This year I decided I wanted to bake more. I noticed that my cakes and bread making had taken a back seat over the years and I wanted to change that. Revisit old skills and pick up some new ones. I decided to start with bagels. These are one of my favourite go to snacks, suppers, breakfast breads, comfort foods. They also offer up an almost endless opportunity to adapt them and create different flavours; sweet ones, spiced ones, seeded ones or plain ones. My mind is racing with possibilities.
One of my favourites is onion bagel, I decided to go with shallots for my recipe, they have such a unique sweet flavour I couldn’t wait to try them in a bagel.
you will need;
10 shallots (a little oil for frying)
450g strong white bread flour (plus extra for kneading)
1 packet of fast action dried yeast
1 beaten egg
200ml warm water
1 egg white with a little water (for the glaze)
First of all you will need to peel and slice the shallots. Fry them in a small amount of oil, try to avoid an oil with a strong flavour such as olive oil as the flavour will come through. Fry them on a low heat until they are soft, translucent and lightly browned. Avoid them becoming crispy or dark. When done leave the pan off the heat to cool.
Sift the flour and salt together in a bowl. Add the yeast and mix.
Make a well in the centre and add the egg and warm water, mix into a dough.
Tip out onto a well floured surface and knead for at least 10 minutes. You will end up incorporating quite a bit more flour at this stage, this is normal. Put the dough back into a bowl and leave it to prove until it has doubled in size.
Turn the dough out onto a floured surface, knead for a further 2 minutes and then divide into 10. Shape them into ball, gently flatten with your hand and make a hole in the centre with your thumb. Leave them to prove again. This should take around 30mins.
After they have risen place them in a pan of simmering water and poach for 1 min either side, drain on kitchen paper. Popping bread into to water will feel odd but trust me on this.
Once they have drained place them on a lightly oiled baking tray, glaze them with the watered down egg white and bake in a preheated oven 220C for 25mins or until golden brown.
Eating these fresh from the oven made me smile ALL day.