Sunday, February 21, 2010

The ToMoLie Barkery Makes its Debut


With the first yearbook deadline looming over my head, everything else has been either stacked on my desk or ignored.  I finally had a chance to to to my Google Reader to check on the blogs I follow and found a flurry of activity going on over at Kaibab Bernese Mountain Dogs.  Kaibab is Mary-Ann Bowman’s blog and I started following it about November 2008 (?) with the arrival of her F litter.  This was quickly followed by the arrival of the G litter.  I would start my day with a cup of coffee and read about the puppies developments and drool over the amazingly cute puppy pictures.  Little did I know that as I was having puppy fever, events were conspiring to bring Lottie to live in Chicago with us.  Lottie is almost the same age as the Glitterati (G litter).

Even though there are no pups to coo over on the blog, I still follow it, but not on a daily basis anymore.  I really enjoy the pictures of Mary-Ann’s five Berner girls.  However, Mary-Ann is an excellent writer and often includes some wonderful nuggets of advice.  I’ve taken several of these to heart (is it an inconvenience or a problem?) and have put them to use in my relationship with Brian (my mini-me).

So, much to my surprise, I discovered that people all over the place were making bagels!  This was doubly funny as I was reading the posts in reverse order in my Reader, so had no clue what all the excitement was over.  Fred has been cooking with me quite a bit lately and weekend breakfast has become something of an event.  It used to be a chore for me as no one ate eggs the same way, so by the time I’d eat, I’d have made three breakfasts and the dish was chock full of dishes.

Bagels, I thought.  I like bagels.  Kevin likes bagels.  This is something we could do.  So, a month late (I kept forgetting to put yeast on my shopping list) we made bagels today. 

Kevin was rearing to go when Fred and I got up.  DSC_7044

He got the stool out and started reading the recipe.  We warmed the water, added the yeast, sugar and salt.  Then came the flour.  We used the 1/2 cup of whole wheat flour and he thought we were done after the first 1/2 cup of regular flour.  So not done! 

Lottie, my regular sous chef, was very confused.   DSC_7045

1.  Why are we cooking in the morning?
2.  Why is Kevin’s stool in my usual spot?
3.  I don’t smell meat.  Why are you bothering?

We got all the flour added and the mixer just wasn’t cutting it.  Time to switch to hand kneading.  Kevin’s comment was, “Mom, is it supposed to do that?”  My answer was, “No.  Not really.”


Kevin just had to have a go at it.


He thought it was pretty funny but quickly left to wash his hands.  Mary-Ann and her son and daughter-in-law used a KitchenAid for their bagels.  Maybe in the new house I’ll have enough space to have a KitchenAid.  For now, I just have a kitchen aid a.k.a. Fred.


We got the dough soft and set it off to rise.  Fred and I were on tenterhooks.  We have a bad history with getting dough to rise.  My grandmother would always make sticky buns for Christmas morning breakfast.  When she got too ill to continue the tradition, Fred and I vowed it wouldn’t be lost.  The first year was not good.  Then, we moved to my mom’s for the sticky bun prep.  This year, we tried it on our own again, and after a full day, the dough finally rose.  Grr.


There’s my sous chef.  Lottie was very curious about this whole affair.  To be honest, she is curious about everything.  We put the dough in the utility room by the furnace to be warm and had to gate her out.  She probably would have no qualms about eating the dough before it was ready.

With some trepidation, we peeled the towel back.  The dough didn’t seem much bigger and we were terribly worried that our rising curse was once again at work, but soldier on.  I divided the dough and started to form the bagels.  Kevin, despite his earlier enthusiasm had fallen under the spell of Halo and was done with bagels.  Brian refused to get involved.  Monty, however, was very interested.


I put the bagels on the board back in the closet for the final rise and crossed my fingers.  Fred worked, reading from one of the biggest binders I’ve ever seen.


I worked on my latest scrapbooking project which is on hiatus until the materials I ordered online last night arrive next week.  Lottie waited.


After about 20 minutes, it was time to boil the bagels.  This part was fun.  They got HUGE!


When they were all done (I ended up with nine instead of eight), they were sent off to the oven after inspection by a penguin.


It did take two hours from start to end, but it was worth it.  Fred had almost eaten his breakfast by the time he got his fresh bagel out of the toaster.  He dunked it in his fried egg and declared, “These are good!”  Brian didn’t care for them, but he has never been a bagel fan.  At least, he tried them.

Here was my breakfast, shared with my furry sous chefs:


Thanks Mary-Ann!  Our family had a great time pitching in to make the bagels and they really were awesome.  I have them to enjoy for breakfast all next week.

P.S.  ToMoLie Barkery is named after TObie, MOnty and LottIE, pronounced like tamale.

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