Toppings: A variety of toppings can be added to the bagel before baking, either directly to the dough after kettling, or after the bagel is glazed. Poppy seeds, sesame seeds, caraway seeds and coarse salt are easiest to use because they can be placed in a dish directly from the jar, and the bagel can be dipped into the dish; the seeds adhere to the moist dough. Or they can be sprinkled on top of the bagels just before baking, and pressed down lightly to adhere. I've seen bagels with sparse toppings and those that are covered from top to bottom. There's no right or wrong way.
Add 1/2 cup finely chopped, sauteed onions to the tops of the bagels.
Add 1/2 cup finely chopped raw onions to the tops of the bagels; they will cook right along with the bagels.
Use dehydrated onion flakes or packaged onion soup that you have reconstituted with water, olive oil, or vegetable oil. Use 1 tbs. Dry product to 1/2 tbs. Water or oil, and soak for 2 to 3 minutes.
Mix together 1/2 cup chopped yellow onions, 1 green onion (white part only), 2 tsp. Olive oil, 2 tsp. Poppy seeds.
Sprinkle with garlic salt, finely chopped fresh garlic or garlic flakes.
For the "Everything Bagel" (see recipe), combine 1/2 cup finely chopped onions, 1 clove garlic, finely chopped, and 1/4 cup sesame seeds. Sprinkle mixture on bagel tops before baking.
Use ground caraway or whole caraway seeds. These are particularly good on rye bagels. They can be combined with the topping for the "everything bagel".
Sprinkle with red pepper flakes, adjusting the "heat" to your liking.
Top with mixed fresh herbs, including parsley, chives and dill.
Dip into or distribute about 1/4 cup coarse salt or kosher salt on top of 1 batch of bagels just before bakiing.
Poppy, caraway, sesame and celery seeds can be used directly from the jar. Just dip the bagles into a dish of seeds or sprinkle seeds on top.
Toasting nuts before using them on (and in) bagels enhances their flavor. Walnuts, almonds, pecans or hazelnuts can be used on bagels as toppings and also added to the dough at the beginning or before they are shaped and rise the second time.
Sprinkle with rolled oats or multigrain cereal, which will brown while baking.
Proceed to Step 6: Baking
Continued In About Bagels - General Directions 5
The Best Bagels Are Made At Home by Dona Z. Meilach Isbn 1-55867-131-5