Category Archives: Bread

Red Velvet Cookie Dough Bagels

The baker in me instantly associates cream cheese with red velvet cake..I love cream cheese buttercream, and think it is simply the best frosting. However, most people think of bagels. As I was daydreaming about breakfast one morning, my thoughts wandered a bit, and settled on the idea of a red velvet bagel….with a fluffy, lightly sweetened, cream cheese schmear 😛

Sponge:

  • 4 cups high-gluten bread flour
  • 1 teaspoon instant (rapid rise) yeast
  • 2-1/2 cups of water at room temperature

Dough:

  • 3 cups bread flour
  • 1 additional teaspoon instant (rapid rise) yeast
  • 1 tablespoon barley malt syrup
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 2 tablespoons of honey
  • 3 squirts red gel food coloring

(Makes 12 large bagels or up to 24 mini bagels)

Toppings/flavoring:

  • Egg wash (beaten egg white)
  • sugar for sprinkling

Time:
Sponge: 5 minutes mixing, 2-hour rise
Dough: 1 hour (kneading, resting and shaping)
Delayed rise: Overnight
Baking: 15 minutes

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Begin by mixing the 4 cups of bread flour, 1 teaspoon of instant (rapid rise) yeast, and 2-1/2 cups of water in a 4 quart mixing bowl. It should have a thick consistency. Cover the bowl with plastic. Let the yeast do its job and allow the mixture to double in size (at least two hours).

Once the sponge has risen, mix 1 tablespoon of barley malt syrup, 2 tablespoons of honey, 1/4 cup cocoa, additional teaspoon yeast, and 3 teaspoons salt. Before mixing in the flour, mix in the food coloring. Add in the flour in three installments, and mix until fully incorporated.

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Once all of the ingredients have been mixed in, knead the dough either by hand or with a dough hook. Add additional flour or water as necessary, and knead until the dough is a little stiff (not tacky) and a little springy. It should be satiny and smooth, without any dry bits of flour. This takes about five minutes using a dough hook, or about 10 minutes if kneading by hand. Divide the dough it into 12, equally sized pieces.

Shape each piece into a round smooth ball by using your thumbs to pull one surface of the dough around so that it forms a nice smooth skin, and squeeze the folds on the bottom together to seal this ball. Take it and roll it between both cupped palms to further smooth out the folds and form a nearly perfectly round ball.

Places these on a greased cookie sheet, or silicone baking pad. You should let them rest for about 10 – 20 minutes to allow the gluten strands to reform.

To shape the bagels, grab a ball of dough and push your thumb into the center. Poke with fingers of both hands, begin enlarging the hole. Work your hands around the circle so that the dough remains the same thickness around the hole. As the hole closes up, keep stretching it until it shrinks to no less than about 2″ diameter when relaxed.

As each bagel is formed, place it back on the greased cookie sheet, or greased silicone baking mat. Make sure to leave enough room between bagels; 6 – 8 bagels will fit on a cookie sheet. Once the bagels have been formed, let them rest for a few minutes to allow them to proof. As they begin to rise a bit, they are ready for the fridge. Spray the bagels with a light cooking oil spray and lay a sheet of plastic wrap over them.Place them in the refrigerator overnight. Chilling the dough allows the yeast to work on the proteins in the dough, which yields some of the classic flavors that make bagels taste like bagels.

Place two baking racks in the center of the oven, and preheat to 450 degrees F. Fill a pot with water, and add one tablespoon of barley malt syrup, and one tablespoon baking soda. The makes the water a little bit more alkaline. Bring the water to a boil. Prepare a couple of baking sheets. Take the bagels out of the refrigerator. Carefully lift the bagels, and place them two at a time in the boiling water.

Boil them for 45 seconds to a minute on one side, then flip them over and boil for an additional 45 seconds to one minute on the other side. The longer you boil them, the chewier the crust will become.

Using a slotted spoon, place the boiled bagels on paper towels. Pat them dry, then place them on the baking sheet. Brush the bagel tops with egg wash, then place the cookie sheets in the center of the oven and bake for 5 minutes. Take then bagels out at this point, and sprinkle the top with each bagel 1 tsp of sugar. Let the bagels bake for another 5 to 8  minutes, until they’re just beginning to brown.

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I went a little crazy and ended up stuffing my bagels with my favorite cookie dough! I had some leftover from a batch of cookies, and I couldn’t resist. I also didn’t punch holes into some of them, and stuffed them with a slightly sweetened cream cheese spread 🙂

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Chocolate Chip Bagels

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My friends and I planned a picnic in Central Park, and I volunteered to be on bagel duty. I experimented a lot with bagel recipes and flavors last Fall, and really fell in love with this traditional bagel recipe. Homemade bagels always take a little bit of effort, but they are SO worth it. The ingredients include:

Sponge:

  • 4 cups high-gluten bread flour
  • 1 teaspoon instant (rapid rise) yeast
  • 2-1/2 cups of water at room temperature

Dough:

  • 1.5 cups chocolate chips
  • 3 1/2 cups bread flour
  • 1 additional teaspoon instant (rapid rise) yeast
  • 2 tablespoons of barley malt syrup (can also use honey or molasses)
  • Egg wash (beaten egg white)

Yield: 12 large bagels
Sponge: 5 minutes mixing, 2-hour rise
Dough: 1 hour (kneading, resting and shaping)
Delayed rise: Overnight
Boiling and Baking: 30 minutes

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Begin by mixing the 4 cups of bread flour, 1 teaspoon of instant (rapid rise) yeast, and 2-1/2 cups of water in a 4 quart mixing bowl. It should have a thick consistency. Cover the bowl with plastic. Let the yeast do its job and allow the mixture to double in size (at least two hours).

Once the sponge has risen, mix 1 tablespoon of barley malt syrup, 2 tablespoons of honey, additional teaspoon yeast, 3 teaspoons salt, and about 3 1/2 cups of the bread flour into the sponge. Once the ingredients are fully incorporated, add in the chocolate chips, and knead the dough either by hand or with a dough hook. Add the remaining flour as necessary, and knead until the dough is a little stiff (not tacky) and a little springy. It should be satiny and smooth, without any dry bits of flour. This takes about five minutes using a dough hook, or about 10 minutes if kneading by hand. Divide the dough it into 12, equally sized pieces.

Shape each piece into a round smooth ball by using your thumbs to pull one surface of the dough around so that it forms a nice smooth skin, and squeeze the folds on the bottom together to seal this ball. Take it and roll it between both cupped palms to further smooth out the folds and form a nearly perfectly round ball.

Places these on a greased cookie sheet, or silicone baking pad. You should let them rest for about 10 – 20 minutes to allow the gluten strands to reform.

To shape the bagels, grab a ball of dough and push your thumb into the center. Poke with fingers of both hands, begin enlarging the hole. Work your hands around the circle so that the dough remains the same thickness around the hole. As the hole closes up, keep stretching it until it shrinks to no less than about 2″ diameter when relaxed.

As each bagel is formed, place it back on the greased cookie sheet, or greased silicone baking mat. Make sure to leave enough room between bagels; 6 – 8 bagels will fit on a cookie sheet. Once the bagels have been formed, let them rest for a few minutes to allow them to proof. As they begin to rise a bit, they are ready for the fridge. Spray the bagels with a light cooking oil spray and lay a sheet of plastic wrap over them.Place them in the refrigerator overnight. Chilling the dough allows the yeast to work on the proteins in the dough, which yields some of the classic flavors that make bagels taste like bagels.

Place two baking racks in the center of the oven, and preheat to 450 degrees F. Fill a pot with water, and add one tablespoon of barley malt syrup, and one tablespoon baking soda. The makes the water a little bit more alkaline. Bring the water to a boil. Prepare a couple of baking sheets. Take the bagels out of the refrigerator. Carefully lift the bagels, and place them two at a time in the boiling water.

Boil them for 45 seconds to a minute on one side, then flip them over and boil for an additional 45 seconds to one minute on the other side. The longer you boil them, the chewier the crust will become.

Using a slotted spoon, place the boiled bagels on paper towels. Pat them dry with a paper towel (taking care to not wipe away all the melting chocolate chips, then place them on the baking sheet. If any chocolate chips fell out during the boil, feel free push a few more into the tops of the bagels. Brush the bagel tops with egg wash. Let the bagels bake for 11-14 minutes, until they’re golden brown.

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My review: I really liked the amount of chocolate chips in the dough, and found that a Nutella schmear is perfect with these bagels. They had a great chew, and the crust was perfectly crispy.

Sharp Cheddar Jalapeño Bagels

My friend Sarah and I decided to have a brunch at our apartment this weekend…and before we knew it, we had 20 people over! Luckily, we planned appropriately and made enough food to feed the masses 😀 One of the items on our menu were these Cheddar Jalapeño Bagels, and they were delicious. Bagels always take a little bit of effort, but they are SO worth it. The ingredients include:

Sponge:

  • 4 cups high-gluten bread flour
  • 1 teaspoon instant (rapid rise) yeast
  • 2-1/2 cups of water at room temperature

Dough:

  • 1 cup sharp cheddar, shredded
  • 1.5 cups jalapeños, membranes removed, finely diced (about 8-10 small peppers)
  • 3-3/4 cups bread flour
  • 1 additional teaspoon instant (rapid rise) yeast
  • 1 tablespoon barley malt syrup
  • 2 tablespoons of honey

(Makes 14 large bagels or up to 24 mini bagels)

Toppings/flavoring:

  • 1 cup sharp cheddar
  • Egg wash (beaten egg white)

Time:
Sponge: 5 minutes mixing, 2-hour rise
Dough: 1 hour (kneading, resting and shaping)
Delayed rise: Overnight
Baking: 15 minutes

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Begin by mixing the 4 cups of bread flour, 1 teaspoon of instant (rapid rise) yeast, and 2-1/2 cups of water in a 4 quart mixing bowl. It should have a thick consistency. Cover the bowl with plastic. Let the yeast do its job and allow the mixture to double in size (at least two hours).

Once the sponge has risen, mix 1 tablespoon of barley malt syrup, 2 tablespoons of honey, additional teaspoon yeast, 3 teaspoons salt, and about 3 1/2 cups of the bread flour into the sponge. Once the ingredients are fully incorporated, added in the jalapenos and cheddar.

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Note: I used a food processor to chop up the jalapenos, because my hands always react to the oil in jalapenos. If you do dice them by hand, be careful!

Once all of the ingredients have been mixed in, knead the dough either by hand or with a dough hook. Add the remaining flour as necessary, and knead until the dough is a little stiff (not tacky) and a little springy. It should be satiny and smooth, without any dry bits of flour. This takes about five minutes using a dough hook, or about 10 minutes if kneading by hand. Divide the dough it into 14, equally sized pieces.

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Shape each piece into a round smooth ball by using your thumbs to pull one surface of the dough around so that it forms a nice smooth skin, and squeeze the folds on the bottom together to seal this ball. Take it and roll it between both cupped palms to further smooth out the folds and form a nearly perfectly round ball.

Places these on a greased cookie sheet, or silicone baking pad. You should let them rest for about 10 – 20 minutes to allow the gluten strands to reform.

To shape the bagels, grab a ball of dough and push your thumb into the center. Poke with fingers of both hands, begin enlarging the hole. Work your hands around the circle so that the dough remains the same thickness around the hole. As the hole closes up, keep stretching it until it shrinks to no less than about 2″ diameter when relaxed.

As each bagel is formed, place it back on the greased cookie sheet, or greased silicone baking mat. Make sure to leave enough room between bagels; 6 – 8 bagels will fit on a cookie sheet. Once the bagels have been formed, let them rest for a few minutes to allow them to proof. As they begin to rise a bit, they are ready for the fridge. Spray the bagels with a light cooking oil spray and lay a sheet of plastic wrap over them.Place them in the refrigerator overnight. Chilling the dough allows the yeast to work on the proteins in the dough, which yields some of the classic flavors that make bagels taste like bagels.

Place two baking racks in the center of the oven, and preheat to 450 degrees F. Fill a pot with water, and add one tablespoon of barley malt syrup, and one tablespoon baking soda. The makes the water a little bit more alkaline. Bring the water to a boil. Prepare a couple of baking sheets. Take the bagels out of the refrigerator. Carefully lift the bagels, and place them two at a time in the boiling water.

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Boil them for 45 seconds to a minute on one side, then flip them over and boil for an additional 45 seconds to one minute on the other side. The longer you boil them, the chewier the crust will become.

Using a slotted spoon, place the boiled bagels on paper towels. Pat them dry, then place them on the baking sheet. Brush the bagel tops with egg wash, then place the cookie sheets in the center of the oven and bake for five minutes. Take then bagels out at this point, and sprinkle the tops with the shredded cheddar. Let the bagels bake for another 7 to 10 minutes, until they’re golden brown.

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My review: I really liked the amount of jalapenos in the dough. The cheddar helps balance the slight kick from the jalapenos, as does the cream cheese. The bagels also had a great chew and crust, and I will definitely make these again.

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I still can’t believe we fit so many people in our apartment. In addition to the bagels, we made a feta spinach mushroom egg bake, broiled grapefruit halves, and egg sandwiches.  The egg sandwiches were assembled using buttermilk biscuits, honey butter, a fried egg, and bacon. Based on how quickly the food was eaten, I would say everyone liked the spread 😀

Authentic New York Bagel Recipe

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I know I say this every time I try a new bagel recipe… But I mean it this time. This is the best bagel recipe I’ve tried. I’ve experimented with with different yeasts, overnight rises, sponges, boiling times, and oven temperatures….but this recipe takes the cake, and definitely deserves a post. All the leavening in this recipe is done the night before, which makes life so much easier. While fresh bagels in the morning are amazing, it is always a struggle to get out of bed at five in the morning to get the dough ready for its first rise.

The factors that distinguish this recipe include the sponge, the high-gluten flour, the malt syrup, the baking temperature, and the use of alkaline boiling water. The ingredients include:

Sponge:
4 cups high-gluten bread flour
1 teaspoon instant (rapid rise) yeast
2-1/2 cups of water at room temperature

Dough:
3-3/4 cups bread flour
1 additional teaspoon instant (rapid rise) yeast
1 tablespoon barley malt syrup
2 tablespoons of honey
3 teaspoons of salt
(Makes 1 dozen large bagels or up to 24 mini bagels)

Toppings/flavoring:
Poppy seeds
Egg white
3 Tbsp cinnamon
1 cup raisins
1/2 cup blueberries
1/3 cup blueberry juice (I used POM)

Time:
Sponge: 5 minutes mixing, 2-hour rise
Dough: 1 hour (kneading, resting and shaping)
Delayed rise: Overnight
Baking: 15 – 25 minutes.

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Begin by mixing the 4 cups of bread flour, 1 teaspoon of instant (rapid rise) yeast, and 2-1/2 cups of water in a 4 quart mixing bowl. It should have a thick consistency. Cover the bowl with plastic. Let the yeast do its job and allow the mixture to double in size (at least two hours).

Once the sponge has risen, mix 1 tablespoon of barley malt syrup, 2 tablespoons of honey, additional teaspoon yeast, 3 teaspoons salt, and about 3 cups of the bread flour into the sponge. Save the remaining 3/4 cup of flour for kneading. This step is easily accomplished in a bread machine or stand mixer, but can also be done by hand. If you’ve used the high-gluten flour, this step might take a little extra effort. Make sure you keep an eye on your mixer…. It might overheat!

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Once all of the ingredients have been mixed in, knead the dough either by hand or with a dough hook. Add the remaining flour as necessary, and knead until the dough is a little stiff (not tacky) and a little springy. It should be satiny and smooth, without any dry bits of flour. This takes about five minutes using a dough hook, or about 10 minutes if kneading by hand.At this point in time, I flavored the dough. I doubled this recipe, and divided all the dough equally between three bowls.

For the blueberry bagels, I added 1/3 cup blueberry juice, and 1/2 cup frozen blueberries. I had to add an additional cup of flour to get the dough consistency right, and kneaded the dough again for about five minutes.

For the cinnamon raisin bagels, I added 3 tablespoons cinnamon, and 1 cup of raisins. I kneaded this dough for another five minutes as well.

For the poppyseed bagels, I left the dough plain, and simply topped them with egg wash and poppy seeds after they were boiled.

Once the dough has been kneaded, divide it into one dozen pieces, approximately 4-1/2 ounces per piece.

Shape these into round smooth balls by using your thumbs to pull one surface of the dough around to that it forms a nice smooth skin and squeeze the folds on the bottom together to seal this ball. Take it and roll it between both cupped palms to further smooth out the folds and form a nearly perfectly round ball.

Places these on a greased cookie sheet, or silicone baking pad. You should let them rest for about 10 – 20 minutes to allow the gluten strands to reform.

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To shape the bagels, grab a ball of dough and push your thumb into the center. Poke with fingers of both hands, begin enlarging the hole until it is at least 3″ in diameter. Work your hands around the circle so that the dough remains the same thickness around the hole. As the hole closes up, keep stretching it until it shrinks to no less than about 2″ diameter when relaxed.

As each bagel is formed, place back on the greased cookie sheet, or greased silicone baking mat. Make sure to leave enough room between bagels; 6 – 8 bagels will fit on a standard cookie sheet.

Once the bagels have been formed, let them rest for a few minutes to allow them to proof. Once they begin to rise a bit, they are ready for the fridge. Spray the bagels with a light cooking oil spray and lay a sheet of plastic wrap over them.

Place them in the refrigerator overnight. Chilling the dough allows the yeast to work on the proteins in the dough, which yields some of the classic flavors that make bagels taste like bagels.

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Place two baking racks in the center of the oven and preheat to 450 degrees F. Fill a pot with water, and add one tablespoon of barley malt syrup, and one tablespoon baking soda. The makes the water a little bit more alkaline. Bring the water to a boil. Prepare a couple of baking sheets. If desired, sprinkle the greased sheets with cornmeal or plain bread crumbs. Take the bagels out of the refrigerator. Carefully lift the bagels, and place them two at a time in the boiling water.

Boil them for 45 seconds to a minute on one side, then flip them over and boil for an additional 45 seconds to one minute on the other side. The longer you boil them, the chewier the crust will become.

Using a slotted spoon, place the boiled bagels on paper towels. Pat them dry, then place them on the baking sheet and sprinkle them with a topping (or leave them plain). If you are going to top the bagels, brush the bagel tops with egg wash to ensure that the toppings stick. You can sprinkle them with a small amount of kosher salt, sesame seeds, cheese, poppy seeds…the options are endless.

To bake, place the cookie sheets in the center of the oven and bake for five minutes. Rotate the sheets by turning them 180 degrees, and put the top sheet on the bottom and vice versa. Let the bagels bake for another 7 to 10 minutes, until they’re golden brown.

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Homemade Bagels

The other night, at dinner, I listened to an animated discussion about bagels. People in NYC do not mess around when it comes to their bagels. They want them fresh, with just the right amount of chew, and a perfect crust. There is a belief that the water out here makes the bagels taste so good; but if you ask me, I’d say it’s the numerous old school, Jewish bagel shops that have perpetuated the tradition of making bagels the right way. Regardless, I realized that it was time to try to make my own bagels (following this recipe).

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The ingredients included:

  • ⅔ cups Warm Water
  • ½ Tablespoons Sugar
  • 1-½ teaspoon Yeast
  • 1 tablespoon malt syrup
  • 2 cups All-purpose Flour
  • ½ Tablespoons Vegetable Oil
  • ¾ teaspoons Salt
  • 1 Tbs Baking soda

Poppy seed variation:

  • egg wash (egg white and a splash of water)
  • poppyseeds

Blueberry variation:

  • 1/2 cup Blueberry juice
  • 1 pint blueberries

I made the dough this morning after a long training run (a 16 miler…ahhh!). Start by combining the water, sugar, and yeast together, and let the yeast develop for about 5 minutes. Add the flour, vegetable oil, malt syrup, and salt, and knead until the dough is elastic but firm (15 minutes by hand, 7 minutes with a dough hook). You may need to add in a bit of extra water or flour if the consistency of the dough is off, but do it little by little. Let the dough sit and rise in a warm place until it has doubled in size.

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Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead again for a few minutes, before cutting it into 6 equal pieces. Roll each piece of dough into a smooth ball, and punch a hole in the center of each ball with your thumb. Stretch the ring out gently, until the hole is about 1.5 inches in diameter. Let the bagels rise for another 30 minutes in a warm area.

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For the second batch of bagels I made, I added fresh blueberries and blueberry juice, and kneaded the dough for another five minutes, until the blueberries were well incorporated into the dough. Because of the juice and the blueberries, I had to add an additional cup of flour.

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After the second rising phase, bring 6 cups of water to a boil in a heavy-bottomed pot. When the water was gently boiling, add a tablespoon of baking soda. Place 2 bagels into the pot at a time, and let them cook for 45 seconds on each side. Once done boiling, remove the bagels and place them on paper towels (to take off excess moisture) before letting them cool on a baking sheet. Repeat these steps with the remaining bagels. Brush the tops with egg wash and top them with poppy seeds.

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Bake them in the oven at 425ºF for 18 minutes (turning them over after 10 minutes).

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We took a trip down to Russ and Daughters (an AMAZING “Appetizing Store,” more of a deli really, on Houston) to get cream cheese and lox. We decided on horseradish cream cheese, vegetable cream cheese, pastrami salmon, and Scottish lox. The fresh, warm bagels, with that delicious cream cheese and fresh lox was a winning combination. I can’t wait to try making new flavors…I’m thinking cinnamon sugar, multi-grain, and everything bagels.

Crescent Jalapeno Poppers

I feel like crescent rolls are like an open canvas, the possibilities are endless. Usually I follow my sweet tooth and make chocolate crescents, but today I leaned toward the savory side. This takes all of three ingredients:

  • crescent dough
  • 4 tablespoons chopped jalapenos
  • 4 oz. cream cheese

I preheated my oven to 350 degrees, then laid out the crescent dough. I spread about a tables spoon of cream cheese at the base of each dough triangle, then put about 1/2 tablespoon of jalapenos on top of the cream cheese.

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I rolled each crescent up starting from the base, and popped them in the oven for about 10 minutes (give or take) until they were golden brown.

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These literally went like hot cakes. I set them out and they were gone before I knew it! Definitely my favorite savory crescent recipe!!