I was so hoping that the story would have a happy ending but it was not to be. Look at those poor misshapen things. I did try I took them out of the frig this morning trying to maintain an optimistic attitude I felt the bagels were trying to look good. You know, making an effort.
I started the water boiling, dropped them in three at a time. They floated beautifully. Of course they did. They were essentially gloppy sponges. Talk about doughy.
I was undaunted. A little baking and they’ll be fine. Have you noticed how optimistic I was? Looking on the bright side. Showing no fear. Oh yes, I’m proud of that.
I finished boiling, fishing them out and dressing them up with sesame seeds. It should have been clear that there was no salvaging these lumps but I wasn’t giving up. I had my rose-colored glasses firmly on.
Into a nicely pre-heated oven they went. I shouldn’t have wasted the electricity. When I opened the oven to rotate the pans I beheld wildly puffed up bagelesque things. A brief surge of delight! I had saved them after all.
I checked their temperature after 40 minutes and they were about 190 so I figured they must be done. I pulled them out and they actually looked kind of bagelish. But as soon as I poked a finger at them the horrible truth became clear. They were a mess. They had puffed up enormously but probably just a result of some weird steam thing trapped in the ridiculous over-abundance of gluten. As they started cooling they collapsed completely into heaps of ugly, weird, chewy hunks of hot dough. I even thought, because I can’t really stop being optimistic, “maybe they’ll taste good.” What a dope. I tried “breaking off” a piece to taste. The things were so touch and glutionous it was really, really hard to tear them. Kind of like rubber. Yum…right? They actually sort of tasted okay (but I think that was mostly the sesame seeds and salt).
After staring at them for an hour or so I finally had to face the horrible truth. It was a hopeless disaaster. I threw them away and started working on my brioche. Okay, bagels, you’ve won this round. But we’ll meet again my little friend. Oh yes. We’ll meet again.
For those who like a blow by blow:
Boiling bagels. Maybe it should have been oil instead of water. That would have taught them a lesson.
Masquerading as actual bagels. I feel so betrayed.
Okay, I give up.
P.S. I decided to perservere. I think I know what went wrong…maybe. And I just can’t let it go. So there’s another bagel sponge a-bubbling on the counter. Round 2 coming up!
To see the result of the rematch check this post: Bagels Redux – Who’s Laughing Now?