Great British Baking - Week Three

Good morning everyone and welcome to week three- the infamous BREAD WEEK. To be honest, this is probably my least favorite week in past competitions, but it always seems to start the real competition and separate the real challengers with the struggling home bakers. Plus- typically the contestants that do well this week end up going to the finale!

This season's bread week had the typical three challenges- the Signature Bake was to create two soda breads (one sweet and one savory), and the Showstopper was to create a large decorative bread plaque portraying what they are grateful for. Sandwiched in between these two bakes was the Technical challenge- in Bread Week it's always given by Paul, and this year he chose to have the bakers make rainbow bagels.

I've baked bagels a few times before, but never with colors! It seemed like an intimidating task, but it ended up mostly just being a tedious process.  I first made dough like normal, then divided it into five equal pieces. Each piece was colored with food dye and left to rise. My color was definitely not as bright and vibrant as the bakers, but they all looked great in my opinion!

After the dough was done rising, I had to roll each out into a rectangle and cut out 6 slices to be twisted and rolled into bagels. This was the step that I was worried about, but it ended up being a lot easier than I expected! I have a silicon baking mat with measurements on it, so I just rolled out my dough and cut straight edges to make it more even. I used a pizza cutter which seemed to help make easier cuts as well!

After the bagels proofed for a bit, I boiled them in a baking soda and water solution to help give them the distinct chew and shine of a bagel. They immediately went into the oven after the bath and were done!

Overall, this was definitely the most fun challenge so far! I enjoyed the process of making these and was happy with the end product. Still not Star Baker worthy, but I would definitely be in the top for these.

The Good

  • These tasted like a bagel! They were nice and chewy and cooked perfectly.
  • I liked how the colors looked, even if they weren't super bright like the bakers'.

The "Needs Improvement"

  • I think that I rolled these out a little too much so that they were pretty thin. I also might have boiled them for too long or overproofed them which made them deflate a little bit.


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