The Struggle of Making Bagels


My father and I are always fond of different kinds of bread. I think that’s why he fully supports me in this endeavor of mine. He loves hard and/or chewy bread which are hard to come by or are expensive here in the Philippines.

I often spend my idle time watching videos and reading books. Most of them are about food or art and sometimes how things are made! I’ve stumbled upon multiple bread videos and one struck me the most before.

I didn’t know that bagels were boiled before they were baked!

My father recently got me the mixer of all bakers’ dreams (I’ll tell you more about that soon) and decided to make bagels as a form of thank you and to experiment with the mixer.

I often send my food buddies progress photos of what I’m doing for fun. They come straight from my phone’s camera and sometimes straight from my Instagram Stories or the Messenger app. So pardon my photos but these are as real as they can get!

With the new mixer, making dough is a hell lotta easier than before! It literally is a game changer. I created strands and gluten bonds that I’ve never seen before.

The process with Making Bagels is this:

1. Make the dough

2. Let it rise

3. Form the bagels

4. Let it rise again

5. Boil

6. Bake

You see, making bread requires a lot of time. And I’m someone that hates waiting and making mistakes. I knew the former would be inevitable so I try to be strict with myself and dodge the latter more.

When I proofed the formed bagels, The bagel holes closed in!! I guess I didn’t make the whole big enough so that when it proofed, a whole still remained. What I did was to just punch every bagel with my finger again to create a hole.

It punched the air out of the bagels but I guess picking up the bagels to boil them would get rid of the air either way. That was one of my problems. I was so afraid of getting my bagels out of my tray and into the pot. I knew it was going to be a disaster. I didn’t understand how other bakers would do it to create perfectly rounded and smooth bagels.

I panicked so much that I ended up just laughing at myself while transferring every single bagel into the boiling water. They turned out fine, I guess.

Note: I added honey to my boiling water because when I tasted the raw dough, it tasted salty. I thought it could help counteract the saltiness and it did!

Another note: I also added Malunggay leaves to the last two doughs of bagels when I was forming them for experimentation hehe

When I pulled them out of the water, they smelled like siopao or any kind of bread soaked in water. It made me panic more than it should but I shrugged it off and went on to brushing them with egg whites and baking. After a few minutes in the oven, they started smelling like bread!

They did not turn out to be the most beautiful and perfect bagels but their texture sure was!! Smooth, glossy and a bit crispy on the outside and soft and chewy in the inside!

Not too bad for a first try right?! It tasted absolutely lovely with cream cheese too!

As for the recipe, I followed three recipes I watched over Youtube. Mainly from SORTED and the others were from Chef John of Food Wishes and Laura Vitale! If I perfect it, I am sure to share my recipe here!


2 thoughts on “The Struggle of Making Bagels

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