I was first introduced to bagels by my husband. As he likes everything cheese, bagels fitted his taste bud perfectly, as it is often times accompanied by cream cheese.
But me? It's not really my "type". However, I did eat a lot when I was travelling in Japan. It's because their packaging are really nice, and they comes in all sorts of flavor. How can you resist them when they look so delicious?
|From L-R: green tea, blueberry, cinnamon raisin and maple walnut flavor|
It is easy to make bagels at home. Definitely faster than 湯種 or 中種法. After proofing, the shaped dough is boiled in water before baking. The result is a dense and chewy interior with a browned exterior.
Recipe: (from The Sophisticated Gourmet) - makes 8 bagels
(I halved the recipe to make 4)
2 tsp active dry yeast (I use instant dry yeast)
500g bread flour
- Mix all the ingredients together till a soft dough forms.
- Knead for 15 mins on a floured table top. The dough will become firmer as you knead.
- Put into a big bowl which has been lightly greased. Let it proof for 1 hr or till doubled in volume.
- Punch the dough down, and divide into 8 portions. Shape into round shape and let it rest for 10 mins.
- Coat your finger in flour and gently press your finger into the centre to stretch the dough to form a ring. Place on a lightly greased baking tray. Cover with clingwrap and let it proof for 10 mins.
- Pre-heat the oven at 220C.
- Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Reduce the heat. Use a slotted spoon to lower the bagel into the water. Let them sit for 1 min, and then flip them over to boil for another 1 min. If you prefer a chewier bagel, extend the boiling time to 2 mins each side.
- Place the boiled bagel back on the lightly greased baking tray. Bake for 20 mins, until golden brown.
- Cool on a wire rack.
|see the holes inside - indeed chewy!|
I made it at night, and had it for breakfast the next day. It's superb with cream cheese!
Strangely, when I had it on the 2nd morning, it seemed to have lost its chewiness.
Overall, find that home-made ones are not as hard as those sold outside - which is just nice for me =)