Growing up in the midwest, I never had truly experienced the greatness of a good bagel. I honestly didn’t even know what I was missing. I actually thought they were supposed to be dense and bready, with a structureless outside. It’s a bit sad, but I didn’t know any better, so I didn’t mind. Back then bagels to me were just a vehicle for cream cheese anyway.
After visiting New York this year, I finally got a taste of what a treat bagels really can be. I’m pretty sure I had one everyday I was there. Actually, I think there was a day I had two. Anyway, since then I’ve been on a search to find them in Chicago*.
I knew that making my own was no easy task, but it’s amazing what a person gets done when they have two days in a row off who isn’t used to that! I did get them started a little late the first day, and ended up weighing and rolling them out until about 2 am, um, a little tipsy, but a girls gotta do what a girls gotta do.
So, how did they turn out? Well, I ate one of these bagels without any cream cheese. Without anything at all. I just ate it. Because it was delicious on its own.
You can find the recipe here. I made all different toppings with what I had on hand. The rosemary seasalt, cinnamon sugar, and dill were the stand-outs in my opinion.
*Found ’em—they’re in Skokie.