Monday, February 25, 2013

Green Monster Bagels

This recipe is from Vegan Sandwiches Save The Day by Tamasin Noyes and Celine Steen.

Recipe: see page 178 of Vegan Sandwiches Save the Day.
I made bagels! I've never tried making them before so I'm rather impressed with myself. I didn't realize they are rather simple.

There was a bagel place across the street from my old place and every morning there would be a line of people waiting to get in. Once I got in the door, it was always very humid. The way it was designed, I could see into the kitchen.  There were giant rotating racks that held hundreds of bagels, and I could see the rows and rows of gas jets from the oven. And there was always lots of steam. It seemed so industrial. That's why people were lined up out the door. It was far too complicated to try making something like this at home.

Turns out, not so. These were easy. This recipe on page 178 is for Green Monster Bread, then if you flip over to page 20, there are additional instructions for turning the dough into bagels or sandwich rolls.

The flour has a little bit of vital wheat gluten added to it, which is what gives it stretchiness, and the difference between the bread and the bagels is that the bagels get poached for a bit in a bath of water and baking soda. That's what gives bagels their chewy exterior. It also makes them taste like fresh pretzels. My place smelled like pretzels all day long.

The spinach gives them a light green color on the inside, but I don't think I could taste it. As they bake, the outside turns to an earthy, shiny brown. I was very fascinated with this recipe. I actually pulled up a chair to the oven and watched them bake through the window on the door.

Fresh, they were outstanding. They had that wonderful pretzel smell and taste and they were very chewy. I kept the extras in airtight containers and had them over the next few days, but they weren't as good. The pretzel flavor and the chewiness were gone after 48 hours. Next time I might try storing them in the fridge or freezer.

Ingredients: spinach (or baby arugula), garlic, olive oil, water, all-purpose flour, vital wheat gluten, instant yeast, sugar, salt, canola oil, cooking spray, baking soda.