egg bagels

For illustration purposes, I used photos from a conglomeration of bagel baking episodes. 
Check the captions for bagel type identification.

I’ve been on a bit of a bagel bender. I made some for us to eat, and then I made a couple batches for the soiree, and now I’m back to making them just for us again. No one’s complaining.

wheat gluten

As per my custom, I used my no-fail recipe for sourdough bagels, but then I decided to try egg bagels. Egg bagels are my absolute favorite (or everything egg bagels, to be precise): sunshine yellow and tender soft, with a most deliciously satisfying chewiness.

after rising overnight: plain bagels, barely puffed

So I found a recipe for egg bagels that called for eight yolks, which — lucky me! — was exactly the amount of yolks I had leftover after making Italian meringue buttercream. And lo and behold, a pattern emerged: make buttercream and then, a couple days later, make egg bagels. What a happy and fortuitous sequence of events! 

plain bagel on the left; egg bagel on the right
plain on left; egg on right

The texture was right, but my egg bagels’ color wasn’t even close to the bright yellow of the local bagel shop’s egg bagels. Which made me wonder: do bagel shops dye their egg bagels? So when I swung by our local bagel shop to pick up several containers of cream cheese for the soiree, I asked the woman behind the counter pointblank: Do you dye your egg bagels?

Yes, she said, startling me with her frankness. (And then I asked if they use the whole egg or just the yolks, and she said the whole eggs.)

everything plain

So my non-yellow bagels with eight yolks are authentic after all!

everything egg

(Though now my kids are begging me to dye my dough yellow so the bagels look like the ones from the bagel shop, ha.)

everything egg

Egg Bagels 
Adapted from Michelle of the Brown Eyed Baker.

This is a tough tough dough, so to keep from murdering my mixer, I finish the kneading by hand. It’s a killer workout, and I can never quite work in the last two to four ounces of flour, but it’s better than burning up my mixer’s motor.

The addition of yolks make these bagels puff so high the hole disappears.

Costco sells everything seasoning, which is perfect for these bagels. My favorite way to eat an everything egg bagel: toasted, spread with lots of cream cheese and topped with a slice of salty ham.

13½ ounces sourdough starter
8 ounces cool water
8 egg yolks
¼ cup sugar
2 teaspoons yeast
1 tablespoon salt
2 tablespoons barley malt syrup, plus extra for the boiling water
6 tablespoons powdered milk
4-6 tablespoons wheat gluten
2 pounds bread flour
everything seasoning, optional

Day One
Measure everything, but the flour and everything seasoning, into the bowl of a stand mixer and mix on medium speed for a few minutes. (Or, if you rather, mix by hand.) Once it’s well-mixed, begin adding the flour (that you’ve premeasured into another bowl), bit by bit, until it becomes too stiff for the mixer.

Turn the dough out on the counter and knead by hand, working in as much of the flour as possible. The dough will be soft and smooth and not one bit sticky.

Cover the dough with plastic and let rest for 10-20 minutes. From this point on, refrain from adding any more flour.

Divide into 16 pieces. Roll each piece into a rope that’s 8-10 inches long. Twist the rope around your hand, with the two ends overlapping in your palm. Pressing your palm to the counter, roll the two ends until they stick together.

Line a tray with parchment paper and sprinkle with cornmeal. Place the bagels on the tray, leaving about an inch of space between each bagel — they will only rise a little. Cover the tray with plastic, or stick the whole thing inside a garbage bag, and transfer to the fridge to proof for 12-24 hours.

Day Two
Remove the bagels from the fridge and let rest at room temperature, uncovered, for 20 minutes. Fill a large, wide kettle with 3-4 inches of water and bring to a boil. Add a scoop (one to two tablespoons) of barley malt syrup. Place a baking stone in the oven (if using) and preheat to 400 degrees.

When everything is to temperature — the water boiling, the oven hot, the bagels no longer chilly — slip three to four bagels into the boiling water, bottom side down (the bottoms are textured because of the cornmeal), and cook for 40-50 seconds. Flip the bagels and boil for another 40-50 seconds.

While the bagels are boiling, take the baking stone from the oven and sprinkle with cornmeal. With a slotted spoon, lift a bagel from the water and flip — so the original cornmeal-y bottom side is once again on the bottom — onto the baking stone. Repeat with the other bagels.

Boil another batch. Once the baking stone is full, slip it into the oven. After 15 minutes, increase the heat to 425 degrees and bake for another 5 minutes before removing from the oven and transferring the bagels to a cooling rack. Repeat the process with the remaining bagels.

For everything bagels: sprinkle everything seasoning on the baking stone along with the cornmeal. Immediately after removing the bagels from the boiling water, sprinkle them liberally with everything seasoning.

This same time, years previous: sour cream coffee cake, apple dumplings, 2015 garden stats and notes, chatty time, posing for candy, why I’m spacey.

One Comment

  • mommychef

    I wish you could try Montreal bagels. Super chewy, no puff, a little sweet. There's really nothing else like them. They have to be baked in a wood burning oven so it's pretty hard to pull off domestically. Actually, even commercially because of fire regulations in many areas. They are two iconic shops in Montreal – St Viateur and Fairmont. St Viateur's are the best but wars have been fought over it. My kids call the one's you make "Tim Horton bagels" (coffee shop chain) and have a strong preference for them because they are easier to chew (braces and missing front teeth etc). I call them Ontario bagels because they are basically all you can get once you leave Quebec. When you come to visit (or when I come to help with the donuts, I will bring- haha!) and you'll have to try a "Montreal bagel".

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