Recently I’ve had a couple of interviews where I’ve been asked about how I got started baking. It’s been fun to reflect on the journey I’ve been taking with food over my life and I thought I’d share a little with you! I grew up loving food, but it wasn’t until we moved to Japan that my love turned from just eating to creating. I love meat, carbs and sweets (my three food groups) and Japan isn’t big on baked goods. In fact almost no one even owns an oven!
So after a month or two without an oven I realized just how much I relied on one, and how much I missed it. That and the bread’s and sweets over there are very light and airy and I was missing my DENSE, filling breads. SO for my birthday we bought a microwave/oven (not a microwave oven, but a microwave that is also an oven, pretty cool, huh – just larger than a traditional microwave). ANYWAY I immediately started googling recipes and baking my little heart out. One of the very first things I made was my favorite lunch item, bagels! This very recipe to be exact!
- 1 1/2 C water
- 2 Tbsp packed light brown sugar
- 1 Tbsp yeast
- 2 Tbsp oil
- 3 Tbsp honey
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
- 3 C bread flour
- 2 1/2 C all-purpose flour
- 1 C mini chocolate chips frozen
- corn meal
- Place water, sugar and yeast in a mixing bowl and let bloom for 10 mins
- Add the oil, honey, salt, cocoa and flours and mix until the dough forms a ball
- Knead another 3 mins in your mixer (with a dough hook) or by hand.
- Place in a greased bowl (or back in your bosch) and let it rise for an hour or until doubled in size
- punch down and mix in frozen mini chips (but work quickly so they don't melt)
- Divide into 16 3 oz balls
- Poke a hole in the center and spread it wide
- place on a baking sheet that you've sprinkled with corn meal
- Let the bagels rise for another 30 mins
- Bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 mins (if your baking both tray's at once rotate them about 12 mins in)
A ton of my recipes are actually from my Japan days, as I mixed and matched recipes I found and started recreating food I craved and missed. A lot are already here – spinach dip, alfredo sauce. But some I haven’t made in years, but now I’m re inspired, and you’ll probably see a lot of basic baking as I reminisce a bit! Garlic and cheddar bagels, homemade tortillas, Classic white bread, homemade egg nog, etc…Do NOT miss a single post. Subscribe to weekly recaps for Ashlee Marie by Email Some of the links in my posts may be “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive a very small percentage.