The Bread Baking Babes baked bagels this month and I'm baking along with them again as a buddy. Inspired by the popularity of Panera Bread's Asiago bagel, Karen of Karen's Kitchen Stories, host kitchen of the month, came up with these bagels that aren't just topped with Asiago cheese but have some inside as well for double the goodness.
The recipe is based on one by Peter Reinhart. I have total respect for the man but his bagel recipe from The Bread Baker's Apprentice is one of my bread baking failures - over-proofed, they collapsed in the water bath and never rebounded. I liked the idea of redeeming myself with this one.
I followed the recipe as written though it took me a few extra minutes of kneading by hand to incorporate the cheese. The change to Mr. Reinhart's method, refrigerating the bagels immediately after shaping instead of allowing them to proof first, gave me more control over proofing. No collapsed bagels this time!
These were fabulous, not just in flavour but in texture as well, with the chewiness you expect but with a softer, moister crumb. And I thought they looked quite good too. Barley malt syrup tinted my dough a pale caramel and also helped create that beautiful bronzed finish on the baked bagel.
Many thanks to Karen for the great recipe, one I'll definitely make again.
You'll find Karen's recipe here as well as the links to all of the other BBB's bagel posts.