Beautiful Bagels

bagel 10

So, after a sweet dough themed Great British Bake Off last night I started looking through my recipe books and came across this recipe for Fig, Walnut & Gruyere Bagels. I’ve been meaning to try it for months but somehow the thought of poaching bagels always put me off a bit; I needn’t have worried, they were pretty easy to cook and they taste delicious! Until now my favourite flavour has always been cinnamon and raisin, but these bagels are in a class of their own. The fig flavour is sweet but subtle , the cheese gives a bit of a salty flavour and then there’s a lovely nutty crunch, mmmm.

Makes 12


  • 500g strong white bread flour
  • 1+1/2 tsp salt
  • 7g sachet fast action dried yeast
  • 75g soft dried figs, chopped
  • 250ml lukewarm water
  • 1 tablespoon runny honey
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium free range egg
  • 1 tsp Marmite
  • 1 beaten egg for glazing
  • 60g walnut pieces
  • 70g thinly sliced Gruyere


  • Combine flour, yeast, salt and chopped figs in a large bowl

bagel 1

  • In a jug, mix the water, honey, oil, 1 egg and marmite

bagel 2

  • Don’t worry about the smell, Marmite haters, the finished bagels won’t taste like Marmite
  • Add the liquid mixture to the dry mixture and combine to form a dough
  • Knead for 10 minutes

bagel 3

  • Divide the dough into 12 equal portions (mine were 76g each) and form them into smooth balls. Place them on a floured board/tray, covered with oiled cling film. Leave to rise in a warm place for at least 30mins- I had to leave mine longer because my kitchen was a bit cold.

bagel 4

  • Now to make the holes- push the handle of a wooden spoon through the centre of each ball, then make the hole larger with your fingers, it needs to be quite big as the bagels are going to expand further
  • Leave, covered, in a warm place again, for another 30mins- towards the end of this time pre-heat your oven to GM 8 (230*C)
  • Use the time to break up your cheese and walnuts into small pieces

bagel 5


  • Check your bagels, they should look a bit like this

bagel 7


  • Now fill a large frying pan or wok 2/3rds full of water and bring it to the boil
  • Poach each bagel (3 at a time) for 75 seconds, then flip it over and poach for another 75 seconds.
  • Remove with a slotted spoon, to a wire rack and leave for 5 minutes to dry out
  • Brush the top of each bagel with the beaten egg, then press into the walnuts
  • Bake, on a lined baking tray, for 10-15 mins, turning the tray after 5
  • Quickly scatter cheese over each bagel and return to the oven for 3 mins to melt it
  • Cool on a wire rack

bagel 8

  • Best eaten whilst still warm

bagel 9

For more bake-off bake-along fun try Bakers Anonymous.