps of Dan Lepard's bagel recipe are familiar territory apart from the slightly less common addition of wine vinegar to the bread dough. I knew the dough texture should be firm so stuck with the amount of water stated despite wanting to add some more.

I think it was when it came to the shaping that I was a little concerned about how uneven things were looking but still felt I had done my best. I had scaled out each piece of dough so I knew they were the same weight even if the shapes were getting a little random.

The next stage was the quick poaching and I had read somewhere the longer the poach time the chewier the bagel so I wanted to stick to the timings given which I found a bit tricky even with just four bagels at a time in the pan.

So I did my best to keep the poaching to no more than one minute per side and to scoop each one out and onto a baking sheet without taking a pool of water with it.

I tried to sprinkle on the sesame seeds as soon as they came out of the pan so that they would stick better but this may not have made any difference to their ability to drop off rather too readily.

Once they were all poached it was into the oven for a twentyfive minute bake. Here they are just as they go in to the hot oven.

And here they are just as they come out of the oven:

I am no bagel expert so am not sure if I should have retained a bigger hole in the centre and if they should really be a bit flatter in shape.  The picture below shows the inside where you can see I have a few big air holes and I suspect a more open crumb than a traditional bagel. No complaints though as they were delicious and I was actually quite proud of them. They made a perfect Sunday brunch with soft cheese and smoked salmon and I will definitley be making them again.


  1. I'm so pleased that you made these bagels: it's a much more straightforward recipe than most others and less intimidating.

    Your crumb suits me - I find a lot of bagels too heavy for my taste (possibly heresy).

    Nice looking - it sounds a delightful breakfast.

    1. I think the reason I rarely buy bagels is that I too can find them heavy and dense. I really liked these which may mean they are not 'real' bagels but they were a lot of fun to make, and eat.

  2. Thank you for lending a photograph to #shortandtweet 18: Perfect Pita, Simple Bagels & Double-Corn Bacon Muffins.

    You've definitely encouraged me to try this recipe, with tweaks, to adjust the density and crumb to my preference.

  3. Thank you for permitting me to reproduce a photograph in #shortandtweet 18: Perfect Pita, Simple Bagels & Double-Corn Bacon Muffins.

    I've been gathering together more information about bagels and bialys along with making notes about how other people have topped them so feel inspired to try these again.