So, things have changed. I now live in Didsbury, in Manchester! I lost a little faith in blogging whilst I was finding my feet. The good news is I have a new job! I am a libraries and archives trainee at Stockport Heritage Library. It is a traineeship for a year and I am really enjoying it! I haven't been doing much baking of late. Moving and looking for jobs was much more difficult than I expected, but the wonderful thing about my new job is I have weekends off! I can indulge in weekend baking like any other 9-5 worker. So with a renewed enthusiam i hope to post much more.
This post is a recipe for bagels. It is bagels because despite my lack of enthusiasm for baking, I have been baking bagels. They are far easier than I expected and have a soft, chewy texture. The flavor is much more lovely than the shop bagel.
The recipe is from the Good Food magazine. It is written by Edd Kimber, the Great British Bake Off winner.
7g sachet fast-action dried yeast
500g strong white flour, plus a little extra for shaping
2 tbsp light brown sugar
a little oil, for greasing
1 tbsp bicarbonate of soda
1 egg white, to glaze
seeds of your choice for the topping
1. Mix the yeast with 300ml lukewarm water. Put the flour, sugar and 1 tsp salt in a large bowl and mix together. Pour over the yeasty liquid and mix into a rough dough.
2. Tip out onto the work surface and knead together until smooth and elastic – this should take around 10 mins.
3. Put the dough in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with a piece of oiled cling film. Place in a warm area and leave until doubled in size, about 1 hr, then uncover and tip onto your work surface.
4. Divide the dough into 10 portions and form into balls – I like to weigh them to make sure that they’re all the same size. Line up on 2 parchment-lined baking trays and cover lightly with cling film.
5. Leave for around 30 mins or until risen and puffy, then remove the cling film.
6. Use a floured finger to make a hole in the centre of each bagel, swirling it around to stretch the dough a little, but being careful not to knock out too much air. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4.
7. Fill a large saucepan with water and bring to the boil. Add the bicarbonate of soda to alkalise the water (see tip, below left). Place 1-2 of the bagels in the water at a time and boil for 1 min (2 mins if you want a chewier bagel), turning over halfway through. Using a slotted spoon, lift out the bagels, drain well and place back on the baking tray.
8. Brush the bagels with the egg white and sprinkle with your chosen seeds. Bake for 20-25 mins or until golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool before eating. They will keep for 3-4 days, or freeze for 2 months.
I find boiling the bagels for just one minute is enough and make sure you time it! I have found the texture is chewy enough and still soft when boiled for this length of time. I also found it easier to have everything prepared ready for shaping and boiling. Have the trays prepared, a slotted spoon and some method of draining the excess water from the bagels.