Bagels From Scratch





Introduction: Bagels From Scratch

These Montreal style bagels are surprisingly easy to make and even though they aren't quite as good as authentic Montreal bagels* they're much better than grocery store bagels.

1-1/2 C Water, warm
5 Tbsp Sugar
1 Packet Yeast (2-1/4 tsp dry yeast)
3 Tbsp Oil
1 Tbsp Malt Powder or Syrup (op) [edit: shilohjim says "Look for a homebrew supply shop for your malt powder and syrup.")
1 Egg
~4-1/2 C Bread Flour (or All-Purpose)

Boiling Liquid:
4 L Water
1/4 C Honey

poppy seeds, sesame seeds, onion flakes, cinnamon and raisins

*If you have a wood fired oven you might come closer than I did. Barbecue might work...let me know if you figure something out.

Step 1: Prepare Dough

In a large bowl dissolve:
1-1/2 C warm water
1  packet of yeast
3 Tbsp sugar

2 Tbsp sugar
3 Tbsp oil
1 Tbsp malt (op)
1 egg

Gradually stir in:
~3 C bread flour

Remove from bowl to floured surface and knead for 10 minutes incorporating more flour as needed.

Step 2: Let Rest

Place dough in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Rest in a warm place for 10 minutes.

Step 3: Form Rings

Punch down dough and divide into 12 equal pieces. Roll each piece into a 10" rope and form into a circle with the ends overlapping by 3/4 of an inch. To seal roll the joint under your palm with your fingers in through the hole. Place the bagels on a pan that has been lightly oiled or covered with a floured dish towel.

Alternatively form each piece of dough into a ball and poke a hole in the middle with your finger. Use your fingers to gently stretch the hole to the proper size.

Step 4: Rest Again

Cover with plastic wrap and rest in a warm place for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile bring 4 litres of water and 1/4 cup of honey to boil in a large pan or dutch oven.  And set the oven to 425F.

Step 5: Boil

Place bagels in simmering water a few at a time (I was able to fit 3 at once) and cook 45 seconds on each side. Remove from water with a slotted spoon and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

Step 6: Bake

Sprinkle bagels with poppy or sesame seeds, or some other flavouring, on both sides. Bake at 425F for 20 minutes. If desired flip after 10 minutes to brown both sides. After baking transfer to a wire cooling rack.

Step 7: Tips and Tricks

Cinnamon Raisin
Add cinnamon with flour and add raisins at end of kneading step.

Freeze bagels and reheat in the toaster.

Make ahead
Freeze dough rings. To prepare thaw overnight, and bring to room temperature on counter, boil and bake as usual.

Keep kneaded dough ball in fridge up to one day.



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    Just a quick question. I have been looking for malt powder and my wife suggested using ovaltine classic malt mix. I do not think that this is the same thing as it is a beverage mix. Is this a reasonable substitute? Thanks.

    there is a second step most people miss, and thats broiling for four minutes, this is important if you want authentic bagels. Also I form the dough into balls and pinch the hole in them with my thumb and index finger, then rotate them to enlarge the hole.

    Why aren't these as good as authentic Montreal bagels? Did you have to substitute or leave out some rare ingredient? Is some of the required equipment prohibitively expensive? Or are you one of those people who believes that there's some unique magnetic force in certain parts of the world that realigns food molecules to make it impossible to replicate their flavor at home?

    4 replies

    the only reason they arent as good as Montreal bagels is bc they wernt made in Montreal. and yes there are special food particles that make food taste better in certain parts of the world

    Montreal Style bagel secret ingredient just happen to be food grade lye. Sadly this is not the kind of product you can easely buy at your local store. Changing drasticly the PH will give while cooking that Montreal quite unique crust and taste. I have myself tried to change the PH with some baking soda which is to me a step closer but nothing yet as good as the bagel I get from from a Montreal bagel shop.

    I thought that was the secret to pretzels.

    All of the above. I left out malt because I couldn't be bothered to find it (now that I know the recipe is a keeper I'll probably look for some), I didn't use a wood fired oven, and a brisk 15 minute walk in -20C to pick up breakfast probably adds something intangible to the experience as well.

    Hummmm it is very nice, but it is not what i'm searching from a while

    please tell me, this seems to me like the recipe of german Bretzels, How do you modify this to make a salty  instead of sweet  pretzel?

    Nice Ible :)

    I've been on a pastry class and I live in Montréal... We used to do some bagels and they were quite awesome (i liked more the bagels made in class than the St-Viateur bagels's)

    Here is the recipe for a good batch (lol), feel free to adjust to your needs

    10kg of bread flour (or "Farine Forte")
    500g of "Améliorant Puratos N.Y. Bagel"

    7 Liters of water (26 degrees celsius)
    Fresh Yeast
    add to the flour and mix until it give a good dough, as firm as the fermented one

    Add 3kg off  "fermented dough"

    Mix on slow (speed 1) 3 minutes

    Divide the dough and make dougnuts, boil with malt or honey

    Cook at 220 celcius with vapor until it is almost blond.

    Random fact: if you fry a bagel vegetable oil it tastes just like a doughnut.

    Mine JUST came out of the oven.  There amazing thank you very much for the recipe.

    Look for a homebrew supply shop for your malt powder and syrup.

    2 replies

    if you feel adventurous you can get barley let it germinate then dry, crush and boil it down in hot water. that's all malt is. I may look into making an instuctable for this.

    How common an ingredient is it? Most of the U-Brews around here focus pretty exclusively on wine.

    Is the title picture your own? I think the 2nd picture in step 6 looks much more appetising! I clicked the link expecting to find a load of pictures from google, not your own.

    Neat ible :D

    4 replies

    I think that image is his own - right-click on the images, check the properties, and the 1st & last images are consistent with the rest.

    I believe, therefore, that he simply did a proper "product shot" with the most attractive of his bagels.

    Ahhh yes, appologies. I can see now that the first and second images are the same bagel from different angles, which would be hard to find on google :p

    In which case... Nice pictures as well as nice ible! :D

    Thanks for the comment Jayefuu. I did take that picture (that's how realistically bagelly the bagels look) and went through all the trouble of getting a white background, lol. The whole point is the handmade bagels, the last thing I want is a cover that picture that looks canned. I'll work on getting a more 'homemade' picture.

    They just look tooooo good! :D

    cool, could you elaborate on the ingredient malt.  like where you're most likely to find it and what else it might be used for...(might make it easier to find).  thanks