Bagels are those round rolls with a hole in the middle. We could say that they are the salty donuts. But they are much more than just a bagel. They have centuries of history behind them. In addition, they have become an icon of American gastronomy. Although they are of Polish origin, in the United States, and more specifically, in New York, they have marked a before and after. That is why they have decided to celebrate Bagel Day every January 15, so come and join us to celebrate!
Do you know their history?
Bagels originated in Poland in 1395. References to a roll known as Ovsyanick, the predecessor of the Bagel, have been found in ancient manuscripts. These breads, which had the same shape, were somewhat thinner and harder than the later Bagels.
Many centuries later, during World War II, they were brought to the United States by Jewish immigration. There they became such an important food that a Bagel Bakers Local 338 union was formed in the 1900s. In order to support the Bagel trade, led by immigrants.
In fact, in New York, these bagels are iconic. Many even consider it not authentic if it’s not New York.
History of Bagel Day
Like the vast majority of gastronomic events, this one also has its origin in the United States. Even more so, after knowing how important bagels are there, and how famous they are.
However, the first day to be marked on the calendar was February 9. This day commemorates the Bagel & Lox, the classic smoked salmon filling, which also has its own day. It was not until 2020 that this date was also included in the calendar. Thus giving the possibility to celebrate any type and any bagel filling.
Celebrate Bagel Day
If you too are passionate about bagels, it doesn’t matter how you fill them – or even if you eat them plain! Celebrate this day by making your own bagel, make a great homemade dough and enjoy it with your favorite filling.
Homemade Bagels Recipe
- 450 g Wheat flour
- 125 ml Warm water
- 125 ml Warm milk
- 30 g Butter
- 5 g Dry yeast
- 1 tsp Salt
- 1 tsp Sugar
- 1 Egg
- Sesame seeds
- Olive oil (to grease the bowl)
- We start our bagels by sifting the flour in a bowl. Add the salt and sugar and mix.
- In another bowl, put the water and milk. They should be warm, so we put them in the microwave for a few minutes. When it is warm, add the yeast and dissolve it well.
- In the flour bowl, make a well in the flour in the center and add the water with the milk and the yeast. Add also the butter, previously melted in the microwave.
- With a spoon, we move our dough until it is a homogeneous dough. Let it rest for 5 minutes and continue stirring until it comes off easily from the bowl.
- When it comes off the walls of the bowl, we will put it on a smooth, floured surface and we will knead it with our hands, stretching it and folding it over itself. We will knead it until it has an elastic and smooth texture, about 10 minutes.
- When ready, put a few drops of oil on your fingers and lightly brush the sides of the bowl. Cover it with plastic wrap and let it rest for 45 minutes. Remember that the dough should rest in a warm, draught-free place.
- After that time, put it back on a floured surface and press it to remove all the air it has. Cut with a knife to remove 6 to 8 portions, depending on the size you want your bagels.
- Make a ball with each portion, flatten it slightly and make the characteristic hole in the middle with your fingers. Once they have the shape, let them rest for 20 minutes.
- In a large pot, put plenty of water and a spoonful of sugar. Meanwhile, preheat the oven for 10 minutes at 200ºC.
- When the water begins to boil and the bagels have rested, place them one at a time in the boiling water for 10 seconds. Remove them with the help of a skimmer, draining the water well. Place them on a baking sheet on parchment paper to prevent them from sticking.
- With the beaten egg, paint them on top and sprinkle them with sesame seeds or seeds of your choice.
- Place the tray in the oven at medium height. Let them bake for 20-15 minutes until the surface is golden brown.
- When they are ready, take them out of the oven and transfer them to a wire rack to rest until they cool.Once they are ready, you can eat them or open them and add the filling you like the most.
Another great way to celebrate Bagel Day is by innovating with all the possibilities offered for its filling. Try avocado, it’s always a winner! Or if you prefer the classics, opt for the smoked salmon bagel with cream cheese.
Don’t forget the meat! Prepare a very Iberian roscón, rubbing natural tomato, with a drizzle of oil and Serrano ham. Delicious, isn’t it? Or do you prefer it sweet, perhaps with banana and melted chocolate? Bagels can also be filled with sweets, which makes them the ideal dessert or snack for those with a sweet tooth.
Did you know that in the 1610s it was customary to give a bagel to women when they went into labor?
The story goes that husbands would give this bagel as a gift in order to ‘distract’ them from the pains of childbirth by eating it. Bagels are delicious, but we don’t know if they are good enough to avoid or lessen the pain of childbirth.
If you also want to celebrate this magnificent day, don’t forget to share it with everyone with the hashtag #BagelDay. And remember to leave us your comments, ideas, opinions… We love to read them! You can also follow us on social media to keep up to date with all our publications. You can find us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.