Oh dear goodness. I’ve reached Bagel Nirvana.
If you’ve been following me, you know that I just piloted the famous Peter Reinhart’s bagel recipe this weekend. It has received so many rave reviews; trust me, it’s as good as everyone says it is. The best part? …other than getting to enjoy New York City bakery-style bagels at home? They’re SO easy to make. I followed his recipe precisely, and the results were stunning and delectable.
My batch of six large bagels came out of the oven with perfect, golden, blistered exteriors. After the long 30-minute wait period, I sliced into one, slathered it with my Vegetable Cream Cheese Spread, and found the texture to be divine. These bagels are exactly what the bagel gods meant for them to be: dense, chewy, and worth every bit of effort (and gas money) that went into a) locating “barley malt syrup” and b) creating them.
I’m not longer [as] afraid of making recipes requiring yeast. This was definitely a daunting challenge going into it, but I’m so glad I gave them a try. For now, these bagels have given me a boost of confidence to pursue other delicious, carb-loaded gems.
Finally, my comments on the process.
-I used my KitchenAid stand mixer with the dough hook to do all of the mixing and kneading; this eliminates dirtying your counter, and also saves some “elbow grease.”
-When shaping the bagels, I used the “professional” method suggested. Make sure you really squeeze the two ends closed because one of mine unraveled a bit during baking.
-Use somewhat of a deep pot for the poaching process. I used my Le Creuset dutch oven (5.5 quart) and it nearly overflowed after adding the poaching ingredients. It really foams up!
-I misted my oven right before putting the bagels in the oven for some added humidity.
-This is a rather lengthy process for six bagels, so I will probably double the recipe next time and freeze half of them.
I hope that you are given confidence by my experience so that you, too, can enjoy fresh-from-the-oven bagels!