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Old 06-16-2005, 10:58 AM   #1
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Thumbs up Ray's NY Bagels

I am a bit of a bagel snob, I will admit it. I was born in NJ and lived there for the first 4 years of my life. My parents and their parents and all their families were from NY. Even once we moved to MA we would still spend a ton of time in NY with the rest of the family. breakfast every morning was bagels with every topping you could imagine. All sorts of fishes and spreads and veggies.

Well the area I live in has a ton of transplanted New Yorkers. It seems that everyone from my parents generation who lived on Long Island got up and moved to out town in MA. My parents are still to this day bumping into people who moved here from either their town or a neighboring town.

Anyway enough about my history. Here is the point of my post. Tons of bagel shops have tried to make it here. The story is always the same. The owner moved here from NY and could not find a real NY bagel. Nothing he or she found lived up to their expectations, so they decided that they would open their own shop since they are from NY and know what a good bagel should taste like. It never works. There are some very good bagel shops, but none of them have captured the magic that is a NY bagel.

Here is where Ray's NY bagels comes in. Ray pretty much experienced the same thing as I just described. He could not find a good bagel outside of NY no matter who made it. Well he came up with a solution. He decided to make his bagels in NY and freeze them and ship them around the country. The catch is that he only cooks them 95% of the way. When you buy them you need to finish cooking them at home. All this entails is popping them in the toaster oven for 5 minutes.

Let me tell you I was VERY skeptical. How could a frozen bagel be any good? Well I broke down and tried them this week and boy was I impressed. I will take one of these frozen bagels over any fresh bagel from any bagels shop outside of NY/NJ that I have ever tried. The flavor is decent. Not full of flavor like a true good NY bagel, but not bad either. For flavor I would give it a 6 out of 10. Texture however is great. Crisp on the outside and soft and chewy on the inside. They are a bit smaller than a typical NY bagel, but that is not a bad thing. Some NY bagels can be way too big for some people. Do yourself a favor and try these if you get the chance. And no I do not work for the company

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Old 06-16-2005, 11:22 AM   #2
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GB:

I guess I'm a bagel snob, too, and I didn't grow up on NY bagels.

I tried Ray's and didn't think they were wonderful. My primary problem with them is the onions. I like onion bagels and when you bake Ray's the rest of the way, the onions burn. I suppose if I tried a plain bagel, the problemn would go away.

After trying Ray's (my last hope), that's when I decided to try to make my own. I'm going to put the onions on the inside.
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Old 06-16-2005, 11:26 AM   #3
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Andy I guess I left out an important piece of info. The ones I bought were the sesame variety. Yeah I can see how that would be a problem with the onions!
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Old 06-16-2005, 11:33 AM   #4
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GB and Andy:

I am just amazed than here in Beantown you cannot find a decent New York bagel. They are just big bland bread dough donuts here.

I have sometimes brought some home from NYC and frozen them, but they are, of course, not the same.

I'll try a bag of Rays and see what I think. I'm like Andy and usually go for onion, but maybe foil could alleviate that problem?

Andy, good luck to you in your attempt to make them. That is an abitious project.
Plus, you need NYC tap water!
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Old 06-16-2005, 11:37 AM   #5
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Jenny I bet foil would be a great solution!

Like you said, the water is the key. I read somewhere about someone who owned a bagel place in NY and then decided to move to California (I think). Once there he opened a bagel shop again. Well much to his disappointment it just was not the same. He did some research and some lab tests on the water and decided it was the mineral contents that was the key to a true NY bagel. If I remember correctly he tried to truck NY tap water to CA, but that did not last too long as it was too expensive. I might have some of my facts wrong from this story as it was a while ago that I read this, but you get the gist
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Old 06-16-2005, 01:15 PM   #6
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I heard that water story related to pizza crusts rather than bagels.

I'll try the foil as well but now I want to make my own bagels. It's not all that complex. There's really just the extra step of boiling the dough before baking that makes it different from any other bread.

Thanks to you both.
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Old 06-16-2005, 01:33 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M.
It's not all that complex. There's really just the extra step of boiling the dough before baking that makes it different from any other bread.
Making a bagel is easy. Making a GOOD bagel is not

I am sure if anyone can do it then you can Andy! Let us know how they come out.
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Old 06-16-2005, 01:35 PM   #8
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Will do, GB.

I won't get to it 'til next week, S. O.'s daughter and grandkids are up for the weekend from Fla. I'll be busy.
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Old 06-16-2005, 01:38 PM   #9
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Have a wonderful time with them!!!
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Old 06-16-2005, 03:47 PM   #10
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munch, munch, chomp, chew, chew.

sorry guys, enjoying my REAL ny bagel, with a schmear.
i could go for some razor thin sliced smoked salmon, or smoked whitefish. (couldn't help it...)
gb, have you ever tried smoked trout with bagels (with mayo and finely diced celery, or with a roasted garlic aioli)?
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