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Chewy, flavourful bagels


For the dough:

500g Shipton Mill strong bread flour

14g fresh yeast

1 and 1/2 teaspoons of salt

Tablespoon of date syrup (could also use honey or malt syrup)

250g lukewarm water

Poppyseeds (or any other topping - e.g. sesame, 'everthing' seasoning etc)

For boiling:

1 teaspoon of bicarb

1 litre of boiling water

Adapted from James Morton's recipe in Brilliant Bread.


1. Activate the yeast with a sprinkle of sugar in a measuring cup. Use back of a spoon to mix together until liquidy and starting to bubble (takes about 30 seconds). Then add the lukewarm water and date syrup. Stir together.

2. In the mixer bowl, add flour and salt. Pour in yeast mixture and combine with mixer - should be a very dry dough.

3. Knead with dough hook for approx 10 min until formed into a ball. Should be very stretchy.

4. Cover bowl with a damp tea towel. Put it in the fridge overnight for max 12 hours. It should double in size.

5. Now rested, turn the dough out on to a lightly floured surface. Roll into a long sausage shape and divide into 12 lumps.

6. Shaping the bagels - roll out a lump of dough with a rolling pin. Then fold lengthways into a long shape and roll into a smooth baguette shape. Then join the two ends by crossing them over and roll backwards and forwards on your surface to seal the seam. This technique helps build a really chewy texture for the bagel.

7. Transfer each bagel onto a baking tray lined with parchment paper and leave to prove for approx 40 min. Cover with a teatowel.

8. When nearly proved, fill a pot with boiling water and add bicard for extra chewiness. Preheat the oven to 240 degrees celcius. Set up beside your pot of water, a tray of seeds.

9. Boil each bagel for 1 minute on each side. Once done, place in seeds and then transfer back to the baking tray, seed side down. I was able to boil four bagels at once which worked well.

10. Pop in the oven for 15 minutes.

All done! Let me know how you get on.