Doctoring The Bagel

Writing this post on a hot Tuesday afternoon feels wrong: this is definitely a Sunday morning post. It’s what we did this past Sunday morning and what you should do this upcoming Sunday morning. So file this one away for the weekend, okay?

Here’s what we’re talking about: how to turn a bagel that you don’t make yourself (though you certainly can) into something special. You’ll need: two bagels and two packets of cream cheese. Then take a trip to the farmer’s market and come back with…

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Rejoice! Everything Bagels from Scratch

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Like a dying swan, I came to L.A. and watched as, feather-by-feather, all of my bagel-eating genes fell to the ground. I tried, I really did. I made bagel bombs, which were a nice alternative, but not the real thing. I stood and ate a bagel at Brooklyn Bagel and thought, “Oh man: this doesn’t feel right at all.” I basically gave up. And then, very gradually, a new idea began to hatch in my brain: what if I made my own everything bagels? How hard could that be? On Friday afternoon, I bought bread flour and malt powder and cream cheese and nova and red onions; on Saturday morning, I woke up all set to make Peter Reinhart’s famous recipe.

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The Build-A-Better-Bagel Workshop

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Our friends Patty and Lauren, who visited us recently from New York, did us the huge service–a mitzvah, as the Jews might say–of bringing along bagels from Murray’s Bagels. We’ve been experiencing something of a bagel blight here on the west coast (remember those Bagel Bombs I made?) and these bagels came as a great relief. We put them in our freezer and decided to break them open only in the case of severe bagel emergencies; one such emergency arose last weekend.

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Everything Bagel Bombs

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If you live in a great bagel city–and by that, I mean New York–this post will not be important to you. Feel free to skip it.

Everyone else: this is the most important post on a food blog you will ever read. In fact, if I were you, I’d stop whatever you’re doing, shut the door, and power off your phone. Even if you’re a brain surgeon in the middle of surgery, or a diplomat negotiating peace in the Middle East, this takes precedent. Please sit down.

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