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Toasting can have the effect of bringing or removing desirable chewiness, softening the crust, and moderating off-flavors.
Bagels are now a popular bread product in North America, especially in cities with a large Jewish population, many with alternative ways of making them.
The steam bagel is not considered to be a genuine bagel by purists, as it results in a fluffier, softer, less chewy product more akin to a finger roll that happens to be shaped like a bagel.
Steam bagels are considered lower quality by purists as the dough used is intentionally more alkaline.
Variants of the word beugal are used in Yiddish and in Austrian German to refer to a similar form of sweet-filled pastry (Mohnbeugel (with poppy seeds) and Nussbeugel (with ground nuts), or in southern German dialects (where beuge refers to a pile, e.g., holzbeuge "woodpile").
According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, 'bagel' derives from the transliteration of the Yiddish 'beygl', which came from the Middle High German 'böugel' or ring, which itself came from 'bouc' (ring) in Old High German, similar to the Old English bēag "ring" and būgan "to bend, bow".
In commercial bagel production, the steam bagel process requires less labor, since bagels need only be directly handled once, at the shaping stage.
Thereafter, the bagels need never be removed from their pans as they are refrigerated and then steam-baked.Contrary to some beliefs, the bagel was not created in the shape of a stirrup to commemorate the victory of Poland's King John III Sobieski over the Ottoman Empire at the Battle of Vienna in 1683.Linguist Leo Rosten wrote in The Joys of Yiddish about the first known mention of the Polish word bajgiel derived from the Yiddish word bagel in the "Community Regulations" of the city of Kraków in 1610, which stated that the item was given as a gift to women in childbirth.The increase in p H is to aid browning, since the steam injection process uses neutral water steam instead of an alkaline solution bath.If not consumed immediately, there are storing techniques that can help to keep the bagel moist and fresh.First, cool bagels in a paper bag; wrap the paper bag in a plastic bag (attempting to rid the bags of as much air as possible without squishing the bagels); then freeze for up to six months.