Sunday, June 08, 2008

Baking with Nigella

I used to bake bagels all the time and then I just fell out of the habit. So this weekend, I put on my apron and set to work, making bagels. I use a recipe from Nigella Lawson's "How to be a Domestic Goddess" which you know makes me feel like a Domestic Goddess sometimes.

Just a warning though, this recipe is time consuming. It is not difficult but waiting for the dough to rise and cook does take some time. It is completely worth it though when you take that first bite of bagel!

Cookbook

Ingredients

* 7 cups white flour, plus more as necessary for kneading
* 1 tablespoon of salt
* 1 package of rapid yeast
* 2 tablespoons of sugar
* 1 tablespoon vegetable oil, plus more for greasing
* 2 1/4 cup warm water, plus more as needed
* 2 tablespoon of malt

Directions

Bagel Dough

1. Combine the flour, salt and yeast together in a large bowl. Add the sugar and the oil to the water in another bowl. Make a well in the dry ingredients and add the liquid, mixing to a dough with a spatula or wooden spoon.

Bagel Dough being Kneeded

2. Knead the dough either by hand or with dough hook, trying to add more flour if you can, dough is better drier than wetter, the dough will be stiff and hard work, even with the dough hook it takes 10 minutes.

Allow to Raise

3. Form the dough into a ball and put it into an oiled bowl, turning once to coat all around, then cover the bowl with plastic wrap and leave it to rise for 1 hour. It should be well risen, and when you poke it with your finger, the impression should remain.

Punching the Bagel Dough

4. Punch the dough down and then give a good knead and divide into 3 pieces. Using your hands, roll each piece into a rope then cut each rope into 5 pieces. Roll each piece between the palms of your hands into a ball and then roll into another rope, curling to form ring. Seal the ends by overlapping.

Rolling out Bagel Dough

5. Put on a large pan of water to boil, when it boils add the malt.

6. Sit the bagels on the baking sheets cover with tea towels and leave for 20 minutes to rise. Preheat oven to 500F.

Bagels for Raising

7. When the water begins to boil, drop a couple of bagels at a time into the boiling water and boil for 1 minute turning them once. I use tongs for this but I know Nigella prefers using a few spatulas.

Bagels Boiling

8. After you poach the bagels, put them put them back onto the oiled baking sheets, well spaced and then bake for 10-15 minutes until they’re shiny and golden brown.

Bagels Baking

These bagels freeze quite nicely too! Allow to cool and place in freezer bags before placing in the freezer.

Baked Bagel

As you can see my Bagels turned out to be more in the shape of a C than an O. To fix this in the future, I need to really pinch the two ends together. Having a helper in the kitchen who can do this for you, really helps out!

Finished Bagel

My home tasting board gave these a thumbs up! I think Scott may have had about 4 of these for breakfast today which may be why he wasn't hungry for lunch.
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