High hydration bagels

Bagel dough is typically characterized by low hydration dough, with a hydration (weight of water/weight of flour) typically hovering around 60%. This results in a dense texture that many associate with bagels, but can make the dough hard to work with.

I made a batch my traditional bagels, but boosted the hydration to 75%. Instead of the stiff dough I was accustomed to, I was faced with a sticky mass that was challenging to shape into rings without becoming misshapen.

After an overnight rest and a boil, the inconsistencies in shape became less prominent.

After baking, the bagels were not as perfectly balanced as the traditional version, but the bagels were light and crispy, and a nice change from the usual jaw workout. The crust was the most noticeable difference, perhaps more so because of the contrast with the lighter interior.

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