My recipe for homemade bagels

This is a recipe for homemade bagels that I have used many times with great success. The key is to age the poolish for a couple days, let the formed bagels proof in the fridge for an extended duration, and boil them in water with barley malt syrup added.


Ingredient Group (a)

  • 200 g flour
  • 200 g water

Ingredient Group (b)

  • 680 g flour
  • 340 g water
  • 30 g sugar
  • 30 g vital wheat gluten

Ingredient Group (c)

  • 8 g yeast

Ingredient Group (d)

  • 18 g salt

Ingredient Group (e)

  • 2 tbsp barley malt syrup


  1. Mix group (a) together to form the preferment.
  2. Let the preferment sit at room temperature for 12 hours.
  3. Refrigerate the preferment and let it sit for at least 48 hours. (In general, an excess amount of preferment can be prepared well in advance and periodically refreshed with additions of 1:1 flour:water.)
  4. Mix group (a) with group (b) in a large mixing bowl until just barely homogenized.
  5. Add group (c) to the mixing bowl and mix until it forms a large shaggy mess.
  6. Cover the mixing bowl and let it sit for 30 minutes.
  7. Add group (d) to the mixing bowl and mix for 1-2 minutes until roughly homogenized.
  8. Divide the dough into four quarters.
  9. Process each quarter of the dough in a food processor fitted with a plastic dough blade for 2 minutes, or until extremely soft and pliant.
  10. Split the processed dough into 16 portions.
  11. Form each portion of dough into a small ball, with a smooth surface and a tiny seam on the bottom. (See for technique reference.) Place the balls on a sheet of parchment paper.
  12. Cover the dough and wait for 20 minutes.
  13. Poke a hole in the center of each ball and progressively stretch them out to form bagel shaped rings. Note that the dough will naturally contract as it rests.
  14. Place the rings of dough on sheet pans with parchment paper beneath them and cover them with plastic wrap.
  15. Refrigerate the dough for at least 24 and up to 72 hours. (Do not worry if the seal is imperfect and the tops of the bagels begin to form a skin after drying out.)
  16. Preheat the oven to 450ยฐF.
  17. Bring a small pot of water to a boil and mix in group (e).
  18. Boil each bagel for at least 1 minute, flipping each one after 30 seconds and returning them upright to the sheet pan afterward. (Boiling multiple bagels is okay, as well as going well over 1 minute.)
  19. Bake the bagels for 20 minutes.


October 20th, 2022 | Posted in Cooking

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