19th December 2023

Homemade Bagels - smoked salmon optional

The perfect way to finish off any lingering smoked salmon

Use a food mixer or knead by hand if you fancy a work out to banish bingo wings that may have appeared over Xmas

Makes 12 bagels

400ml tepid water (you should be able to hold your finger in the water)
1 1/2 tsp. dried yeast (or 15g fresh yeast)
1 1/2 tbsp. dark brown sugar

Mix these 3 ingredients in the large bowl of your mixer whilst you measure out the rest of the ingredients. This allows the yeast to multiply before you mix it into the cold flour; in the colder temperatures of winter this will result in a bread with more rise.

600-750g strong white flour
2tsp. fine sea salt
1 egg, beaten
Sesame/poppy seeds to cover if wished

Tip 600g of flour into the water/yeast/sugar mix and add the salt.

In a Mixer: Use the dough hook on your mixer to knead for 5 minutes until the dough comes away cleanly from the bowl. you can add a tablespoon of flour at a time after 5 minutes if the mix seems too wet. Ideally it should be a stiff dough (otherwise it won't hold its shape in when you boil them).

Or by Hand: mix quickly to form a shaggy mess, then cover with a t-towel and leave for 10 minutes whilst you have a cuppa. When you come back the dough will be much easier to knead since the flour will have had time to absorb the water and you won't end up with it all sticking to your hands when you start kneading.

Leave the dough in the bowl , covered with a t-towel, to rest for 10 minutes then divide into 12 equal pieces. Make each piece into a sausage and and overlap and twist the ends together to make a firm ring. Then leave on 2 lined baking sheets, covered with a damp towel for 1 hour or until roughly doubled in size.

Preheat your oven to 200 deg C. Then bring a large pan of water to a rolling boil. Using tongs to drop 1 (or more if your pan is large enough) to drop the bagels in and after 20 seconds they should float to the surface. At which point pop them back onto the baking sheets and brush with beaten egg and scatter with seeds if liked. Bake for 10-15 minutes in the oven till golden brown. Eat immediately or pop some in the freezer to enjoy another day.

adapted from the cookbook 'Midnight Chicken': Ella Risbridger