Though they take some preparation, these homemade bagels are as good as any from New York City, slightly crispy on the outside and with just the right amount of softness and chewiness inside. And they are made with einkorn flour so they are easier to digest than conventional wheat-based bagels.
For the 1 cup (250 g) of Yeast Levain:
- 1 cup (120 g) einkorn flour (all purpose or, 1 1/4 cups whole grain)
- 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon (130 g) warm water, about 100°F
- Pinch of active dry yeast
For the Bagels:
- 3/4 cup (177 g) warm water, at 100°F
- 2 teaspoons pure maple syrup
- 4 1/2 cups (540 g) all-purpose einkorn flour
- 2 teaspoons fine sea salt
- Olive oil, for brushing the baking sheet
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
For the Toppings:
- Sesame seeds, poppy seeds, garlic, Italian herbs, etc. (optional)
The night before, make your yeast levain. (Rests 6-8 hours)
- Mix together warm water and a pinch of yeast in a medium-sized bowl, until yeast dissolves.
- Add flour and stir until combined. Cover the bowl with plastic and leave it on the counter overnight, or for 6-8 hours.
In the morning, make your dough. (Rests 2-3 hours)
- Your levain should have bubbles on the surface. Stir in an additional 1/4 teaspoon of yeast. To the levain, add the water and maple syrup, and stir until combined.
- In a large bowl, combine the flour and salt. Add the liquid levain mixture to the flour, set aside the bowl used to hold the liquids, and stir everything together with a stiff spatula as thoroughly as you can.
- Next, get your hands in there, pushing and pressing the dough together until it’s sort of a solid, craggy mass. Turn mixture out onto a clean work surface, and knead it by hand briefly until the dough starts to feel a little sticky. If you’re feeling discouraged, take heart: this is the hardest part of the process.
- Lightly oil the bowl that previously had the liquids in it, and place the ball of dough inside. Cover tightly with plastic wrap. Let proof for 2-3 hours in a warm place or, during the winter, the closest thing to warm you have.
Shape the dough. (Rests 45 minutes)
- Brush a baking sheet lightly with olive oil. Transfer the dough to a clean work surface and divide it evenly into 10 equal pieces (a bench scraper works great here). Roll the pieces into balls and then use your thumb to push up and through the middle, pressing the dough around the sides to create a ring that resembles a bagel.
- Place the shaped dough on the prepared baking sheet and cover lightly with plastic wrap. Stretch out the plastic on the counter, brush it with oil, and then placing it oil-side-down over the baking sheet.
- Let rest 45 minutes. Meanwhile, put baking stone(s) (if you have them; if you don’t, use a baking sheet) in the oven and preheat the oven to 500°F.
Boil the dough. (Rests 30 minutes)
- Use a large stockpot to bring 2 quarts of water to a barely boiling simmer on the stove. Add the baking soda. The mixture will foam up a little and then subside. At this point, increase the heat to bring the water to a rolling boil.
- Take one of your prepared bagels and drop it in the boiling water. It should float up to the surface pretty quickly. If it doesn’t, stop everything and let the bagels proof for another 30 minutes.
- If it does rise, go ahead and start boiling your bagels. Working in batches of three at a time, give them 45 seconds on one side, then use a slotted spoon to flip them to the other side and continue to boil for 20 seconds more. Then use the same spoon to lift them out of the water and onto a cooling rack.
- Let the bagels rest for about 2 minutes, and then press them into plates of whatever toppings you like.
Bake. (Takes about 13 minutes)
- Last step! Put the shaped and boiled dough directly onto your heated baking stones. I found that using pot holders to move out the racks holding the baking stones made it easiest to put the shaped dough right on top without burning myself. Bake for 13 minutes, or until shiny and golden on top.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 10-15 minutes on cooling racks. Serve with cream cheese, or your favorite spread and toppings.
Recipe adapted from Jovial Foods.
Nutritional information below does not include optional toppings.
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 25 minutes
- Category: Bagels
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: Breakfast
Keywords: einkorn, bagel, breakfast, artisan bread