Sometimes I am not the best planner when it comes to baking. I can plan out my life for weeks in advance, but time in the kitchen? Not so much. Often on a whim, I’ll decide I need something sweet immediately, so I’ll rummage through the pantry and throw something together. In those instances, I am limited by what I have on hand, but usually I can come up with something plenty delicious. It’s much less frequently that I actually plan ahead of time to make something specific, though I do have my monthly Secret Recipe Club challenge to keep my on track. Or at least I should…
For my January Secret Recipe Club post, I had intended to make bagels, but lack of planning left me less than 24 hours to the posting time, with bagels that needed at least 12-24 hours to rise. So I had to shift gears at the last minute and ended up making these delicious brownies, but at the end of the day I also had bagels sitting in the fridge ready to be finished.
Prior to this attempt, I’d never made bagels before. I really love bagels, but as someone who tries to limit gluten intake, they are not a common part of my diet. Nonetheless, they were a baking project on my list for a long, long time, so I was psyched to try them out – and even more psyched to find that they’re easy to make!
Bagels require a simple yeast dough, which is shaped, chilled overnight, boiled and then baked to finish. The boiling is key to creating their trademark exterior, and giving them that pleasing bit of chew when you first bite into one. For my first attempt, I was really pleased with how they came out. Side-by-side with a New York bagel, sliced in half, they had a very similar density and crumb, which I was psyched about, and also a really wonderful bready taste. I prefer most of my carbs whole-wheat, but for you whole wheat haters out there, these are really mild. They’re a 50/50 mix of white and wheat flours, so they have a superb texture and a pretty decent nutritional profile comparatively. Toasted up with cream cheese or loaded with an egg, cheese and veggie sandwich (both ways I tried), these can’t be beat!