500g/1lb 2oz strong white bread flour
2 tsp dried yeast
2 tsp clear honey
1 egg, beaten
300ml/1⁄2pt warm water
a little vegetable oil, for greasing
plate sesame seeds
plate poppy seeds
Mix the flour, yeast, honey and beaten egg together with a pinch of salt, then gradually mix in the warm water until a dough forms. The usual rules apply – if too stiff, add more water; if too runny, add a bit of flour. Use a plastic scraper to do this, it blends things better and stops you getting into a mess.
Knead the dough for a good 5 mins, then cover and leave to prove in a plastic covered bowl for 1 hr or until doubled in size. Line 2-3 baking trays with baking parchment and brush each with a little oil. Turn out the dough and knock back, then divide into 12 equal pieces. Now it’s time to make the bagels.
Take a portion of the dough and roll into a ball about the size of a golf ball. Poke a hole in the middle with a wooden spoon handle. Wiggle it and roll it around a little to smooth into a bagel shape. Place on the lined baking tray. Repeat with remaining dough and set the bagels spaced apart so they have room to grow. Cover with cling film and leave to prove for about 45 mins.
Heat oven to 230C/fan 210C/gas 8. Get ready a large pan of boiling water. Poach the bagels, two at a time, for about 30 secs on one side, then 30 secs on the other. While they are still wet, dip 6 on one side only in sesame seeds and the other 6 in poppy seeds. Put them back on the oiled paper and bake for about 10-12 mins. I like my bagels chewy so I would err more on the side of 10 mins.
Leave to cool, then split and fill with smoked salmon and horseradish crème fraîche. Oh heaven!