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TO MAKE THE FERMENTED DOUGH:
Mix the fermented dough ingredients in a bowl, cover and leave to ferment for at least two hours. The dough will be quite dry, do not worry and don’t add more water.
TO MAKE THE BAGEL DOUGH:
Mix together the fermented dough with the rest of the bagel ingredients. When everything comes together into a dough tip it out onto the work surface and knead the dough for around 10 minutes until smooth and elastic.
Put the dough back into the bowl, cover with a cloth and leave to rest for 20-30 minutes.
When the dough has had time to rest, tip it out onto the work surface and divide into six portions.
To shape your bagels form each portion of dough into a ball then, using the end of a wooden spoon, push a hole into the centre of each ball of dough and wiggle the wooden spoon around to make the holes a little bigger.
Lay the bagels on a tray lined with baking paper. Cover with a cloth and leave to prove for an hour.
After about an hour, pre-heat your oven to 240°C and bring a large pan of water to the boil.
Using tongs or a slotted spoon, plunge the bagels into the boiling water for 30 seconds then turn them over for another 30 seconds then remove them from the boiling water.
Dip the top of each bagel into a bowl of seeds and place them seed-side up on the baking tray.
Put the tray(s) in the oven for about 10 minutes if you like them chewy, and leave them baking for a further three minutes if you like them crunchier. The bagels should be shiny and evenly brown all over.
Cool your bagels on a wire rack then ENJOY with some smoked salmon and eggs like I did.
Bagels can be frozen when fully baked – wrap them in greaseproof paper or put them in an airtight container.