Like any born and bred New Yorker, I have some strong feelings about bagels. And that means there are some things I absolutely won’t do to a bagel. While I know these seven rules of “bageling” are completely subjective — and I know inevitably many of you will send me impassioned emails telling me why I am wrong — here goes anyway.
These are my rules for what NOT to do to a bagel. Feel free to watch our short video below as well.
It’s no mystery where this trend of “scooping” bagels came from: The carb-hating people of America decided to make bagels the enemy. Bagels are not meant to be eaten every day. But when you do order one glorious, chewy specimen, order the whole darn thing. If you feel inclined to order that bagel scooped, just please go order something else.
Stick to Classic Flavors
I am not a big fan of blueberry bagels, raspberry bagels, or hot flaming Cheeto bagels. Stick to the classics and you can never go wrong.
No Weird Sweet and Savory Combinations
I cannot even count the number of times I have been on line at a bagel joint and overheard an absolutely horrifying order: “Cinnamon raisin bagel toasted with bacon, egg, and cheese,” or, “everything bagel with strawberry cream cheese,” or perhaps most horrifying, “cranberry bagel with scallion cream cheese and lox.” In what terrifying world do these combinations sound appetizing? The answer is, they don’t.
Flagels Still Have Carbs
Flagels must have been invented by that same group of delusional, carb-hating humans I mentioned earlier. It seems many people order a flagel because their narrow frame makes them seem healthier, but flagels do not have less carbs than bagels: they are simply flattened bagels. Some people do like flagels for the great surface area, thus more cream cheese and toppings. And I respect that. But for the rest of you who might think you are making the healthier choice, you’re wrong. Just order the regular bagel and live life without fear.
Don’t Overdo the Cream Cheese
It’s like all the bagel restaurants got together one day and decided: okay everyone, let’s add approximately four inches worth of cream cheese to every bagel. Then our customers will walk around with cream cheese all over their faces and clothes and it will be hysterical. WHY SO MUCH CREAM CHEESE!? Can we just have one, moderate, even layer of cream cheese, pretty please?
Sometimes Less is More
While we are on the topic of size, sometimes bigger isn’t better. Portions in America just keep growing, as do waistlines and obesity problems, yadda yadda yadda. Maybe Americans could be saved the humiliation of ordering scooped bagels if the size of each one was just a smidge more reasonable.
No More Rainbow Bagels
Some love this trend, and others loath it. They are pretty, they are bright. But these neon monstrosities are a far cry from the Polish peasant food that was once sold on the street. Give me a classic, beige bagel any day.