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BAGELS Bagel
300 ml water
25 g fresh yeast
about 800 - 900 ml fine wheat flour
50 ml turnip rape, sunflower or corn oil or melted butter
½ tsp salt
1 tbsp sugar or honey
for boiling:
water
(1 tsp salt for every 1 litre of water)
for glazing or garnish:
1 egg yolk or 50 - 100 ml sesame seeds

Place the cold water, the crumbled yeast, the flour and the oil or the melted butter in a mixing bowl of a heavy-duty tabletop mixer fitted with a dough hook. Knead for 13 minutes, add the salt and the sugar or honey and knead for another 2 minutes.

Now the dough should be smooth, elastic and non-sticky. Place the dough in a large bowl, cover tightly, either with a damp cloth or plastic wrap, and let rise until doubled in size. Punch down the dough, pour on a work surface and knead gently but thoroughly, to release as much of the gas (carbon dioxide produced by the yeast) inside it as possible. Use a little flour, if the dough seems sticky.

Bring a large pan of water to the boil (and add the salt). Reduce the heat. Divide the dough in equal-sized pieces (each weighing about 50 to 60 grams) and roll the pieces into thin ropes, about 15 centimetres long. Push the ends of the ropes together to form a ring shape.

Drop a couple of dough rings at a time in the gently simmering water. The bagels should first sink on the bottom of the pan and then float on the surface within about fifteen seconds. Check that they will not stick to the bottom of the pan. If they just remain floating atop the water, it means the dough has not been kneaded adequately, leaving too much gas inside.

Sesame bagels Remove the puffed up bagels from the water with a slotted spoon, shaking and draining them on a towel to remove excess moisture. Transfer the bagels on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper, cover with a towel and let them rise for about 10 minutes.

Either brush the bagels with egg yolk or dip them in sesame seeds, placed on a small plate, while their surface is still moist.

Bake the bagels at 225 °C for about 15 - 20 minutes or until they are lightly coloured on top. Place them on a wire rack to cool, covered with a towel. Serve while still slightly warm.
Makes about 15 bagels, depending on their size.

Recipe source: adapted from "Vesirinkelit", Elanto magazine/Hellaneuvos, 4/2001.


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