And she was right- they are a pain in the ass to make. Mixing them up was fine, and I really liked letting the mixer knead the dough. Shaping them was fine and fun (I made some heart shaped ones for TCB’s birthday on Sunday.) What was a pain in the ass was the boiling.
For the first few, the water wasn’t hot enough (near boiling, the recipe said), and they turned out fairly flat. Near the end of the batch, I got a rhythm going with boiling them and figured out what I was looking for before flipping them over, and I think that set turned out nicely. The egg wash gave them a shiny, browned appearance and I think that, if I make them again, I’ll use parchment paper to prevent so much of the bagel sticking to the tray.
I read in On Food and Cooking (McGee) that traditional bagels (like I made) are boiled before baking to give them a harder crust, and that now, many bagels are steamed instead, to give a softer crust. I might try that next time, too, just for comparison.