Sourdough, sourdough, sourdough, oh yea, sourdough!

Blueberry Man Bait..and..Plain Sourdough Bagels

When my daughters were of “that” age, they made a terrific blueberry dessert called, “Blueberry Boy Bait.” It was really good even if you were not a boy downing some bait. For this to make any sense, you have to read further…

Well, I was asked to make some plain bagels by a family member and I thought it would be fun to also make a few with some added walnuts and blueberries, two of my favorite flavors. I only had some frozen blueberries, so I thought I would try them, maybe thawed.

My friend Mike of Sourdough Home, warned me that frozen blueberries would be better than thawed ones. I hoped he was right, but it turned out we were both wrong. The frozen blueberries instantly began to thaw in the dough and made wet pockets. The thawed blueberries did the same, got the dough gooey.

I could not shape the dough into bagels, it was actually a mess. I also added walnuts and the walnuts I had were covered with a glaze of cinnamon sugar mix. I chopped them and added them as well, but the sugar in them also made the dough gooey… another mess.

I was able to form three walnut bagels using just chopped walnuts, but the remainder of the ruined bagel dough (five bagels in all), I ended up chopping up and placing in an oiled glass baking dish. I added more blueberries and walnuts and then drizzled honey and 3 tablespoons of melted butter over all. I am calling it Blueberry Man Bait. Anyway, now I have 13 (a bakers dozen) plain bagels left with three of them having walnuts.

Blueberry Man Bait – not yet baked:

The actual bagel dough turned out really well. If I had dried cranberries, dried blueberries, raisins, regular walnuts etc, I could have added them to the plain dough to make a variety of bagels. As it is, the person requesting plain bagels, gets his hearts desire. He doesn’t even like sesame seeds or poppy seeds on top! Yikes!

One Day Plain Sourdough Bagels:

4 lb 2 oz dough @ 60.6% hydration

The night before baking, make sure you feed your starter plenty because you will need 20 oz of starter @ 100% hydration.

  • 20 oz/567g starter @ 100% hydration
  • 14 oz/396g warm water
  • .5 oz/14g oil
  • .8 oz/122g malt syrup
  • .7 oz/19g salt
  • 1 lb 14 oz/850g Bread Flour (high protein bread flour)

Starting early in the morning add the above ingredients together in the order shown. Mix well until you have a stiff dough and knead it for three minutes. Let your dough set for 30 minutes and then knead it some more for another 5 minutes. Let the dough proof in a covered bowl for five hours. Fold the dough three times in spaced intervals during the five hours.

Scale your dough to whatever size bagels you like. I scaled to 3.5 oz sized bagels and obtained 18 bagels. After you have weighed and cut your dough, roll it into rounds and let the dough set for 15 minutes. Then shape your bagels into their final form by poking your finger into the middle of the round dough piece and pulling and twirling it outwards to open up the hole in the middle.

Now let your dough proof for about 1.5 – 2 hours more. Preheat your oven to 400F with the baking stone. You can forgo the baking stone, but I feel the heat of the stone adds to the oven spring of the bagels.

Then in a large skillet bring about 2-3 inches of water to a boil(around 3 quarts), adding 1 Tablespoon of Malt Syrup and 1 Tablespoon of salt to the water.

When water mixture is gently simmering, carefully drop in two or three bagels at a time, simmer gently for one half minute on each side (add more water to the boiling mixture when necessary).Remove with a slotted spoon and place on a greased baking sheet.

As soon as the baking sheet is filled with bagels that have been simmered, brush on an egg glaze (made with one beaten egg + 1 Tablespoon water), and sprinkle with favorite topping (toasted dried onion flakes, poppy seeds, sesame seeds, etc).

My family member wanted them PLAIN. If you don’t want a topping you will still want to use the egg glaze as it will make the bagel shiny. Bake the bagels in a 400F/204C degree oven for about 20 -22 minutes or nicely browned. Turn baking sheet halfway through the bake for even browning.

The Plain(but really good) Bagels:

The Walnut Bagels:

With butter:  (yes! I ate this and I loved it! Walnuts in bagels are great!)

The Blueberry Man Bait:

I baked this for 22 minutes at 400F

This would be great to make anytime you have some extra dough kicking around. I used about 1 lb of dough, chopped into chunks (a soft sourcream or sweet dough would work better than a bagel dough with this recipe). I placed the dough chunks into an oiled baking dish and then stirred in and sprinkled, chopped sugared walnuts(plain walnuts work well too) and frozen thawed blueberries.

Drizzle as much honey over all as you would like and then pour over the whole mess, three Tablespoons of melted butter. You could also just sprinkle a cinnamon/sugar mixture instead of honey. You could also use cranberries, raisins or whatever you would like instead of blueberries. I think blackberry or raspberry preserves would work good too.

Now just to get creative, think of a Breakfast Man Bait…. dough chunks, with fried onions, chunks of cheese, bacon or sausage, jalapeño peppers, etc etc… your creativity is the limit.

Remember ladies, the way to a man’s heart is through his…. bread basket…

Oh yea, or with some great bagels. Have fun baking everyone! I know I do….


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  1. Erika Erika
    May 4, 2011    

    Great bagels! They have a wonderful flavor. Mine were a little bit dense–not too bad, though. Any suggestions for next time?

    Thanks for posting that recipe!

    • northwestsourdough northwestsourdough
      May 4, 2011    

      Hi Erika, many bagel recipe are lower than 60% hydration, since mine are higher, I would say you need to final proof longer or make sure your initial starter is vigorous. How long did you final proof? Mine usually take 1.5 to 2 hours.

  2. Nhut Tran Nhut Tran
    June 24, 2012    

    I am beginner…But Congratulations you’ve made succeed to your blueberries man bait!
    Would you please help me out. When you mean use 1 cup bread flour and 1 cup water for feeding the starter. Is that the same cup you use or use liquid measuring cup for water and dry measure cup for flour.

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  1. Breakfast and Lunch Pockets, Foldovers..Whatever… | Discovering Sourdough on April 8, 2011 at 5:09 pm
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