I’m not going to lie to you. These homemade bagels are a process. There is yeast involved. Rising, waiting, kneading, boiling, brushing, baking. With all that said, they are still worth it. Why? Because there is nothing, NOTHING like a fresh bagel warm out of the oven, especially if there is cheese involved.
I made these bagels with cheese and garlic. You could get creative and put anything in them. Blueberries. Cinnamon and Raisin. Plain. Whatever you like. As for me and my family, we like garlic and cheddar.
4 cups all-purpose flour
2 (.25 ounce) packages active dry yeast
1 1/2 cups warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
3 tablespoons white sugar
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon white sugar
6 cloves minced garlic (must be fresh)
3/4 cup of grated cheddar cheese (or any other cheese of your choice)
In large bowl, combine 1-1/2 cups flour and yeast. Mix water, 3 tablespoons sugar and salt together, and add to the dry ingredients. Beat with a mixer for half a minute at a low speed, scraping the sides of the bowl clean. Beat at a higher speed for 3 minutes. Then, by hand, mix in the rest of the flour until you have a moderately stiff dough.
Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic (8-10 minutes). About halfway through your kneading, add the cheddar and the garlic (or whatever) to the mixture, and continue. Place into a greased bowl, cover, let rest for 15 minutes.
Cut into 12 portions, shape into smooth balls.
Poke a hole in the center with your finger, and gently enlarge the hole while working the bagel into a uniform shape.
Cover, let rise in a warm place (I preheat my oven to 200°, then I turn it off, and let the dough rise in there) for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, start a gallon of water boiling. Put 1 tablespoon of sugar in it, mix it around a bit. Reduce to simmering.
When the bagels are ready, put 3 or 4 bagels into the water, and cook 7 minutes, turning once halfway through.
Drain them on a plate with paper towels. Place on a baking sheet, either lined with parchment paper or greased. I like to add some salt and garlic powder onto the parchment paper before putting the bagels on top of the baking sheet, I also do an egg wash (1 egg + a couple tablespoons of milk) and brush it over the tops of the bagels. Then I top them with a little more cheddar, and some parmesan cheese as well.
Bake at 375 degrees for 30 to 35 minutes. Remove from oven, eat hot or cold.