The Fresh Loaf

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bagels

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Riley's picture
Riley

bagels

After two successful tries at making bagels, I now have some to half of each batch shriveling into worthless, doughy prunes.  Anyone know how to solve this flour-wasting problem. 

LindyD's picture
LindyD

Your question is really vague.


How about some details, like the flour you are using, the exact recipe and details as to when the shriveling happens.


Am guessing you are retarding them?  If so, how many hours are you keeping them in the cooler?


 


 

Riley's picture
Riley

I've been using bread flour and sometimes a mix of bread and whole wheat flours.  I'm not retarding--from machine to boil to oven.  I have used several recipes all requiring sugar, salt, flour and water.  Nothing out of the ordinary.  I have tried altering the boil time; I have been very careful about the rest stage.  My beginner's luck seems to have run out.


The recipe I have used the  most often has me putting the bagels in the oven for 5 minutes (after shaping and resting for 20 minutes) with one turn at 475 degrees.  I then boil for 5 minutes with one turn then bake for 25 minutes at 350.  The collapses occur when bagels are draining after the boil before going in for baking.  The collapses are total.  They shrivel to 1/4 their originsl size.  This morning I lost half. 

mlasser's picture
mlasser

Lindy has many good points.  You can even google for bagel recipes and I doubt you'll find anyone else having you boil after you bake. 


I use KAF Sir Lancelot which you can mail order or buy from a distributor.  It is not available retail.


If you're really dedicated, you should also buy some dense weave burlap.  After you boild the bagels, bake them bottom sides up on the bulap for 2-3 minutes and then flip them onto your stone of baking sheets for the 15-20 minute  bake.


I often get a few collapses still due to over proofing during the 12 hr retardation process so I continually reduce the amout of yeast.


Also, if you want to seed the bagels, do that right after the boil.


I don't use the ice bath as I've never seen a NY bagel place do that, but I don't think it hurts.

LindyD's picture
LindyD

I'd find another recipe.  You really need a high gluten flour if you wish to bake an authentic bagel. There's no need to add sugar.  High gluten flour, yeast, diastatic malt powder, salt, and water are all you need. 


You can use bread flour (preferably with vital wheat gluten added to increase the protein level), if  you don't have access to high gluten flour, but the trade off will be a bagel that doesn't taste as authentic as one made with high gluten flour.  I guess if one has never eaten a great bagel from NYC, the flour choice isn't all that  important (for me, it is).


After the mixing the dough, it is bulk fermented for an hour, then divided and shaped into bagels.  The bagels need to be refrigerated overnight.  Put a sheet of parchment on a baking sheet, spray it with a bit of cooking oil, place the shaped bagels on the sheet, cover it with a plastic bag, and put it in your refrigerator.


The next morning you bring a pot of water containing barley malt syrup to a boil, and boil each bagel for not more than a minute.  You then put the bagel into a ice bath for a few minutes while you boil the next couple.  When your first batch has been boiled and iced down, into a 500F oven they go for 15-18 minutes.


Not surprising your bagels collapse after being baked for five minutes, then boiled for five minutes. The dough, which wasn't allowed to fully ferment in the first place, is overcooked and the yeast probably has been killed in the process.


I'm not sure of the origin of the recipe that calls for the bake/boil/bake technique, but I think your wallet and taste buds will benefit if you toss that recipe.


Jeff Hamelman has a fabulous bagel recipe in his book "Bread."  Perhaps your library has a copy.  If so, and you follow it precisely, I guarantee you will be very pleased with the results.

Riley's picture
Riley

Thanks for the advice.  Funny that using what I use not all bagels collapse all the time--only some of them do.  Just tried another batch, used no wheat flour and had no collapses.  I do need to try a different recipe so that I can have assurance of a good outcome. 

jannrn's picture
jannrn

HOLY COW!!!! Don't just toss that recipe....BURN IT!!! I have been making bagels for about 25 years and have NEVER heard of baking then boiling then baking again!!! I don't retard them in the fridge either. When I finish mixing them and let them rest a few before forming, I then form them and let them rise covered under a cloth, for about an hour. THEN I boil them in water with a bit of Baking soda (A hint from a NY bagel maker) and about a tablespoon of sugar and tsp. of salt. When I drop one in the water, as soon as it comes back to the top of the water, I turn it over. MAYBE a minutetotal in the water. When I take them out of the water, I put them directly on a baking pan with corn meal, and when finished with boiling them all, I bake them at 475 for about 12 minutes....maybe 14 depending on how your oven works!! Anyway, you will find there are ALOT of different recipes....but that is the best way I have found to do them. Not saying the malt syrup is bad...I just have no idea about it or what it does for them. Anyway, I hope this helped a little!!! Wow...what a pain you have had!!! Good Luck!! By the way, if you need a good recipe, let me know!!

mlasser's picture
mlasser

You might try the long cold retardation and see what flavor you get.  I find a nice subtle sourness develops that you don't get if you eliminate that process.


The malt syrup is a sugar choice that I think brings great flavor and color to the bagels.

kymanne's picture
kymanne

I have been making bagels for 20 years or so and I never retard the dough. I don't think that there is one way for "authentic" bagels.  Different ways for different desired tastes and textures! The only rule I have concerning bagels is that if it ain'tboiled it is just a roll with a hole.

People try to over-think these recipes and make them much more complicated than they ever were intended to be. I mean do you think any Bubbe worried about dough retardation, or the percentage of protein in their flour? Prolly not.

For my bagels I use bakers flour, salt, yeast for the dry. For the liquid I use my boiling liquid. For the boiling liquid I use a big pot and boil 3 good sized potatoes , 2 tbs of barley syrup until the potatoes break down. I remove the potatoes , take some of the liquid and add that  to my dough.  I let it rest for 30, then shape them and let them sit on the counter for no more than 10 min. I boil them on each side for 1-2 min . After they are out of the water I put them on wire racks with a cookie sheetI underneath and let them drain. Egg wash and add toppings while on the rack and then bake till browned.

These are my Sundried tomato bagels from my business fb site

 

http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=281564928610509&set=pb.143458392421164.-2207520000.1350685845&type=1&src=http%3A%2F%2Fsphotos-g.ak.fbcdn.net%2F...

RebelBakingCompany's picture
RebelBakingCompany

Kymanne, your bagels look fantastic!!

I have never heard of the potato water method...may I ask how you thought this up? Or where you discovered it?

You also don't use sugar?

I have to ask about your pretzels...wow...gorgeous color. Did you use lye of baking soda??

Tremendous work!

kymanne's picture
kymanne

Oh, and..nope, no sugar just barley malt syrup. I only use sugar in sweet based breads. I have never had a problem so far.

kymanne's picture
kymanne

Thanks so much for that! Those pretzels I used baking soda and egg whites to stick the salt on. I came across a recipe some time ago that used potatos in the water. I tried it  and I have to admit I really liked it!  I don't put baking soda in the water because of personal preference in color. I make bagels 10x a week and don't throw out the left over boil water, I straiN it, freeze it, and use it in the next batch of bagels.

I thought those pretzels colored up really nicely for not using lye. I moved from Boston to one of the most remote places in Australia, so ,lol  lye is hard to come by! Thanks for the kind words! Xoxo