In a jug mix together the warm water and yeast. Leave for 15 minutes or until a light foam lays across the top of the water. If the foam doesn't appear your yeast may be too old, or your water too hot or cold. Tip away and try again.
In an electric mixer, fitted with a dough hook, mix the flour, salt and honey together.
Whisk the yeasted water together one last time and pour into the mixer. Mix on low for 4 or 5 minutes, until the dough has come together into one lump.
Turn up the mixer and knead for another 10 minutes or until the dough is stiff and smooth. This is a much firmer dough than say bread dough. If you're kneading by hand, good luck!
Scrape out of the bowl onto a surface lightly dusted with flour. Divide into eight equal portions and roll each piece into a ball.
Dust a couple of baking sheets with cornmeal (polenta). Next take each ball of dough and stick the handle of a wooden spoon through the centre. Carefully swing the dough around the handle to stretch the hole, and make the bagel shape. If one side is a little lumpier than the other, you can even them out with your fingers.
Stand each bagel on the cornmeal with an of inch or two of room around for them to spread.
Bring a pan of water to the boil. The water needs to be 3-4 inches deep and the wider the pan the better (I could only poach one bagel at a time, with a bigger pan you could do 3 or 4 at a time).
Pop as many bagels into the boiling water that will for without crowding them. Poach for 90 seconds on one side, flip and cook 90 seconds on the second side.
Take out of the water with a draining spoon and let sit on a cooling rack until all the bagels are poached. Sprinkle with seeds at this point if you fancy.
Preheat the oven to 240/473/gas 9.
Sprinkle 1 or 2 baking sheets with a little more cornmeal, pop the sticky bagels on top then straight into the oven.
Bake for 13-14 minutes or until they are evenly browned. Remove from the oven, and cool on a baking rack
Please enjoy my recipe! Jane | hedgecombers.com