Turkish Bagel-(Simit)

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Because of living abroad, I’m certainly missing Turkish foods, especially street foods. I’m sure many of you also missing who are far away from homeland! Turkish bagel is the most popular snack at home, work, or school. You can have Turkish bagel for breakfast with a cup of tea, sliced tomatoes, cucumbers, feta cheese/cream cheese and olives.

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Turkish bagel is the fast food of Turkey. There are mobile stalls everywhere in every city, especially in Istanbul. There are also many Simit Houses all around the country, where you can have simit with various fillings such as olive paste, cream cheese, kasar cheese(similar to mozzarella).

Turkish bagel (Simit) was the only food that I missed a lot when I came to U.S. I don’t remember how many times I tried simit recipes at home. But finally I made my own recipe. I hope you enjoy with this recipe as much as I did.

Ingredients:

  • 500gr (3 1/4 cups) bread flour
  • 300ml (1 1/3cups) lukewarm water
  • 1/2 tbsp salt
  • 1-1/2 tsp yeast + 1/4 cup of lukewarm water
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 125ml (1/2 cup)  molasses, like syrup
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1 tbsp flour
  • 1-1/2 cups of sesame seeds

If you have a standing mixer or bread machine the dough is pretty easy to make. If you don’t, you’ll do some exercise kneading the dough, which is not a bad thing I suppose.

In a small bowl, mix the yeast, sugar and 1/4 cup lukewarm water. Stir well so the yeast dissolves. Let it rest for 15 minutes – it will become foamy.

For making the dough, Combine the flour and salt in a bowl, then add the yeast mixture and stir. Put the dough on the counter and knead 15 minutes, until it becomes very smooth. Don’t flour the counter to knead the dough! Then cover with plastic wrap and set aside in a warm, draught-free place for 1 hour, or until doubled in size.

Place the dough on a lightly floured work surface and divide it into 7-8 even sized pieces. Combine the molasses with 1cup water and 1tbsp flour in a large bowl. Place the sesame seeds on a large plate.

Working with one piece of dough at a time, use your hands to roll the dough out to make 40 cm (16″) long ropes. Fold in half so two ends align, then lift off the board and use your hands to twist each rectangle into a two stranded “rope”. Place back on the work surface and join the ends together to make a circle, pressing the ends firmly together to seal. Repeat with the remaining dough to make circles.

Preheat the oven to 460F and line a large size baking tray with baking paper. Dip each ring, first into the molasses mixture, immersing completely to coat, then drain well and toss in the sesame seeds, turning gently to coat. Transfer to the prepared tray and set aside at room temperature for about 10 minutes, to puff slightly. Spray some cold water on the sesame rings and the walls of oven using a spray bottle, then place the two trays on the second rack of the oven side by side.  Bake in the oven for 20 minutes, or until deep golden and cooked through.

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Transfer to a wire rack to cool. Simit are best eaten on the day of making but will keep, frozen in an airtight container, for up to 3-4 weeks.

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20 thoughts on “Turkish Bagel-(Simit)

  1. This is great. I assume you add the 1 1/3 C to the flour and salt as well? When I did this my dough was watery and had to add an extra ~ cup of flour. But I was not using bread flour. Dough is rising now! Can’t wait…

  2. I’m using bread machine to make dough and these exact measures, it might be because of bread flour. I have no idea 🙂 I would like to hear the result, I hope you like it.

    1. As you saw, they came out great!! Must be because I did not use a bread maker (used a mixer). Thanks again!!! Excited to share with Turkish husband 🙂

  3. Yay! I am glad you shared this recipe. Simit is the food I miss most from Turkey. I tried to make it couple times but they just became failed attempts 😦
    your pictures and the comments above encourage me to try it again. I am so excited to try the recipe. Once I make it, I will share my experiences 🙂

  4. i saw these bagels on turkish series i watch (dubbed in Arabic ) and i often see people eating them . i was curious about their taste and the last time we visited turkey i had to busy some and i ended up visiting the bakery every single day . i love them and will try to make them . (a local deli sells them for $ 3 each and i dont buy since iam not a good baker ..

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