How to make just-like-the-bakery asiago bagels in your own kitchen!
If you haven’t noticed already, I really like my carbs. I like them in banana muffins and chocolate muffins. I like them in the form of a giant plate of Tuscany-inspired pasta. And I eat a LOT of pizza. But one of my absolute most favorite types of bread is the bagel. Bagels are the most delicious, buttery, toasted breakfast. I would eat a bagel every morning if I could.
I have some favorite bagel shops, but I started trying bagel recipes a couple of months ago. I wanted to see if I could make a warm, perfect bagel myself and if I could save a few bucks in the process. The answers? Yes and yes! Making bagels is 100% do-able! Yes, you can absolutely make them! The process is not highly complicated or technical; it just takes a little time!
First, you mix your dough together using simply, typical bread ingredients like yeast, salt, sugar, and bread flour (and no substitutes – you need a high protein, high gluten flour for this!) and you let your stand mixer do all the kneading work for 7 minutes. Before making bagels for the first time, I had never seen a dough like this. It will be a super stiff, tough, and dry cohesive lump. Allow to rise for about an hour and the dough will become much more pliable.
You will divide the dough into equal pieces and shape into the bagels. It’s super simple! Just make a hole in the middle and work the edges to make them somewhat even. There is no need to make them perfect – that’s part of their charm! Just make the hole about 1 inch in diameter and those bagels are going to be amazing!
You will cook the bagels in a water bath of water and honey. This is the step that is probably the most unfamiliar to people, but it is really simple – I promise! Just bring that water to simmering and plop the bagels in a couple at a time. Allow to cook for a minute on each side and then remove! Pretty simple, right? You’re doing this to help the bagels hold their shape once they’re in the oven. The boiling stage sets a crust for the bagels so they do not continue to rise in the oven. This creates the perfect chewy crust with a soft but not-too-dense interior.
Simply brush on the egg wash, sprinkle tons of cheese on top, and pop in the oven for 20 minutes! The picture above is what they looked like right before putting in the oven. Take out, allow to cool for a short time, and then try really, really hard not to eat every single one!
Time: 3 hours, 1 hour active time
Yields: 8-10 bagels
For the dough:
1 and 1/ 2 cup lukewarm water
1 Tablespoon quick-rise yeast
4 cups bread flour, separated
1 Tablespoon packed light brown sugar
2 teaspoons salt
1/4 cup asiago cheese, shredded
For the water bath:
1 and 1/2 quarts water
3 Tablespoons honey
For the topping:
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup asiago cheese, shredded
- Whisk yeast with warm water in the bowl of a stand mixer and set aside for five minutes. Add 2 cups of the flour, the brown sugar, and salt and mix with the dough hook attachment until mostly combined. Add the remaining 2 cups of flour and mix on low until all the flour has been incorporated. The dough will likely be in pieces, not one cohesive ball. Then, mix on medium speed for 6 minutes. The result will be a stiff, thick dough. Add the 1/4 cup of shredded asiago and mix for another minute. Before allowing to rise, work the dough with your hands for a couple minutes to ensure the cheese is spread throughout the dough.
- With a little oil on your hands, cover the dough ball on all sides and place back in the bowl. Cover with a kitchen towel until the dough has risen to roughly twice the original size. This will take around an hour or an hour and a half.
- On a large cutting board or a clean counter, separate the dough into 8 to 10 pieces (8 for larger bagels, 10 for smaller bagels). Poke a hole through the middle of each piece of dough and shape it to make the hole around one inch wide, while keeping the ring of dough somewhat even all around. It does not need to be perfect. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- Whisk together the 1.5 quarts of water and honey in a large pot. Place over medium-high heat and bring to simmering. Carefully transfer bagels into the water. You can cook 2 or 3 at a time, depending on the size of your pot. Allow to cook for 1 minute and flip each to cook the next side for 1 minute. Carefully remove to a wire rack.
- Once the water has dripped off the bagels and they have set up (about 2 minutes), transfer to a parchment-paper lined baking sheet and brush with egg wash. Immediately sprinkle the asiago over the bagels. Bake for around 20-22 minutes or until the bagels have darkened and the cheese looks well-toasted. Allow to cool on the sheets for 15 minutes before serving.
Adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction
If you try these, I’d love to see the result! Tag your kitchen creations with #mesacookingco so I can admire your beautiful work!
© MESA COOKING CO. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images or content without prior permission.