The #smugcouple, Kneading for Naught: Bagels

12 Feb

In 2014, HoM and Clementine decided they would become master bakers. This journey involves a lot of studying (successful loaves of chewy artisan loaves require an understanding of yeast and “bread percentages”) and a lot of kneading for naught.

The experiment began with a very dense Vienna Loaf. We had forgotten to activate the yeast.

This weekend, in our leisure time (which we seem to have LOTS of), we shook off the humiliation of the failed Vienna Loaf and took on Montreal bagels. We know, enthusiasts of the smaller, denser, sweeter cousins of New York bagels are skeptical of our skill. We were scared too.

The recipe was acquired from a cooking class held at House Household China & Gifts (Waterloo, ON), the #smugcouple attended in January. Their Executive Chef Derek Hines (to whom HoM affectionately and reverently refers to as “D-Rock” … in whispers … not in his presence), walked us through several bread recipes. After one bite of those bagels, we knew would have to put what we learned into practice.

Bagels are not especially difficult and they don’t require any special/ strange ingredients except malt powder (malt syrup also acceptable). They don’t require 2 days of your time or a stand mixer that requires a second mortgage on your home. You need patience (to knead the dough) and bravery (to trust that an initially shaggy dough will come together in the end).

It’s the perfect place to start a bread making master course.


These bagels were boiled in honey water. We COVERED them with “everything” and a classic combo of poppy and sesame seeds.

The result? A chewy centre, a lightly sweet flavour, and a gorgeous dark crust. Paired with cream cheese and homemade gravlax, it was the breakfast of (armchair Olympic) champions.


We think we can declare open warfare on Rose Levy Berenbaum. *gauntlet dropped*


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: