The differentiating element in their preparation is a brief scalding in boiling water prior to baking. They should be eaten as soon after they cool as possible, as after only a few hours they become dry and heavy. They do freeze extremely well, however, and can be reheated from frozen by 10 minutes in a moderate oven.
Serve them with the classic combination of smoked salmon (known in Yiddish as fox) and cream cheese or with cream cheese and chopped onion. A scrape of cream cheese on its own is called a schmir.
Put the milk and hand-hot water in the bowl of an electric mixer with the salt, sugar and yeast. Turn on the dough-hook at low speed and pour in the flour, whites of the
Remove to a floured surface and knead briefly, then roll into a ball. Put in an oiled bowl, cover the top with clingfilm and leave to rise at room temperature for 2 hours.
Knock the dough down, then divide it into
Put a large pan of water to boil and preheat the oven to 220°C/425°F/gas 7. Working 2 at a time, put the bagels into the boiling water for 20 seconds, then transfer them to a lightly oiled baking tray. Glaze the tops with the egg yolks beaten with
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