Saturday, August 20, 2011

Savory Smackerel: Daily Bread

Hope ya'll have enjoyed some of the ways to implement your garden crop and farmer's stand produce. I must say I might be in mourning that the summahtime produce is nearing the end. :( Right now, butternut squash just isn't exciting me as much as the abundance of tomatoes we've enjoyed. If you would like to give one last fun tomato recipe a whirl, be sure to check out Musing Foodie's fried green tomato endeavor and tutorial.

Now, we're moving on to a year round food item--bread. Who can ever get enough of it? Talk about comfort at it's finest. Unfortunately for my hips, anytime I am in a "changing" season in my life (ie the week of my wedding, the weeks after my brother's death, 1st trimester morning sickness) know, anything that tends to get the stomach rumbling....bread is one of the only thing I find that settles the ole tum tum.

For awhile, I've heard some of my friends talk alllll about their bread machines. I'll admit I didn't sink my teeth right away because I didn't want to succumb to the pressure of having "another thing to keep up with" or another thing on the list "to do."

I happened to be browsing Craigslist about 3 weeks ago and found a good bread machine for $25. I figured I'd give it a whirl and see if I'd really use it. That way, we wouldn't be at much of a loss if I didn't. I had to see for myself but, boy, have I been missing out! If I knew then what I know now, I totally would've registered for one for my wedding, requested grains and flour in place of baked ziti after my brother's death, and lived on bread alone for my 1st trimesters (who needs Zofran?)!

Report: I haven't bought any bread items in 3 weeks (even including burger/dog buns and pizza dough) so we've more than made up for that $25 and I've found you don't eat nearly as much bread when it is full of good, hearty ingredients opposed to preservatives and air. Not to mention, it makes your house smell A-Mazing! It is sooooo worth it.

Hence, our new Savory Smackerel series~ Daily Bread! We are going to explore some fabulous ways to get the most outta those bread machines. First up: Onion Bagels.

I heart onion bagels. Never in a million years did I imagine I would ever bake my own bagels but it was so easy. This was the second thing I did in my bread machine and they are Di-Vine! Move over, Bruegger's, Panera and Einstein. HPS has your number! Try them and let me know what you think.

Onion Bagels (adapted from

  • 1 cup of water, warm
  • 4 tablespoons of butter, melted and cooled
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups of white whole wheat bread flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons yeast
To finish:
  • 1 oz. sugar
  • yolk of 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1/4 cup of onions, sauteed (I probably used more like 1/2 cup)

  • Put the ingredients in the order listed above into your bread machine baking pan.
  • Set the program to dough.
  • When the cycle has finished, transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and divide into 8 equal sized pieces.
  • Shape each piece into a sausage shape with tapered ends measuring about 9 inches in length.
  • Working with a piece at a time, join the ends together to make a circle.
  • Then pinch them gently to seal them.
  • Place the circles on a lightly oiled cookie sheet, leaving enough room between them for each to rise.
  • Cover the circles with a clean dish towel and leave them to rise for about 20 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 400 .
  • Finely chop enough onion to make a 1/4 cup. Saute in a bit of butter.
  • Put the onions aside.
  • Bring a large pan of water to boil.
  • Add the sugar and stir the water until the sugar is dissolved.
  • Place 2 bagels in the boiling water and let them cook for about 30 seconds on each side.
  • Continue until all bagels have been in the water for a total of 1 minute.
  • Turn them with a slotted spoon.
  • Lift each bagel out of the water, gently shaking it as you do so to remove as much water as possible.
  • Return the bagels to the baking tray.
  • Beat the egg yolk with the water, then brush this mixture over each of the bagels.
  • Sprinkle the sauted onions over the bagels.
  • Bake the bagels in the oven at 400 degrees for 15 minutes or until they are golden.
  • Transfer the bagels to a wire rack and leave them to cool.

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