What’s the sitch with ideal bagel texture and temperature?
This is the first in a brief series called “Food Strategies.” It will soon be clear why the series was given this title.
Bagels get tough and chewy very quickly as their temperature drops. An ideal bagel is fresh from the bagelry, piping hot and soft. If your bagel has been out of the oven for 45 minutes or longer, you MUST toast or microwave said bagel! A stale, room-temperature bagel is hardly a bagel at all, sharing more in common with a paperweight than with its warm, toothsome bagel relatives.
And if you expect to be able to quickly spread a soft creamed cheese atop a fully cooled round, think again! Refrigerated cheese spreads require heat activation in order to lay flat and release the full complexity of their flavor. Without a scalding bready surface for your cheese to interact with, you may as well just spread crayons on your bagel (and not the good tasting kind).
To get the most out of every bagel experience, please, don’t compromise when it comes to temperature.