Saturday, February 7, 2009

Quick, Before They See Me!

I'm taking advantage of my obviously worsening ADD symptoms (that seem to have emerged as the school year progresses) to write this note, even though I still have a rediculous amount of reports to finish this week. I can say, however, that thank God my Purchasing presentation assignment is over. That was sheer Hell - no thanks to having to deal with a partner in that venture! Really, is it too much to ask that, after you slave away to put together a detailed report and conclusion, that your partner actually read your material and use it in the simple PowerPoint they create?? Or at least know a little bit about the actual topic when you stand up in front of the class so that we don't look like idiots?? I mean, come on... I know that you may not like public speaking, but that doesn't change reality. Professional life demands it - cope already!

Deep breath, Sarah... in, out... whew. Okay.

Haha... okay, apparently that "breath" I took was actually a 15 minute lapse where I wandered around my house, brushed my teeth, re-pinned my hair and changed into my PJs... I did mention that I swear I have ADD, right?

I think that's probably why I like to bake bread so much... I can throw together the dough in about 15 minutes with my mixer, then cover it up and get all nice and distracted for an hour or so before the handy buzz-timer calls me back. I could actually kill for a timer like this one, maybe then I'd actually get more stuff done in a day!

5 minutes later... Aaand, I'm back again. Sigh. So yes, bread. More specifically, bagels again. I've gotten into the habit of doing a weekly batch for my mom to take to work - she's almost always open to the flavour combinations I come up with, and as a bonus it gives me an outlet for my overabundance of creatinve energy. Funny, thing, that creative energy. It never seems to translate into actual energy! Ah well.

So this week's baking tally actually consisted of three types of bagels, simply because I had a tad bit of extra time on my hands (read: I was avoiding homework!) and a whack of languishing ingredients in my cupboard. Two dozen of the chewy rings were on the fruity side of the spectrum and found their way into my mom's lunchbox. The remaining ten were all for Andrew, though - I know what he likes in terms of bready-ness (or at least I like to think I know what he likes!) so today when we went to see the OHL game I got him tickets for this past Christmas I gave him a bag of Cheddar - Jalapeno bagels. Whenever we went to the Great Canadian Bagel out in Ottawa, that was the type he'd favour, with either Zesty Cheddar or Jalapeno cream cheese spread on it. Me - well, I preferred the good old plain-jane sourdough bagels, but Zesty Cheddar cream cheese all the way!

So, take a look at these first bagels - do they look poppy-seeded? That's what my mom thought too, but those crunchies are way better than poppy seeds! I broke out the chia seed to top these babies, which I thought would be a perfectly nutty compliment to the dough's flavour - banana! The bread part is subtly sweet and fruity, not really "banana bready" but you know that's the fruit inside. My mom topped these with honey all week... but I would bet my bottom dollar that peanut butter (or, to keep with this week's events - Nutella!) would be equaly awesome! I got the maltose at my local Asian grocery, use honey or leave it out if you can't find it or don't want to buy another ingredient!

Banana - Crunch Bagels
Makes 12
2 cups flour
2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup rolled oats
1 tbsp gluten flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp ground flaxseed
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp nutmeg
1 pkg instant yeast
1 1/3 cups warm water
2 medium bananas, chopped
1 tbsp maltose (optional, for boiling water)
1/4 cup chia seeds (for topping)
  1. Combine flour, whole wheat flour, oats, gluten flour, salt, flaxseed, sugar, nutmeg and yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook.
  2. With the mixer running on low, add half the water.
  3. Add banana chunks, then remaining water.
  4. Increase the speed to medium and knead with the mixer 6-7 minutes.
  5. Transfer to a clean, lightly greased bowl. Cover and let rest 30 minutes.
  6. Turn dough onto a greased countertop and divide into 12 balls. Let rest 5 minutes.
  7. Shape each ball into a ring and place onto greased (or parchment-lined) cookie sheets, 6 rings to a sheet.
  8. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest 1 hour, until doubled.
  9. Preheat oven to 375F.
  10. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add the maltose.
  11. Boil bagels, two at a time, for thirty seconds each side. Remove with a slotted spoon and place back on (re)greased sheets.
  12. Sprinkle with chia seeds.
  13. Bake 35-40 minutes, until golden brown and hollow-sounding when tapped.
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 206.5
Total Fat: 2.4 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 36.5 mg
Total Carbs: 41.4 g
Dietary Fiber: 5.7 g
Protein: 7.3 g

I got the cheese powder for these at the local Bulk Barn - it's about the same amount as is in one of the "Mac n' Cheese" box mixes.

Cheddar - Jalapeno Bagels
Makes 10
1/2 cup warm water
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 pkg active dry yeast
3/4 cup warmed 1% milk
3 tbsp jalapeno pepper slices
3 cups flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 tbsp gluten flour
1/4 cup "macaroni and cheese" style cheddar cheese powder (I get mine at bulk barn)
1/4 tsp salt
2 tbsp maple syrup or honey (for boiling)
  1. Pour 1/2 cup warm water into a large bowl (preferably in a standing mixer fitted with a dough hook).
  2. Add the syrup and yeast and let stand 10 minutes, until foamy.
  3. Combine the milk and jalapeno slices and add to above mixture.
  4. Whisk together flours, gluten, cheese powder and salt in a separate bowl.
  5. With the mixer running, begin adding the dry ingredients to the wet mixture about 1/4 cup at a time.
  6. Knead with the mixer 5-7 minutes. Finished dough will be very stiff.
  7. Place into a greased bowl, turn to grease the top and cover. Allow to rise 2 hours.
  8. Deflate the dough, divide into 10 pieces and allow to rest another 5 minutes.
  9. Shape each dough portion into a ring shape and place on greased or parchment-lined sheets. Cover and let rise 40 minutes.
  10. Preheat the oven to 375F and bring a large pot of water to a boil and add syrup.
  11. Place the risen bagels, two at a time, into the boiling water mixture and cook 30 seconds each side.
  12. Drain well and place back on greased or lined sheets.
  13. Bake bagels 30 minutes, until crusty, and cool on wire racks.
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 219.7
Total Fat: 3.2 g
Cholesterol: 3.7 mg
Sodium: 110.8 mg
Total Carbs: 40.7 g
Dietary Fiber: 2.9 g
Protein: 8.5 g

If you're wondering about these last bagels - they're Strawberry-Kiwi flavoured. I used pureed strawberries (previously frozen from this past summer) and dried kiwi pieces, with some pureed tofu for body, but I didn't measure any of the additions (not to mention the whole flour / liquid ratio is way off - the dough was incredibly sticky) so I can't tell you what I actually did! I'm going to work on this one, though... they did bake rather nicely and had a great flavour!
I'm passing along these bagels to YeastSpotting over at WildYeast - seems to be my new "go-to" event these days!

5 comments :

Maggie said...

The banana ones sound so good and I just broke down and ordered some chia seeds online since I couldn't find them anywhere. Good luck with all the reports!

Alisa - Frugal Foodie said...

I have always wanted to make bagels but still have never done it. These look soooo good though!

Ricki said...

I'd never think to put banana or jalapeno in a bagel--but they look great! The poppyseed ones are perfect.

Bellini Valli said...

Bagels always remind me of Montreal. I love the cheese ones the best but I will take any of your renditions of this perfect food:D

Susan/Wild Yeast said...

Some very imaginative flavors here!