Today I watched Julia Child and Lauren Groveman prepared Bagel.
I find Lauren's dough kneading technique interesting and as soon as the show was over, I decided to bake me bagels for .. well, by the time it's done, it's going to be my supper. Regardless,...
1 egg white strained for egg wash the bagel
Varieties of sprinkles - poppy seed, sesame seed, chopped garlic, coarse salt, etc. for the top of the bagels
pinch of baking soda for boiling bagel
1/4 C sugar for boiling bagel
Ice Cubes for steam in oven
Corn meal for the peel to transfer bagels onto the baking stone
Yeast mixture - Mix this three ingredients together and set aside to bubble and frothy looking.
1. 1 package dry yeast
2. 1-1/4 C warm water
3. pinch of sugar
Dough - mix the listed ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Large wooden spoon to mix with.
2 C warm water - body temp
3 T of vegetable shortening * I ran out, so I used 'Imperial margarine'
1 Tb salt
1 Tb sugar
1 Tb Liquid Barley Malt or 2 Tb sugar to give nice chewy texture *Used 1-1/2 Tb honey
Fresh ground black pepper right into the dough mixture
Add yeast mixture in to the dough mixture. Mix the dough ingredients in the bowl with large spoon. Incorporate some more flour into the bowl to help the dough form into a wet ball and away from the sides of the bowl. - about 2 min.
Sprinkle work surface with flour. Transfer wet dough out to the surface. Holding dough scraper in one hand.
Flour the top of the dough. Flour your hands.
Using dough scraper, scrape the dough over from each side and turn bottom to the top.
Repeat with flouring and scrape sides to the center and turn bottom to the top about three time. Then, sprinkle some more flour on the dough and give a quick yank push down to the dough 1, 2, 3, motion and roll over. Sprinkle some more flour and repeat the quick yank push down to the dough 4 to 5 times.
The dough's elasticity has reached when you squeeze the dough with both hands to the center and when let go, the dough spreads down. *The dough is still a very soft dough.
Form into a ball by tucking the ends under.
Brush the bowl with melted butter. Kaplunk the dough ball into the bowl.
Brush the top of the dough with the melted butter.
Brush the plastic cover with the melted butter. Cover with towel and leave at warm place to rise to double. About 1 to 1-1/2 hour.
Remove the Cover and Punch Down all around. "It is very wet".
Divide the dough with the dough scraper.
Option: You can refrigerate both in individual greased covered bowl and refrigerate up to 2 days to make bagels in the morning.
*I saved the half of the dough in a plastic wear and refrigerated.
Preheat the oven to 500'F with Bread/Pizza stone in it and on top of a cookie sheet pan with lip on one end. (To hold the 1/4 C of Ice Cubes when ready to bake - that's all it is for. So don't use a baking sheet)
Divide the dough into equal sizes of 6. On the show, there were 6 bagel portions.
I would have divide mine next time into 8 or maybe 10. (I like mine small.)
Then, pull all sides of dough to the center as though you are enclosing an object in the center of the dough. Then, pinch the ends together, and turn the dough down with the smooth side up.
Set aside on floured surface and cover with towel to keep the skin from forming.
Take one and push the dough down with the palm of your hand a bit.
*Boil a pot of water in a large pot with pinch of Baking Soda & 1/4 C sugar
Push the index finger through the center. Then, rotate with two fingers (right and left index fingers) in the hole to extend the dough outward in circular motion.
The dough should extend to "Silly" large circle.
Place on floured surface and cover with towel. Do the same with the rest.
Dunk the first bagel with hole rested into the hot boiling water.
It may sink down to the bottom, then floats up. You might have to help it come up if sticks to the bottom of the pot.
Boil for 1 min, then turn it over. Boil for 1 min.
Transfer to a surface covered with towel. *I used my kitchen sackcloth to catch water from the bagel. It worked well.
Lauren even dry pat the boiled bagel with towel.
Separate one egg. Save the egg yolk for some other usage.
Strain the egg white through a strainer.
Using pastry brush, brush each boiled and dry looking bagel with egg white.
Sprinkle the top with poppy seeds, sesame seeds, plain, etc. with your favorite toppings.
* I chopped Jalapeno and sprinkled or added to the dough.
Place each garnished dough onto a peel covered with corn meal and sesame seed (to have flavor on the bottom of the bagel also.
Transfer the bagels into oven.
Add 1/4 C of ice cubes on the tray that is sitting under the baking stone to create steam.
Drop down the baking temperature to 450'F and bake for 25 min.
Turn off the heat and leave bagels in for 5 min.
Then, crack open the oven door and rest for another 5 min.
Remove the bagels to cooking rack and cool for about 20 min.
Enjoy with variety of toppings.
The next time, I will try to give each bagel a more consistent form and size.
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