Monday, January 28, 2008

Bagels

"you guys should totally do a blog post on bagels. if it's something you think could be interesting, of course. Of course, maybe it's just me and April who're obsessed with bagels on this side of the Atlantic. Mmmm, bagels..." --Kim
Since Heather is the one person who introduces me to all things sophisticated, I did not become acquainted with the bagel till after I met her. (That means I've only known bagels for half my life. Sniff.) At any rate, it’s because of her that I am the man of culture and refinement that so many know so well today.

Bagels are hard to come by here in Spain, so whenever we visit the States, we make a point of getting at least one or two bags. One of the things I like about bageling in the States is the large variety of flavors you have to choose from. By the way, “bageling” is "the act of shopping for or buying or choosing a bagel.” It is akin to “spelunking” in that the bagel offers a never-ending array of cavernous mystery and high adventure. At any rate, I find it hard to decide which I like best:

--blueberry
--cinnamon
--garlic and onion
--plain
--honey and whole wheat

By way of proper bagel preparation, I like them…
1. toasted (which is to say, I do not enjoy them untoasted)
and
2. covered in pools of butter (which is to say, I do not enjoy cream cheese).

I also enjoy covering my bagel in either…
A. cinnamon/sugar mix
B. honey
or
C. jam.

In either case, the butter foundation must be laid, proper and thick.

Bagels are something I usually only think about every other summer when we are back in the US and I buy packages upon packages of bagels and whipped Philadelphia cream cheese. There a few random places you can get them in Madrid, but most of them leave something to be desired. So I usually just wait.

If I go to a real bagel store, I usually order a savory bagel with cream cheese and lox. That is my absolute favorite combination. If I buy them in the grocery store and take them home, I usually alternate between blueberry and onion, with appropriate cream cheeses to go with. It’s probably a good thing that they don’t sell this stuff in Spain or I might have serious addiction issues.

I remember when the bagel craze began and there was a bagel shop on every corner. All the donut shops went out of business because “everyone” said that bagels were better for you. Uh huh. Pretty sure that urban myth died a sad and lonely death. It seems like now the balance between the bagel stores and the donut stores has evened out again.

My friend Lucy and I used to go to Lotsa’ Bagel (which sadly does not exist in Colorado Springs anymore, and we still haven’t found a comparable substitute) almost every Saturday morning. Yummy!

8 comments:

Kim said...

perhaps you will understand my appreciation for bagels if you check out the menu at the Bloomington Bagel Company: http://www.bbcbagel.com/menu.html . Their selection of bagel AND cream cheese flavors is amazing (Troy, how can you not like cream cheese? There must be something wrong with you (though maybe we already knew that given that Heather had to introduce you to bagels), it's just the natural accompaniment to the bagel). Also, there's a new bagel place in town on C/Principe de Vergara (no. 78), called L'Bagel Kaffee, and while their selection is small (plain, sesame seed, & poppy seed), their bagels aren't bad. Not bad at all. Another link, should you care to hear what someone else thinks: http://www.elmundo.es/metropoli/2007/12/07/restaurantes/1196982047.html

Troy and Heather Cady said...

Wow, were you just sitting there waiting for the bagel post? That was fast! :) I'm considering a trip to the US and your bagel store as soon as possible!

And yes, we all know Troy needs to learn about cream cheese :)

Heidi Renee said...

everything bagel w/ philly and smoked salmon... mmmmm!

we also get wild blueberries here and mix our own philly w/ them and sugar (we actually use splenda) - it's like frosting on a bagel - melty, lovely wonderfulness!

do you have a bread machine?? i have a recipe and you can boil/bake your own!?!?!

Troy and Heather Cady said...

Hmmmm Heidi, you can send me the recipe but I'm notoriously horrid about baking. Bagels seem complicated to make but maybe I'll be inspired.

I'm going to have to think about something else so I don't obsess about bagels :)

Heidi Renee said...

okay - here goes: (from itty bitty breadmachine cookbook)

(i'm just putting the large recipe down because why bother with a small one for all the work?) (add ingredients in order of listing)

water - 1 1/3 cups
honey - 2 T
salt - 2 t
w/w flour - 1 1/3 c
bread flour - 2 2/3 c
yeast - 2 1/2 t

let machine knead dough once, let dough rise 20 min. in machine (ONLY). remove dough after 20 min and turn off machine.

divide dough into the number of bagels (makes 16) - roll each piece into a rope and make into circle, press ends together.

(might need to wet a bit to stick ends together).

place on a well greased baking sheet, cover and rise 15-20 minutes more (only)

boil 2" water (in non-aluminum pan) - lower 3-4 bagels into water - cook for about 30 seconds on each side.

remove from water, drain on a towel, sprinkle w/ seeds or onion bits, return to greased baking sheet - bake in preheated 550* oven (sorry i was 50 degrees off in the IM chat!) for 8 minutes.

mmmmm - enjoy!

you've inspired me - i think we'll be making these this weekend! (and we'll have some of our cheap atlantic salmon on top!)

Kim said...

can you make this recipe w/o a bread machine? cause I don't have one but would be willing to give it a go nonetheless.

and no, Heather, wasn't waiting, I just spend too much time on the internet recently. probably need more of a life...but trying to get inspired about thesis=life is difficult too. Shocking, I'm sure.

Heidi Renee said...

hey kim - that recipe is for bread machines - but i found one here that has really good reviews that is a "hand made" recipe:

http://www.recipezaar.com/26168

enjoy!!

Monaca said...

troy - do you ever use jam off on your bagels?