Week 9: Cheesy bagels

Today I was finally ready to try adding cheese to the bagels. I asked the resident-lover-of-cheese, Son Two, which bagel recipe I should use as my base, and he picked the plain one.

I think this weekend’s other batch of bagels will incorporate onions with a shallot topping — or maybe Fox Point with onion topping. But I don’t have to decide that now; after all, tomorrow is another day.

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At 10:10am I started the bread machine cycle, and at 11:40 I was shaping bagels. This time I made ten instead of eight bagels. I turned on the burner to heat the boil water, then covered the bagels for their second rise.

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Only one of the bagels “unrolled” in the boil this time, but when I put it on the baking sheet I positioned it so that it might rejoin again in the oven. (We’ll see.)

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After administering an egg-white wash, I sprinkled half of the bagels with shredded Asiago cheese and left the rest plain. The bagels baked for 30 minutes. The plain bagels got a nice “tan and toasty” look to their tops, and the Asiago bagels looked and smelled enticing.

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The combination of baking bagels and preparing pasta and sauce for a big group of kids (I think the technical term is a “passel”) brought the compliments out, for which I was grateful. But they came from our guests rather than from the residents:

“What’s that?”
“That smells great!”

I even got a “thank you” after letting a boy serve himself rotini, sauce, and shredded mozzarella.

What did I hear from my kids?

“Oh, yeah,” said Son Three offhandedly. “Mom cooks.”

After one cheese bagel and one plain bagel disappeared, I put the two smallest plain bagels aside for one of my tasters; the second taster can text me with her preference. Of course, tomorrow I plan to try making onion bagels, so she’ll have more options.

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