2012/10/16

You've come a long way, baby... (TWD BWJ: Bagels)

Bagels.

My first exposure to bagels was that ubiquitous sleeve of bagels bearing the name "Lenders". Blueberry, please.

They were a bit of an oddity in our neck of the woods during those days. (Think rural Upstate NY - early 80's)

I almost think my parents started getting them when my brother-in-law came to visit. He grew up just outside of Philadelphia and they were slightly less exotic fare down there.

I would eat my little Lenders bagel toasted. With butter. Sometimes with cream cheese.

I thought they were da' bomb.

You don't know what you don't know, right?


Later in life, I would go away to college - near a large city. And get a taste of what a bagel could be.

Since then, I have sampled many different bagels in many different places - my favorite ones were in Montreal.

When my youngest daughter was born, I used to call her "Bagel".

I can't remember exactly why. I think it had something to do with how round and fat her head was those first few days of her life - and that it just kind of sat there.

If I were to mention that today, she would roll her eyes as far up as possible. And shake her head at me. (She does that a lot). She's very tolerant of her mother - we have a bit of a sympatico going, her and I. As long I don't embarrass her in public, we're all good.

Life should always be so simple, right?


When I started getting into bread-making, bagels were one of the earliest projects that were tackled. I could barely eke out a loaf of bread, but I was bound and determined to make bagels.

Somehow, passably decent bagels were managed - it was a King Arthur Flour recipe. Back in those days, I was terrified of using bread recipes from any other source.

I am not scared like that these days.

This week's project was fairly uneventful.

Which was a good thing, because The Dude and his brother were replacing the downstairs toilet while I was making these.

That. Was. Not. Uneventful.

Three trips to Home Depot were involved.

I am not allowed to talk about it - mentioning it brings me dirtly looks.

Sigh.


I pretty much followed the recipe "as is" - except I added non-diastatic malt powder to the cooking water (for the color). Half of the bagels went poppy seed - the other half employed a combination of poppy seed and large-flaked salt. I boiled the second set of bagels for a slightly less period of time than called for in the recipe and was happier with their outcome.

The Runner Girl was home from college for the weekend (happy dance) and ate three - so I would say that means this was a successful venture. (Or at least better than college food...).

This post participates in Tuesdays with Dorie. The recipe for bagels can be found at the site of this week's host: Heather at Heather’s Bytes.

35 comments:

  1. Bakery-perfect! I love them with poppy.

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  2. Mmmmm. I AM A BAGEL FANATIC. Anxious to try this recipe and test it against the formula that i've tweaked into my model of perfection.

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  3. This post is hilarious between the simpatico and the toilet! Great looking bagels Cher, glad you all liked them. Have a great day!

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  4. Hooray! Glad that these were a success and the Runner Girl liked them. Now, about that loo ...

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  5. We had college boy home for the weekend, too...and he took some bagels back to the dorm! Perfectly done. Hope your toilet is fully functional now ;)

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  6. Cher, your bagels look wonderful! How nice that your daughter came home for a visit and enjoyed these delicious looking bagels.

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  7. Looking good!! and from the response they got.. they obviously tasted even better!! for someone who hardly gets bagels here in India..I really want to try the Montreal ones.. after the way everyone has been ravng about them!!

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  8. Glad it was a baking success! Never tried a Montreal bagel before. How different does it taste from the New York ones?

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    1. They are a little sweeter and somewhat less chewy. But put one of either in my hand and I am happy...

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  9. Lender's.. oh the memories! Great post as usual!

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  10. Great post :) And your bagels look good..

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  11. I love the way those poppyseed bagels look. I just might try that next time! I admit, I'm not a very discerning bagel-eater. I just know that I like what I like! I liked this recipe, but I'd like to give some others a try. The King Arthur Flour actually looks like a decent place to start . . . :)

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  12. They look great. I'm looking forward to trying some poppy seed ones.

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  13. Oh, I remember Lender's quite well. Egg bagel topped with cream cheese was breakfast most mornings through college. Bagels and soft pretzels were the early obsessions in my bread-baking beginnings. One-bowl-easy-stir banana bread as a first project? Phsst! Go right for the hard core stuff. We're sympatico on that account. :)

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  14. LOL! I LOVE that someone else has had a not-uneventful toilet replacement project! The last time, my husband ended up calling a plumber (a first in all our DIY years). But what a joy the new ones are. That's all I'm allowed to say too.

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  15. Your bagels turned out great! I think I need to get myself to Montreal though to check out some bakeries. Who Knew?

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  16. Those bagels look perfect. Poppyseed bagels are my favorite!
    The Dude will probably appreciate than my husband proposes that Home Depot should give discounts for return visits for the same project on the same day. What do you think?

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  17. How did you get so many poppy seeds on your bagels?! I made a mess on my kitchen floor and had to sweep up poppy and sesame seeds! I think I got more on the floor than I did the bagels. The color of your bagels is beautiful and they look perfect. I think my husband would agree with Betsy's about discounts for return visits. Mine made four trips today and he was definitely out of sorts about it.

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  18. Hooray for children visiting their parents, a successful baking venture- although you sound like the pro already, and an installed toilet no matter the amount of time to replace it. Life is GOOD!

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  19. Yay for well done and happily received bagels!

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  20. Malt powder sounds so interesting. They look great! Also,life should always be simple!

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  21. Living an hour from NYC all my life, bagels were part of my growing up..I regularly enjoyed great bagels. So I was quite surprised at how great these bagels were! Yours look perfectly done! Nice that runner girl got to enjoy them with you!

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  22. I wish I had one of your bagels right now! I've never made bagels before but I do make soft pretzels which are very similar. Your bagels look delicious!
    Renee - Kudos Kitchen

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  23. Wow- gorgeous bagels Cher- you crack me up with the 'Lenders Bagels' memories! They were such a pale comparison to the real deal but we toasted them up for breakfast -guess ignorance was bliss is this case?! Anyway, now you've graduated to homemade bagels;-)

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  24. Your bagels look great. I too love the Montreal variety. If ony I had access to them more regularly!

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  25. Cher you never cease to amaze me with all your exploits in the kitchen. Your bagels look FANTASTIC. Well done.

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  26. Your stories and posts always brighten my morning. LOVE your bagels. I should've stretched mine a little more. Now all I want is one of yours with a cup of coffee:)xx

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  27. I love your stories. You are a wonderful writer. Oh, and my favorite bagels were in Montreal too.

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  28. These bagels are perfect my friend and teamed with your stories, make for a perfect morning :D

    Cheers
    Choc Chip Uru

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  29. I love your stories!! I totally feel you. If I brought up an eventful house project to my husb, he would give me the coldest shoulder. chills.....

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  30. looks like the bagels were in the jacuzzi too! I'll be doing these as a make-up. what type of flour did you use? I'm thinking I need to use bread or add a little vital wheat gluten to get that chewy bagel texture that I like.

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  31. Since these were my first bagels I ever tasted and made,... in the future when I look back, I'll think of you all each time I'll have a bagel ♥
    Cher, you baked up beautiful poppy bagels and it's so gratifying when our children appeciate our efforts with "homemade" :-)

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