by Susan Hanna
We love bagels, but it’s hard to find ones without additives and preservatives. So I was looking forward to trying this recipe in the Toronto Star, which is adapted from one in Feast: Recipes & Stories From a Canadian Road Trip. It takes a bit of time, but the results are worth it — the bagels are light and chewy with a hint of sweetness. Rolling the dough and forming the loops takes a bit of practice — not all of my dough loops held together — but they still tasted good! If you want these to be less sweet, reduce the sugar by 1 or 2 tablespoons (15 to 30 ml). If you prefer a denser bagel, reduce the rising time to 30 minutes.
Avoiding Additives and Preservatives
Make sure your oil and honey are preservative-free. For more recipes using all-natural ingredients, visit Eye For a Recipe.
- 1-½ cups (375 ml) warm water
- 1 tbsp (15 ml) active dry yeast
- 5 tbsp (75 ml) white sugar
- 3 tbsp (45 ml) vegetable oil, plus extra for coating dough
- 2 tbsp (30 ml) maple syrup
- 1 egg, beaten
- 4 cups (1 L) all-purpose flour, plus extra for sprinkling
- 1-½ tsp (7 ml) salt
- 12 cups (3 L) water, for boiling
- 1/3 cup (80 ml) honey
- Sesame and poppy seeds for garnish
- In a large bowl or stand mixer bowl, combine water and yeast and let sit for about 5 minutes, or until mixture begins to foam (meaning yeast is active).
- Add in sugar, oil, maple syrup and egg and stir until sugar has dissolved.
- Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine flour and salt. Stir until well mixed.
- With dough hook attachment on lowest speed, stir large bowl, adding in flour-salt mixture 1 cup (250 ml) at a time, leaving about 30 seconds between each cup. Using a spatula, scrape down any flour that sticks to the sides. Continue stirring until dough is sticky and consistent in colour without visible streaks of flour.
- On a lightly floured countertop, place dough and sprinkle about 1 teaspoon (5 ml) flour on top. Knead dough for about 10 minutes, until smooth and elastic, adding more flour as necessary but don’t overdo it — dough should be sticky but pull away from hands and countertop easily. Shape dough into a ball and set aside.
- In a medium-sized bowl, add ½ teaspoon oil. Roll dough ball in bowl until covered. Cover bowl with damp tea towel or plastic wrap and let dough rise for 1 hour, or until it doubles in size.
- When dough is nearly ready, in a large pot over high heat, add water and honey and bring to boil.
- Preheat your oven to 425 F (220 C) with one rack at top and another on bottom.
- Punch down dough, place on counter and divide it into 12 equal portions. Roll each portion into roughly 8-inch-long (25 cm) rope, then bring ends together, rolling ends until they stick together, forming a loop.
- Using a large slotted spoon, place bagels gently one at a time into boiling water. Cook 3 or 4 at a time. Do not let bagels overlap. Boil for 90 seconds, flipping bagels halfway. Remove with the spoon and place on cooling rack.
- Let bagels cool about 5 minutes. Coat with sesame seeds or poppy seeds.
- On a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat, place bagels about 1/2 inch (1 cm) apart. Place on the top rack in oven. Bake for 10 minutes. Flip bagels and place sheet onto bottom oven rack. Continue baking until tops are golden-brown, about 5 to 10 minutes.
- Remove bagels from oven, transfer to cooling rack and let sit 5 to 10 minutes before serving. Bagels can also be stored for several days in a zip-lock bag; allow to cool fully before bagging.
Enjoy with cream cheese and smoked salmon, tomatoes, avocado and/or capers.
From the Toronto Star