The Fresh Loaf

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Reusing water w/ barley malt syrup

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LindyD's picture
LindyD

Reusing water w/ barley malt syrup

Can water containing barley malt syrup that was used to boil bagels be allowed to cool, then moved to a gallon jug, refrigerated, and reused?


I make bagels about twice a month and it seems silly to dump the BMS water down the drain, presuming it doesn't lose any of its properties.


Thanks.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Rinse the clean jug with scalding water first and fill while hot with the still hot liquid. Cap and let the vacuum seal the jar.  Home canning rules apply.  Take care to prevent thermal shock under the jug while filling and cooling.  Let slowly cool on a rack or trivet.  Refrigerate?  No need if the vacuum works.  Can't guarantee any off flavors,


If you use less BMS water, there is less to throw away.  It only needs to be as deep as a bagel or am I wrong?


Mini

LindyD's picture
LindyD

Thanks, Mini.  The water depth should be a bit deeper than the bagel, but in retrospect, I've been using way more than necessary. 


Less sounds better (but not as nice as the songs of the frogs, which are debuting this evening!)

ananda's picture
ananda

Hi Lindy,


I was engaged in a long conversation with a noted UK industry expert in bread manufacture here in the UK yesterday, about a number of very interesting and diverse topics.   One of these was ...bagels!


I was on the phone so long, my baguettes nearly over-proved; see: http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/17417/dond039s-baguettes-%C3%A0039ancienne-cold-retardation


Anyway, the gentleman in question was the head judge for the baking competition I entered, and he acts as Senior Technologist for Rank Hovis [I think some of the Fresh Loafers have referenced "Granary" flour before - this is one of the Hovis proprietory brands].


He mentioned that he had visited a small Jewish bakery in London, which made bagels as a speciality.   He made this note on the boiling water.   Apparently the first few bagels out are not so good.   Only as the starch levels build up in the boiling water do the bagels become the highest quality.  I mentioned the Hamelman technique of adding malt syrup to the boil, and was surprised he had not come across this trick.   I am sure there will be a relationship between these 2 concepts, what do you think?   Anyway, he went on to say that there is an optimum point reached in terms of boiling throughput.   Once the water becomes too clouded with the starch, the bagel quality drops off.


As you may be aware, bagels are not really my subject speciality.   However the production processes are of great interest to me.   It was so good to be able to talk over such a broad sweep of issues with someone who has such a breadth of knowledge.   I thought you may like me to share some of it with you


I'm still loving those Hamelman bagels you made recently; the benchmark is clearly already very high indeed regarding the JH challenge.


All good wishes


Andy

LindyD's picture
LindyD

First, I'm glad your very nice baguettes weren't overproofed during that phone call!


I wonder what the London bagel bakery used in their water.  It couldn't have been barley malt syrup since your associate wasn't familiar with its use.


I've not noticed any difference in quality between the first bagel in and the last bagel out and wonder what he meant by that.  Taste?  Appearance?  Perhaps it's related to what is added to the water at the bakery?


I know the BMS provides some sweetness to the dough, as well as color.  Whether there's any starch residue, I can't tell since the BMS colors the water.  Boiling pregelatinizes the surface starch; what effect an abundance of starch in the water would have on the bagels is way beyond my knowledge.  More importantly, why would increased starch levels have an effect in the first place?


Any idea how long the London bagels were boiled?  The Hamelman formula calls for 45 seconds.  I know that if boiled too long, things start to go downhill.


It's probably wise to avoid reusing the BMS water, just to avoid creating any problems.  Fortunately, I was able to purchase six jars of the malt at half price, so my pantry is stocked for a while, at least.


The more I learn about baking, the more I realize I don't know.  


Thanks for sharing those relevant parts of your conversation.  Was quite kind of you to do so.

ananda's picture
ananda

Hi Lindy,


I'm sure Colin was talking only about the cosmetic effect of the shiny surface of the bagel as derived from the gelatinisation of the starch.


This is also the reason why the boiling time is so critical and therefore hotly debated.


Thanks for commenting on my baguettes and great to hear from you, as always


Best wishes


Andy