Sunday, May 18, 2008

Green Tea Bagel

Perhaps yeast and flour haven't made it to my plate yet as everytime I set out to bake with them, something totally different turned out! Your first reaction might be.... is that a donut? No wait, it looks like a bagel. Well, it was a donut when it first came out of the oven, soft and pillowy and after a few hours in the open, the texture turned to bagel like... crusty on the outside and chewy soft in the inside. Talk about phenomenon in my baking!

I want to have my cake and eat it too person, and so when I located a baked donut recipe, I was happy for the fact that I could skip the oil frying and resort to baking with greased pan only. That is the irony with baking, you feel accomplished in doing it and yet when savoring it later, the guilt set in and you wish you never made it in the first place.

All ingredients were ready to go and tweaking everything seems to be my specialty nowadays and so I set out for my green tea powder and red bean paste, hoping to create something of a Japanese Asian flair. And after a whole week sitting in its box untouched, my mixer finally found its place on the kitchen countertop and was put to use. True with its description, the mixer did its job nicely in mixing and kneading the donut dough and my hands and biceps were saved from a day of kneading. However, the rolling out and shaping of the dough did required a bit of elbow grease as the dough was pretty stretchy after 2 sessions of proofing and rising. 2 shapes were attempted, the ring with hole and complete round ones with fillings wrapped in and baked together. The green tea powder was subtle and I had to use a total of 8gm to get the right color.

Straight out of the oven, it really tasted soft like the real donut you get at those donut shops and I went on to glaze a few of the ring ones with red bean paste and sprinkled with black and white sesame seeds. Now I know why the recipe said 'eat Immediately' as a few hours past, my so called baked donut became chewy bagel. The taste was still good and I thought it will look pretty good with salmon and cream cheese and saved the unglazed ones for lunchboxes and teatime next week. It is always a good thing to bake mini versions of everything as the kids love it and munching on these bagels with sweet topping complemented by my Sunday cup of coffee and newspaper isn't a bad thing either.

Baking is a learning process and you never know until you make it. Perhaps the author of the recipe omitted something from the recipe or maybe I read the instructions wrongly. Nevertheless, I am still happy with the end result, be it a donut or bagel, as long as it is edible and fresh in taste, it is still an effort worth bragging about!

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