Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Cinnamon Sugar Bagels with Pecan Honey Cream Cheese

Happy 2013!  As with the start of every new year comes the promise of hope, change, and a brighter tomorrow.  This year I decided to treat Mr. TL, baby P, and myself to a decadent breakfast of homemade bagels.

This recipe was brought to my attention by a friend who promised they'd be easy to make and even easier to enjoy.  She and this recipe did not disappoint.

Certainly time consuming, this recipe was simple enough to follow and yielded a bagel that was dense and chewy and rivaled any bake shop bagel in our area.  The nice thing about this recipe is that you can make whatever kind of bagel you'd like to just by changing up the toppings.  I made cinnamon sugar bagels and served them with a pecan honey cream cheese (also crazy easy and I'll include the recipe!) but I have plans to make a garlic sesame bagel with pepper chive cream cheese next.  Yum yum yum!

I followed the recipe from All Recipes almost exactly but I did omit the honey in the boiling step and I didn't notice a need for it.  I also made 8 bagels instead of 6 like the recipe calls for (you could probably even stretch this to 10 or 12 to serve on a brunch type spread).  Another note from a friend - do not toast these delicious doughy spheres of joy.  Slice them in half, lightly butter them, and toss onto your griddle pan for 2-3 mins until the butter gets all warm and the bagel gets toasty.  Ye sit makes it more rich with the addition of a smear of butter but it's better than lighting your toaster on fire from the cinnamon and sugar dripping onto the grates.  Pick your poison, people.


Cinnamon Sugar Bagels with Pecan Honey Cream Cheese
(adapted from All Recipes)

For the Bagels:
1 1/4 cups water
4 1/2 cups bread flour
3 tablespoons white sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tablespoon instant yeast
4 quarts water

For the Cinnamon Sugar Topping:
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon

Combine 1 1/4 cup water, flour, sugar, 1 teaspoon salt, vegetable oil, and yeast in the mixing bowl of a stand mixer. Mix on low speed using the dough hook until well-developed, about 8-10 minutes. To ensure the gluten has developed fully, cut off a walnut-sized piece of dough. Flour your fingers, and then stretch the dough: if it tears immediately, the dough needs more kneading. Fully developed dough should form a thin translucent "windowpane."

Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl, cover it with plastic wrap and a kitchen towel, and let rise for 2 hours.

Punch the dough down, place it on a lightly floured work surface, and use a knife or dough scraper to divide the dough into 8 pieces. Roll each piece of dough into a sausage shape about 6 inches long. Join the ends to form a circle. Repeat with the remaining dough, and let the bagels rest for 15 minutes.

Preheat oven to 475 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Mix your cinnamon and sugar together in a shallow bowl.

Bring 4 quarts water to a boil in a large pot. Boil the bagels, 2-4 at a time, until they rise to the surface of the pot, about 1 minute per side. Remove the bagels with a slotted spoon and dip the tops of the wet bagels into the cinnamon sugar topping.  Arrange them, topping side up, on the baking sheet. Bake in the preheated oven until the bagels begin to brown, 12-15 minutes.

Pecan Honey Cream Cheese

8 oz block of cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup finely chopped pecans
1 tablespoon honey
2 tablespoons brown sugar

Combine cream cheese, pecans, honey, and brown sugar in a mixing bowl.  Whip with an electric mixer until combined.  Chill until serving.

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