This Simplified version of Homemade Bagel skips the process of using baking soda solution. Don’t worry, this Bagel taste great even without submerging it in baking soda water. The texture of the Bagel is slightly dense and chewy, but at the same time soft. Its amazing, and easier to make. Watch the video to see how I made it.
Bagels are one of my favorite kind of bread for my savory breakfast. They are my go to option for days like this when I like to take a break from sweet stuff. As compared to other bread with soft and airy texture, Bagels are more compact and dense, and quite on the heavy side. A perfect filling breakfast, snack, lunch or even dinner. I personally like my Bagel double toasted with Cream Cheese, or better yet with Hummus and Poach Egg.
I had been making my own Dinner Rolls and Burger Buns, I guess it’s time for me to make my own Bagel too. I love this Bagel recipe because it’s small batch and pretty simple to make. If you love Bagels like I do, then you are going to love this one too. It also freezes well, but with Bagel this good, not to mention small batch, I don’t think you will have any problem finishing it.
The texture of this Bagel is perfection to me. The outside of the Bagel became slightly crunchy and yet soft at the same time when toasted, which is my must requirement when eating my Bagel. The inner texture is compact and dense just like a Bagel should be.
Traditional Process of Making a Bagel
The normal process of making a Bagel is by using a baking soda solution to submerge the Bagel into. Basically, a pan if filled with water with baking soda in it. After the Bagel passed the first rest period and shaped into a Bagel shape, it is then submerged or cooked for 30 seconds in the boiling baking soda solution. This process will give the Bagel a darker crust just like when making pretzels. This process also makes the texture dense and gooey. You can go with this process if you want to, but I decided to not do this in my simplified soft Bagel version.
My Simplified Version
In my version, I made the method simpler, skip the baking soda solution and aim to still get the gooey texture of a regular Bagel. I personally like my Bagel not too dense and gooey, and this is what I had in mind when I made this simplified version. Instead what I did it I mix the Bagel dough for 10 minutes, to make the bread texture tougher.Remember, the more you mix and knead the dough, the more the gluten will form, and more gluten means tougher bread. I also used Bread flour which have a higher protein than all-purpose flour, which will result to a more gooey bread texture. Then instead of giving it long time to rise like normal bread, I only left it for 15 minutes in the first rest period. That makes its basically no rise required at all. This way, the bread will not develop air bubbles inside as it will not have time to rise, resulting to a compact texture like a bagel should be, then a second rise of 30 minutes just to make it fuller a little bit. This is how I like my Bagel, and so this my take on the simplified no baking soda water version. Let’s get started!
- 1 3/4 cup Bread Flour + 2 tbsp only as needed (If you substitute this with all-purpose flour, the texture will not be the same. It will be lighter and fluffier and not compact like a regular bagel)
- 1 tbsp granulated white sugar
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 1 tsp active yeast (no need to activate as we don’t want too much rise in the Bagel. Mix directly with other dry ingredients)
- 3 tbsp unsalted butter – slightly melted (microwaved 30 seconds)
- 3/4 cup water (110F) (tap water microwaved for 20 seconds)
- 1 tsp Sesame Seed, Poppy Seed, Everything Bagel blend, or any preferred toppings
- Egg (for egg wash: separate egg yolk from egg white. Mix 1 tsp water to egg yolk and stir until combined)
Preheat your oven to 350F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat and set it aside.
Dry Ingredients: In the bowl of your stand mixer with dough attachment(or a large bowl ), place the bread flour, yeast, granulated sugar and salt. Make sure that the salt is not side by side or in direct contact with the yeast. Use a handheld whisk to combine well.
Wet Ingredients: Add alternately half of the 3/4 cup water and slightly melted butter, and mix on low-speed with the regular hook attachment for about 30 seconds. Change to dough hook and continue mixing until combined. Raise the mixer speed to medium and kneed for about 10 minutes. The dough should be smooth and elastic, but soft and slightly sticky. If the dough is too wet, add 1-2 tbsp flour.
- First Rest Period: Let sit for 15 – 30 minutes in a warm place. If you have time, you can leave it as long as 1 hour.
Shape: Take the dough out of the bowl, and form it into a ball. Divide the dough into 4 -5 pieces. Form into a ball, and using the palm of your hand, flatten the dough about 4 inches diameter. Use your thumb to create a hole in the center and work through the hole to make it larger, about 2-inch in diameter. You can use cookie cutter to create a hole, but I like doing i using my thumb to avoid any leftover dough. You can also use a cookie cutter as a guide to measure the size of the bagel.
- Second Rest Period: Let sit for 20 minutes in a warm place. You will notice that the hole in the center will almost close as it rise and bake, this is fine. You can fix it after baking.
- Egg Wash: Brush top and sides with egg wash, then sprinkle with sesame seeds, poppy seeds or powdered Parmesan cheese. Do it one at a time so that the egg wash is still wet for the toppings to stick.
- for medium size (4 pieces) – bake 18 minutes or until the top turns brown
- for large size (3 pieces) – bake 20 – 23 minutes or until the top turns brown
- The hole in the center will be almost close once the baking is done. To fix this, simply use your fingers to expand the hole again. I use chopsticks to to do this, I simply use it to circle around the hole to make it it visible again
Makes 3-5 pieces
- Bread can be made without stand mixer. Use a large bowl to mix the ingredients and manually knead the dough in a floured surface until it comes together.
- As the bread bakes and puff-up, the hole in the center will close. When you remove the bread from the oven, push down your finger in the middle to create the hole again.
- I like using only the egg yolk for the egg wash as it gives stronger brown color on top as the bagel bakes. You can also use the entire egg if you want, it will give lighter brown color but with shinier top.
Related Post: Jalapeno and Cheddar Cheese Bagel
Enjoy! If you make this, share and tag me in Instagram #SweetNSpicyLiving. I would like to see your creations too.
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