This simple recipe for egg bagels comes from Mel London of The Bread Winner’s Cookbook. It takes a little bit of doing, but OOOh how wonderful it is to have salt free bagels!! (No pain, no gain.) To limit the hassle, I suggest making as many as possible at once, then freezing them for later consumption.
Yields 15 bagels.
SODIUM CONTENT: 10 mg per bagel
1 medium potato
2 c. water
2 1/4 t. dry active yeast
1 T. honey
4 c. all-purpose flour, sifted
2 eggs (1 whole, 1 separated, reserve yolk for glaze)
3 T. vegetable oil
3 quarts water
1 egg yolk (from above)
1 t. cold water
poppy or sesame seeds, if desired
Peel the potato and slice thickly. Place slices into a medium saucepan, add 2 cups water and place over high heat to boil. Once boiling, reduce heat slightly and cook until tender, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat and drain, RESERVING 1 CUP of the liquid for the dough. Set liquid aside to cool to about 90 degrees. Potato slices will not be used in the dough; discard or consume, your choice.
Proof yeast in a small bowl with 1/2 cup of the potato water and 1/2 teaspoon of the honey. Sift the flour into a large bowl. Stir the yeast mixture into the flour, along with the whole egg, egg white, the remaining 1/2 cup of potato water, remaining honey, and vegtable oil. Blend to make a firm dough. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead about 8 minutes, until dough springs back when touched. Place dough in an oiled bowl, coat top with a small amount of oil to keep it from drying out, and cover. Place bowl in a warm place and let rise until doubled in size, about 1 1/2 hours. Dough will be ready when you push down with 2 fingers and the indentations remain. If they spring back, let it rise a bit longer.
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Lightly oil a large baking sheet and set aside.
Boil the 3 quarts of water in a large pot.
Turn the dough out onto your work surface. Punch down the dough and knead 2-3 minutes. Cut dough into 15 equal portions. Roll each piece between floured hands until it is about 7 inches in length and 3/4 inch thick. Coil each length into a ring, moistening the ends with water and pressing firmly so that they stick together firmly (otherwise they will come apart when boiled). Let the rings stand about 10 minutes on an oiled board or pan.
Using a slotted spoon, slide each bagel into the pot of boiling water, being careful not to crowd them too much. They will float. Boil 2 minutes per side. Remove with the slotted spoon and place them on the oiled baking sheet. They will be very slippery.
Mix the remaining egg yolk with 1 teaspoon water and glaze each bagel with a pastry brush. Sprinkle with poppy or sesame seeds, if desired. Place sheet on middle rack in oven and bake 20-25 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from oven and place bagels on wire rack to cool. Bagels taste best the same day as baking, so if you do not plan on eating them all the same day, after cooling freeze leftovers for later consumption.