But I'm glad I did. They were really good. 'Were' is the operative word there. I used all purpose flour but the original recipe called for wheat and white. You can leave them plain or top them however you like. The original recipe is here. I hope you enjoy these too.
3/4 teaspoon active dry yeast
1-2/3 cups warm water
3 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon honey
4 1/2 cups flour
1-1/2 tablespoons table salt
Poppy seeds, sesame seeds, coarse salt, rye seeds, etc., etc. (whatever you'd like to top 'em with!)
Vegetable oil (for bowl)
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, whisk together the yeast and water. Let stand fo 5 minutes (until foamy).
- Attach bowl to mixer fitted with the dough hook and -- with the mixer on low speed -- add the sugar, honey, flour, and salt. Knead for about 1 minute (until a slightly tacky -- but not sticky -- dough forms). You may need to add more flour or water depending on what you find. If so -- just add in 1 tablespoon amounts.
- Continue to knead dough for about 5 more minutes -- then transfer to a lightly oiled bowl and cover with oiled plastic wrap.
- Let rise in a warm place for 2 hours (until doubled in bulk).
- Divide dough into 10 equal pieces. Cover with a damp kitchen towel (the book reminds us to make sure the towel is CLEAN, which I find hilarious). Let rest for about 20 minutes.
- Line two unrimmed baking sheets (no worries -- mine were rimmed, so I don't know the
benefitof using the unrimmed sheets) with parchment paper and lightly brush with oil; set aside.
- With lightly oiled hands, roll each piece of dough into a 6-inch rope. Form a circle around your hand and then press the two ends (rather, roll them) together to seal. There really isn't a great way to explain how to fasten them together -- so go with your gut!
- Place the bagels 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Cover with a piece of oiled plastic wrap (I used the same one from earlier in the process), and let rest until puffed (about 20 minutes).
- Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (260 C) -- with racks in the upper and lower thirds.
- Fill a large stockpot (the wider the better, Martha notes) with water and bring to a boil.
- Gently drop bagels into the water (as many as will comfortably fit without touching each other). After 30 seconds, use a slotted spoon to gently flip the bagels over -- simmer for yet another 30 seconds. (NOTE: I only boiled 2 at a time.)
- Then, using the slotted spoon again, return the bagels to the parchment-lined sheets. Top them with the seeds or salt -- you must do this when the bagels are still wet so everything sticks to them.
- When you've finished this process with all to-be bagels, immediately place sheets in the oven. Bake for 5 minutes and then rotate the sheets and reduce the temperature to 350 degrees F (176-ish degrees C). Bake until golden brown (about 10 minutes -- but mine only took 8).
- THEN use a spatula (I just made my husband do this part, as he seems to be impervious to heat) and flip bagels over. Continue baking for another 5 minutes -- or until the back-sides are golden brown as well.
- Transfer bagels to wire rack to cool!