This weekend, it was finally time. Bagel time. I've been saying, "I'm going to make bagels this weekend!" for like...four weekends in a row now. 

Produce On Parade - Homemade Bagels and What I LearnedBut, the bagels will have to wait just a minute while I share this common sense quote. Today, I stumbled across this and I thought it was just so simple, honest, and matter-of-fact that I had to share. 

Produce On Parade - Homemade Bagels and What I Learned

Duhhhhhhhhh. If you love animals, don't eat them! Would you eat your beloved dog or cat? I hope not. This quote in its plainest offering makes sense, right? Yes. That's about all there is to it. So, thank you Morrissey!

And now, back to bagels. This was my first time making bagels and boy did I learn a thing or two (the hard way). Read this post and you won't make the same mistakes I did. Here's what I learned:

  • Knead the dough until it's smooth and shiny. 
  • Shaping the dough correctly is terribly important.
  • Bagel dough doesn't really rise. 
  • Remove the bagels from the boiling water with a mesh strainer...not two slotted spoons. 

Chewy, dense, and slightly sweet, these bagels are what's up. If you're new to making bagels don't miss out! 

Produce On Parade - Homemade Bagels and What I LearnedHomemade Bagels 

Makes 8 Bagels

Notes: If you can't find barley malt powder, barley malt syrup can be used as well. I really can't recommend making the bagels without either. It's what gives bagels that "bageliness". I found my powder at a local health food store, but it can be found online as well. Or, if you're feeling like a rebellious I suppose one could use agave nectar, but seriously just but some barley malt powder or syrup. It's definitely worth it. 

  • 4 cups bread flour (or other high-gluten flour)
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 Tbsp. barley malt powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp. dry active yeast
  • 1 1/4 cup lukewarm water
  • 1 Tbsp. additional barley malt powder
  • toppings (we did cinnamon sugar as well as salt bagels)

In a large electric mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, and 1 Tbsp. barley malt powder. 

Produce On Parade - Homemade Bagels and What I LearnedProduce On Parade - Homemade Bagels and What I LearnedAttach the dough hook and using the lowest speed possible (stir), add in the yeast and the water. Mix for about 4 minutes. Increase the speed to the next level (2), and mix for about 10 minutes. 

Produce On Parade - Homemade Bagels and What I LearnedTurn the dough on a lightly floured surface. The dough will be a bit sticky. Knead until the dough shapes a smooth and shiny ball. 

Divide into 8 equal balls (each about 4 oz.), and place on a baking sheet. Cover with saran wrap and a towel. Allow to rest for 5 minutes.

Next, roll one of the balls into a log, about the length of your hand. Connect the two ends. The bagel ring should be even in size. Here's the important part; bagel dough doesn't really rise, so be sure to shape the dough to how you want your bagel to look when it's cooked. For example, make sure there isn't a big gaping hole in the middle like mine! The shape of the dough should look like, well, a bagel pretty much. Repeat with the remaining dough balls and place on a baking sheet coated lightly with flour, cover with saran-wrap and place in the fridge for 12-18 hours. 

Produce On Parade - Homemade Bagels and What I Learned

Remove the bagel dough from the fridge. Preheat oven to 450 F, and if you have a pizza/baking stone, make sure it's in the oven to preheat as well. If you don't have one that's okay too. Bring a large soup pot of water (about 3 inches) to a roiling boil with 1 Tbsp. of the barley malt powder. Fill a large bowl with cold water. 

Prepare a wire cooling rack for the bagels to be placed on when they are done boiling. Prep any toppings you'd like in a few shallow bowls as well. One at a time, place the dough rings in the bowl of cold water. If they float, they're ready to boil. If not, check again in five minutes.

Produce On Parade - Homemade Bagels and What I LearnedProduce On Parade - Homemade Bagels and What I LearnedWhen the oven is to temperature, the water is boiling, and you have at least 4 ready to boil rings, go ahead and place four in the boiling water. Be sure to keep them submerged with a slotted spoon (as they should float), and boil for 30-60 seconds, or until they are slighted puffed. Remove with a mesh strainer...I don't recommend using two slotted spoons like I did! 

Produce On Parade - Homemade Bagels and What I Learned

Place the boiled bagels on a wire cooling rack and repeat with the other half of the batch. When they've all been boiled and have cooled slightly, coat the top in whatever toppings you'd like.

Produce On Parade - Homemade Bagels and What I LearnedThen, place all the bagels on the pre-heated pizza stone or on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake at 450 F for 15 minutes.

Produce On Parade - Homemade Bagels and What I LearnedRemove from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool. Serve warm, and store in an airtight container. 

Produce On Parade - Homemade Bagels and What I LearnedProduce On Parade - Homemade Bagels and What I LearnedProduce On Parade - Homemade Bagels and What I LearnedGood deed of the day: Speak Out Against Walmart's Cruelty to Pigs. Why wouldn't you? You'll see my signature there! It only takes five seconds and ugh, Walmart, don't even get me started...

German word of the day: Bakery --> Bäckerei (pronounced: bake-er-rye) 

Listening to: [soundcloud url="https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/58610816" params="color=73bd97&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_artwork=true" width="100%" height="166" iframe="true" /]

[yumprint-recipe id='83']Recipe slightly adapted from Cook's Illustrated, so you know it's good.