Jason: Are you using an egg dough or an eggless dough? Also, do you cook them in plain or sweetened simmering water?
My eggless bagels are cooked in 4 quarts of water mixed with 2 tablespoons of honey. The proportions:
1 Tbsp dried yeast
1 tsp sugar + 2 cups lukewarm water
3 Tbsp oil
3 Tbsp sugar
1 Tbsp salt
4-5 cups flour
The bagels made from a richer egg batter are cooked in 2 quarts of water mixed with 2 Tbsp sugar. The proportions:
2 Tbsp yeast
2 cups water + 2 Tbsp water
2 tsp salt
¼ cup oil
6½ to 7 cups bread flour
Bring the pot of water to the boil, then reduce to a steady simmer. Lower the bagels individually into the water; they should rise quickly to the surface, at which point invert them; after turning, they’re boiled for an extra 3 minutes; removed from the pan, brushed with an egg wash and sprinkled with poppy seeds, then baked at 400° until ideally browned.