The Easiest Way to Turn an Ordinary Bagel Into a Bagel With Everything

We’ve all been there. It’s one of two weekend mornings and you decide to buy a dozen bagels with everything, only to come back with a smaller variety of seeds because they were sold out. Or worse, they only have plains. (At times like these, I even reconsider buying bagels.) Instead of resigning yourself to eating bagels you don’t like, turn simple bagels into any seeded variety you want in five minutes.

I have a very expressive face, and the bagel shop employees must have seen my pain play on it the last time they told me they were out of everything. “Give me two minutes and I will cook it for you,” said the kind angel croissant. As a professional baker who has made a lot of bagels in his time, I found this to be gibberish, so obviously I said yes, and he did it! He entered the kitchen with two simple bagels and left with two items. And you can too.

Unless the dough is flavored, all seeded bagels start the same way—no additives. When making bagels, seeding is the very last step before the bagels jump into the oven. The seeds stick a little to the residual moisture after the dough has been boiled, but for extra seed protection and a shiny surface, many bagels are lightly rinsed in egg white. The thin layer of egg white is tasteless and cooks and dries for a few minutes in a hot oven. This means you can seed and coat the bagels after the fact without overcooking the bagels. In fact, if you were going to toast your bagel anyway, you are now multitasking.

Unpack the usual bagels from the store and place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment. Preheat oven to 350°F. Use the oven if you’re dealing with a lot of bagels, and use a toaster (or deep fryer set to “Bake”) if you’re only working with one or two. Depending on how many bagels you’re spreading, pour about one cup of all the bagel seasoning into a bowl wide enough to hold the dipping bagel. (Of course, use whatever topping you like: poppy seeds, garlic chips , dried onion, or sesame seeds. It’s your party.)

In a smaller bowl, add one egg white and beat lightly to loosen. Using a pastry brush or similar, brush the bagel with the egg mixture. Wherever you put the egg white, the seeds will stick. If you want it all the way, flip the damn thing over and clean the bottom. Dip the bagel into the seasoning bowl. Tilt and turn the bagel into seeds to cover as desired. Place the bagel on a baking sheet and bake for three to five minutes to prepare the egg mixture and toast the filling. Enjoy the bagel you like hot out of the oven.


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