Happy MLK Day! I saw someone online the other day who thought “MLK” was an abbreviation for milk. I felt sorry for that individual’s parents. Anyway, yesterday, following a trip to the grocery store was almost a lazy day. I read a solid 200 or so pages of this book my mom loaned to me “A Discovery of Witches”. I must say, after the first two or three chapters I was hesitant to finish so I checked up on the Amazon reviews (another by-product of my marriage, I now check EVERYTHING on Amazon to see what other people have to say) and it had an overwhelming amount of positive reviews. I’m sad that I’m into the last quarter of it- but it’s part one in a three part series! Anyway, overall it is exactly the kind of book I was in need of. It’s long, coming in at over 500 pages. so it’s something that I can (and have) easily get lost in.
On to the food!
Gabe and I are always searching for new places to find ideas for dinner, and while on YouTube the other day we stumbled upon “Chef John”, he works for allrecipies.com. Of course, we then watched an hours worth of videos- including one on bagels. He has his own blog, found here. Yesterday, Gabe decided that he wanted to make these bagels. They, like most breads containing yeast, are a bit time consuming- but definitely worth it!
To begin, you make a sponge. I have posted other recipes that use a sponge and it’s a great way to get the yeast moving. To make the sponge place half a pound bread flour in the bowl of your mixer, along with 1.5 teaspoons of dry active yeast, a cup and a quarter of warm (about 110 degrees) water and at least a tablespoon of salt. Mix this until just combined (but make sure there is no dry flour left in your bowl), then cover and let rise for about half an hour. Ours took about 40 mins.
After the sponge rises and gets all bubbly, add the remaining flour and knead in a mixer for about 10 minutes. (You can also do this by hand if you don’t have a mixer) I say “about” because you really just knead it until its smooth, but still slightly sticky. Once you reach this stage, knead on the countertop (dusted with flour- hands too!) for another minute or so, and form into a ball. Place the ball back into the bowl, cover and let rise in a warm oven until it has doubled in size. Ours took about an hour or so (but we cut the recipe in half, so it may take longer if you use the whole recipe).
Once risen cut (or weigh) uniform size pices, and form them into 8 balls. Once you have 8 little dough balls, press out from the middle to form the bagel shape. I had to poke the hole with my thumb and continue to shape with my hands. These need to rise again, covered, for half an hour. The end of the rising! (I realize now that I should have taken more than one picture.)
Ok, so now you have 8 puffy bagels. Take out your widest, shallow pan (we used our saute pan) and fill it with about an inch or so of water, add a pinch of salt and a drizzle of honey. Bring to a boil. Once boiling, add bagels (only do 2-3 at a time) to the water and allow to cook about 2 mins. per side. Let drain on a cooling rack. Once all 8 have cooked in the water, brush with an egg wash and top with your desired topping. We used sea salt and honey. Bake for 25-30 mins. at 400 degrees.
Ta-daa!! Bagels! Gabe did most of the work here, so he really should get the credit. And they are delicious. I’m thinking breakfast, with some of my homemade peach jam and a cup of tea!