The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

county fair award winning bagels

verminiusrex's picture

county fair award winning bagels

I got Champion for my basil & chives bagels! Only got red ribbons for my white, wheat and challah, but did get a blue for my spelt loaf. The winning bagels were basil & chives. If you have a chance to enter a county fair, do so. The ribbons give you great bragging rights. 

*edited because it was champion, not grand champion, my bad.


jcking's picture

By any chance where did this affair take place Brother Baker?


verminiusrex's picture

Lawrence, Ks. but just about any county has a county fair, just punch it into Google.

mrfrost's picture


What brand and type of flour do you use for your bagels?


verminiusrex's picture

High gluten flour, I don't think the brand matters too much. I used to get it at Sam's Club for $15/50lb bag, since they stopped carrying it i now pay $45/50lb bag at the local health food store but at least it's organic. I just found a restaurant supply store that may carry it for a reasonable price and will be checking it out later this month. 

saraugie's picture

Formulas please?

Was there  bialy entry?

verminiusrex's picture

The bagels were entered under a class that was essentially "not bread loaves", this is copied directly from the booklet.

Specialty Baked Products (i.e. bagels, baklava, brioches, unfilled cream
puffs, crumpets, English muffins, popovers, scones)

 I think this was a way to say "other" and keep it separate from the quick breads. I think they added in bagels after I won last year. 

My recipe is modified from BBA, but was tweaked so you can make fresh bagels in about 4 hours because I don't do overnight proofing. I made literally thousands when I sold them at farmer's market for 2 seasons. I think it's the flax meal that gives it a flavor much like that special flavor a preferment or overnight proof gives the bread we so love to make. 

2 lbs high gluten flour

4 teaspoons flax meal

1 Tablespoon barley malt powder or syrup

1 Tablespoon kosher salt

2 teaspoons yeast

(for herbs, 1 teaspoon per lb of flour is usual, so for this years winner 2 teaspoons dried basil and dried chives. Last year's reserve champion recipe was rosemary onion, 2 teaspoons dried rosemary and about a tablespoon onion flakes)

1/4 cup olive oil

17 oz water

Mix together dry ingredients, add wet and knead with dough hook about 4-6 minutes. Proof 90 minutes to 2 hours, divide into twelve 4 oz balls and roughly form, cover and let rest 20 minutes. Form into tight balls like mini boule loaves, le rest 20 minutes. Poke a hole in the middle with a wooden spoon handle, let rest one minute, the stretch out the hole and boil 1 minute on a side in water. Bake on parchment paper for 24 minutes at 425 degrees. 

The bagels can also be made larger following the exact same recipe. I just made a half dozen 8 oz bagels for my sister, and I used to make an occasional giant bagel the size of a bunt cake that was about 24 oz. The recipe would make two of those. 

Moots's picture

I know what you mean about the validation. I just learned my multi-grain sourdough won 1st place in our county's Bob's Red Mill home baked bread contest and my sourdough got a 3rd in its category! I will toast your success tonight, also, verminiusrex! (Sorry about the bad pun.)



verminiusrex's picture

Good job on the sourdough, I played around with a starter and did a couple loaves but decided that branch of our baking hobby just wasn't for me. I'm already planning for next year, and I haven't even brought my ribbon home yet (we do that on Sunday, my daughter got some ribbons but did better on her quilts than her baking this year). 

Postal Grunt's picture
Postal Grunt

If I recall correctly, this is at least your second year in a row. Give me a break in Tonganoxie, please.

verminiusrex's picture

Yep, last year I got the pink reserve champion ribbon, so I upgraded to champion purple! (I accidentally called it grand champion in my original post, my bad. There are so many different classes and ribbons that it's hard to keep track).  I need to build that shrine for my growing ribbon collection, and also put the autographed picture of Alton Brown next to it. 

breadsong's picture

Beautiful baking - congratulations - your basil & chive bagels sound fabulous!
:^) from breadsong

verminiusrex's picture

Thank you. It was apparently the herbs that really won the judges over. No clue what herb combo I should do for next year. 

wassisname's picture

Congratulations!  Nice work, and nice variety.  Love those county fairs!  Ours is at the end of the month and I already have the breads picked out.


verminiusrex's picture

I had chosen several breads to enter, but it was so hot here (over 100 degrees about every day, hottest summer recorded in Kansas history) that my dough was proofing twice as fast and the white and wheat deflated when slashed. My rye preferment actually frothed over its' container because of the heat (never seen it do that before, and I did it in a pitcher with plenty of room) but luckily I had a spelt preferment too, which got the blue ribbon when my white, wheat and challah only got reds. Now my pride is slightly wounded and I have to see if I can improve my basic white bread.