I Heart Bagels

Yes, I know that making something as labor-intensive as bagels is very unlike me, but I do it now and then. I use this recipe from the Sunset Cookbook of Breads.

Here’s how:


  • 2 packages yeast, active dry or compressed
  • 2 cups warm potato water (water in which potatoes have been cooked) (lukewarm for compressed yeast)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 Tablespoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon sugar
  • 1/4 cup salad oil
  • About 8 cups unsifted regular all-purpose flour
  • Sugar
  • Boiling water
  • 2 egg yolks beaten with 2 Tablespoons water

Soften yeast in 1/2 cup of the potato water. Beat eggs in large bowl; blend in the yeast, remaining potato water, salt, sugar, oil, and 2 cups of flour. Stir in remaining flour to make a soft dough.

Turn out on a lightly floured board and knead for about 10 minutes, adding more flour as needed to make a firm dough. Place the dough in a greased bowl, cover lightly, and let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk.

bagels1Punch the dough down, and knead it for a few minutes on a lightly floured board until it is smooth. Roll the dough out to a rectangle, and divided into 32 pieces of equal size. Roll each piece between the palms to form a strand about 6 inches long and 3/4 inch in diameter.

bagels2Moisten the ends, and seal them together firmly to make doughnut-shaped rolls of uniform thickness. Let them rise on a board for about 15 minutes (if the rolls come unsealed during rising, reseal ends before boiling).

bagels3Dissolve 2 Tablespoons of sugar in 2 quarts of boiling water in a deep pot. Drop bagels into the water, one at a time. They will rise quickly to the surface. Do not crowd. As the bagels come to the surface, turn them over. Boil for 3 minutes on the second side.

bagels4Remove with slotted or runcible spoon and place on greased baking sheets; brush with egg yolk glaze.

bagels5Bake in a hot oven (425F) for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the crust in golden brown and crisp.

Makes 32 bagels.

They ain’t symmetrical, but they sure were good!

A WRITING PROMPT FOR YOU: A character makes a labor-intensive dish and the result is less than attractive.




I was born in Louisville, Kentucky, but now live in the woods in southern Indiana. Though I only write fiction, I love to read non-fiction. The more I learn about this world, the more fantastic I see it is.

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One thought on “I Heart Bagels

  1. Amanda Borenstadt

    February 20, 2013 at 11:03am

    I cannot wait to make bagels. I’ve never tried.

    Permalink  ⋅ Reply
    • Author

      Marian Allen

      February 20, 2013 at 11:58am

      It takes for.ev.er. including boiling the potatoes to get the potato water. Oh, but so good! 🙂

      Permalink  ⋅ Reply
  2. Jane

    February 20, 2013 at 11:29am

    Hi. Those bagels look astonishing!
    I made some once, and the mess was incredible. Many of them DID taste delicious. Love, love love bread!

    Permalink  ⋅ Reply
    • Author

      Marian Allen

      February 20, 2013 at 12:00pm

      I love bread, too! It’s one of the things Charlie and I are in perfect accord about. 🙂 The mess — Yes, it seems like every pot, pan, bowl, and surface is covered with bagels in some stage of development. Props to people who make ’em regularly!

      Permalink  ⋅ Reply

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