Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Back to Bagels

So most of you know that if you hear about me making bread, chances are it's the weekly (or twice-monthly, depending) offering for my mom's workplace snacks and lunches that's going into the oven. I pride myself on being able to come up with one unique combination of flavours after another, without much advance notice. Of course, it helps when you have a pantry stocked to the gills like mine is, but even with the very basic elements of flour, water, salt, yeast and maybe a touch of sugar and a dash of spice it's more than possible to churn out a batch of bread in as little as two or three hours!

Of course, if you want to get fancy with your doughs, all bets are off. You can take that lightning-fast, incredibly simple 4 ingredient loaf and add fruit, vegetables, nuts or seeds to it. You can stretch the fermentation period out, mess with the flours, enrich the mixture with egg and fat or simply change the shape of the final baked good. If you're feeling particularly frisky in your ventures, you can even bring a big pot of boiling honey water to the party and make one of my favourite kinds if bread - a Montrealer style bagel.

This recipe has some fun new goodies in it that I was fortunate enough to win from a Foodie Blogroll contest, too: dried cherries and tart cherry concentrate courtesy of Michelle's Miracle®. I also kneaded in ground almonds, minced pecans and a crushed All Bran cereal bar. Boiled up and baked in a hot oven, they're perfectly dense, filling and wholesome rings fit for breakfast. Wonder what else will be on the YeastSpotting table this week at WildYeast?

Very - Cherry Crunch Bagels
Makes 10 bagels
1/3 cup pecan halves
1 All-Bran "Honey Nut" Bar, broken
1/4 cup ground almonds
1 tbsp instant yeast
2 tbsp sugar
2 cups flour
2 cups whole wheat bread flour
1 tbsp gluten flour
1/2 cup warm water
1/2 cup warmed (1%) milk
1/4 cup tart cherry juice concentrate (like Michelle’s Miracle®)
1 egg
2 tbsp honey
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup dried cherries, soaked in hot water and drained
1 tbsp honey (for boiling)
  1. In a food processor, combine pecan halves, All-Bran bar and ground almonds. Process until pecans and All-Bran bar are ground to a coarse, mealy texture.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine yeast, sugar, flour, whole wheat bread flour and gluten flour, whisking to incorporate everything.
  3. Add warm water, warm milk and tart cherry juice concentrate and begin mixing on low speed.
  4. After about a minute, add egg, honey and salt. Continue kneading for 15 minutes, until the dough is very elastic.
  5. Cover the bowl and allow to rest 45 minutes.
  6. Turn onto a floured board and knead in the ground nut mixture and dried cherries by hand.
  7. Re-cover and allow to rest 15 minutes.
  8. Bring a large pot of water to a boil with the honey, and preheat the oven to 375F.
  9. Divide dough into 10 even balls and shape each into a ring.
  10. Place the bagels, two at a time, into the boiling water for 2 minutes per side.
  11. Drain well, and place on lined baking sheets.
  12. Bake for 30 minutes and cool on a rack.
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 298.7
Total Fat: 5.4 g
Cholesterol: 21.9 mg
Sodium: 35.3 mg
Total Carbs: 54.3 g
Dietary Fiber: 5.0 g
Protein: 9.8 g


  1. sounds yummy i may have a go. xo

  2. Wow, what a great way to use the cherry products! Thanks for sharing!

  3. Sounds awesome! Love the bagels ... but we're on English Muffins right now, seeing as they're so much easier!

  4. I'm going to start experimenting with bagel dough, since one of my bread books says it makes excellent cherry concentrate, though it does sound really good here =P


Thanks for the feedback!