How To Make Bagels

This is the comment thread for the Breadtopia blog post originally published here:

To leave a comment, click the Reply button below

If you do not see the "Reply" button, you will need to log in or register an account. Please click the blue "Log In" button in the upper right of the page. :arrow_upper_right:

Awesome Eric! I too would opt for the starter in the recipe :slight_smile: Hammelman’s bagels are great tasting but I never considered using bolted flour in the mix. Will definitely try it out. Thanks for the great video!!

So timely, I just made sourdough bagels this weekend. Missing old school NYC bagels and not having any visitors coming Upstate, I gave Peter Reinhart’s recipe a try. They require 5 cups of starter, and I wish I had fed it slowly over time to get a deeper flavor. You also have to proof overnight in the fridge before boiling with baking soda. The bagels were tasty, but a great deal of effort. I have been spoiled with No Knead recipes and apparently become a lazy baker! I would rather have a slice of crusty sourdough with a schmear.

I agree. In a way, I’m glad there are no easy roads to a great bagel. Makes them all the more special.

1 Like

For me the big question is, how to get the toppings to adhere to the bagel, and not burn during the bake time. Sesame seeds don’t fight me too much, but does anyone know how to get an onion or garlic topping to both stick and not burn?

How are you applying the toppings now?

I place the toppings on a bagel sized plate, and after the bagels emerge from the boil, place the bagel in the toppings, and then sprinkle more on top. [I like the toppings as bottoms as well.] Pretty simple method. An egg wash doesn’t seem right for a NY style bagel.

Well, I guess you know that’s pretty much how I do it too. Except I don’t sprinkle more after dipping in the plate of topping. Sometimes I get a bit of burning of the everything topping, but I wouldn’t even call it burning. If I bake to a golden brown on the bagels, the topping can get pretty dark, but still doesn’t taste burnt at all. There might not be much of a time difference between “well caramelized” and burnt.

I don’t do an egg wash either. I’m totally with you on the “it doesn’t seem right” thought. There’s always something of post bagel wreckage in our kitchen with toppings all over the counter. I get pretty good sticking to the bagels, but by the time they’re cut etc, you know the scene.

So maybe my problem is earlier in the process. Do you make onion or garlic bagels? Let’s talk onions first. Do you use raw minced onions, sautéed minced onions, dehydrated onions, or re-hydrated onions? I only have an issue with burning with onions and garlic. Seeds are always perfected toasted with no burning.

My “everything” toping includes both dried onion and garlic. They look so much alike, I don’t know if one is more prone to over toasting than the other. No problem with the seeds either.

Many thanks for the videos. It would be helpful on the ‘printable’ directions to have times and temps to complete the recipe.

Good suggestion. Thanks. We’ve added a “Baking Time & Temperature” paragraph at the bottom of the printable instructions.

I’ve been baking bread for years, and trying to bake bagels for almost that long! Ended up throwing most of them away, until now!!! Best homemade bagels ever! Used all White bread flour and no starter. The bagels were perfect (two of us ate five of the twelve!). Next time I will add starter and try those! Thanks, Eric. Have never been lead wrong by Breadtopia!

Music to my ears. :grin:

I am having much difficulty getting from the over nite rise to boiling water.
They look like (Tom Brady ) got a hold of them.
Getting bagels from the morning rise to the boiling water, without deflate? They are tasty just flat.

Sounds like “Bagelgate” in the making.

I have a whole bunch of questions that would likely help me trouble shoot this? I’ll start with these: Are the bagels poofy and delicate right out of the fridge, or after siting out for a while? Is the problem (or part of the problem) that the bagels are sticking to the sheet they rose on and getting mangled when you try to unstick them to put in the boiling water?

My second attempt using your method and recipe.
I’m a cinnamon raisin bagel fan (ok, so that’s not a real bagel). Anyway divided the dough in half and incorporated 2 t. cinnamon and ½ c raisins. Not pretty but great taste and chew.
Anybody have ideas on making cinnamon raisin bagels?

Hi Gary,

I think we should be asking you. Those are gorgeous!

Was the 2 t of cinnamon used for 6 bagels or all 12 pictured? I’m not clear on that. And did you find it to be about the right amount for enough cinnamon flavor to come through?

Sorry for the confusion.
I divided the 12 bagel recipe in half. I made 6 poppy seed/sesame seed and 6 cinnamon raisin bagels.
After dividing the dough I hand kneaded the ½ cup raisins and the 2 tsp. of cinnamon into the dough as best I could.
The cinnamon taste is not overpowering or underwhelming so I think 2 tsp. is about right. ½ cup of raisins seems like a tad too many. Maybe ⅓ cup on the next try.

No problem. Now that I actually engage my brain, I can see from the photo that only half of those are cinnamon raisin. I’m going to give it a go next time I make bagels. Thanks for the post.