2018 Canadian GP: Montreal Style Bagels
If we have to talk about the race I would like to take the interview technique of sandwiching the bad within the good. Montreal is an awesome city, with amazing food, super cool people, and a fervor for F1 resulting in a sold out race! The race was utterly boring. The championship is still alive!
Welp, that's that. Let's talk about bagels! I had never thought about making bagels, ever. I just assumed it was too hard, they'd be too complicated, or they couldn't possibly be as good as my local bagelry. Turns out I was wrong on all accounts. Yes, they took time and a bit of fiddly effort here and there, but if you have half a day and are willing to do a little trial and error it is totally worth it. These are Delicious.
We ate them fresh with whipped cream cheese, lox, a little onion and capers and then had them the next morning lightly toasted with a smear of butter. We took them to work with scrambled eggs and bacon slices for a simple lunch. They were delicious on all accounts.
When it came to making these, as usual I found too many recipes and couldn’t decide which one to follow, and inevitably ended up choosing two and following both… Sometimes this totally ruins things, like when I ended up putting yogurt into a hot curry and curdling the whole thing. Oops. But, this time, it worked like magic and these bagels were amazing! The only thing I would change is to make 18 rather than 12 as they were rather large and my understanding is that Montreal Style Bagels are meant to be on the smaller side.
Montreal Style Bagels
4 1/2 teaspoon dry active yeast (2 packages)
1 1/2 cups warm (not hot) water
1 egg yolk
1 cup honey, divided
1/4 cup canola oil or other neutral-flavored oil
1/2 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
About 4-5 cups bread flour (can use all-purpose)
1/2 to 1 cup poppy seeds or sesame seeds (optional)
1. Dissolve yeast in warm water. Let sit until foamy, about 5 minutes.
2. Add yeast and water to mixing bowl or bowl of a stand mixer, add egg, and egg yolk, whisk until combined. Mix in ½ cup honey, the oil, and salt.
3. Add flour one cup at a time mixing until combined. Add flour until dough begins to pull away from the side of the bowl, this may be 4, 4 ½ or 5 cups of flour.
4. If using a stand mixer, change mixer to dough hook and knead for approximately 10 minutes. If kneading by hand, turn out dough onto lightly floured surface and knead until it becomes firmly elastic. Cover and let rest for 10 minutes.
5. Prepare 2 cookie sheets covered in parchment paper, sprayed with cooking spray, and have ready two sheets of parchment sprayed with cooking spray to lay on top of bagels.
6. Divide dough into 12-18 evenly sized pieces. Roll each piece into an 8-10 inch rope, then bring the ends together and press to shape into a circle. I found the Youtube video, mentioned above, helpful in seeing a good technique to bring the dough together.
7. Set each shaped bagel on prepared cookie sheets, let them rest of 30 minutes. In the meantime, about 10 minutes before they are done resting heat oven to 425 F and start a large pot of water boiling. Once water begins boiling add ½ cup honey and stir in to dissolve.
8. Prepare more baking sheets, lined with parchment paper (no spray this time). Make egg wash, by whisking one whole egg in a bowl. Set poppy seeds and/or sesame seeds in dishes ready to be sprinkled on bagels. (I like to use a spoon or my hands to sprinkle on, dipping is far too messy.)
9. Boil bagels for 45 seconds on each side. You can do this individually or in batches as many as at a time as your pot (and attention) will allow.
10. Remove from pot and set on paper-towel lined plate to remove excess water. Dip in egg wash on both sides, and sprinkle on poppy seeds or sesame seeds, set on parchment lined baking sheets.
11. Once you have a full sheet Bake at 425 F for 10-15 minutes until golden brown. You may flip them if you like, but they will bake through without flipping to preserve a fluffier top. They can burn quickly due to the egg wash and seeds, so keep an eye on them after the 10 minute mark.
12. Cool on cooling racks, eat fresh or keep on counter for 2 days in airtight container. Freeze the remainder to keep fresh.