Bagel Glasses

Some people might think that the bagel is just for eating. The truth is that it’s abilities are far more than anyone ever expects. Just the other day, I lost my glasses and had to rush out somewhere. Not wanting to crash into anyone I decided to pull a Macgyver and use what I had at hand. Looking around the kitchen, I found a mini bagel and some licorice and carefully fashioned a pair of Bagel Glasses.

Ingredients:

1 mini bagel
4 straws of licorice
1 full imagination

Instructions:

The first step would be to cut your mini bagel in half. Then run a straw of licorice through the each of the center. Carefully twist the two pieces of licorish together and tuck the ends into the center of the bagel halves. Next, you will need to make two small incisions on the end of each bagel side. You can use a smaller steak knife and simply slide the knife into the edge to make a small opening. Tuck the remaining straws of licorice into these openings and stand back to admire your creation. Carefully slip on your new glasses and you’re good to go!

Spinach Pie

Spinach pie is traditionally called Spanakopita in Greek restaurants. This is my family’s twist on the recipe, using a traditional pie crust instead of layers of phyllo dough.

spinache pie

Crust:
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup shortening

Filling:
1 bunch of washed and chopped fresh spinach
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup chopped yellow onion
4 or 5 sliced mushrooms
1/4 cup shredded carrot
2 tablespoon olive oil
salt, pepper and dill weed to taste
12 oz. cottage cheese
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
1 tablespoon parsley
1 egg

Instructions:

1. Knead crust ingredients together. Divide into 2 balls of dough. Use one to form the crust bottom and one for lattice strips for the top.

2. Fry the spinach, onions, mushrooms, and carrot in the olive oil until the spinach wilts.

3. Gradually mix the remaining ingredients and add into the spinach mix.

4. Pour the filling into the pie and bake at 350º F for 1 hour.

Regards

My friend Emily emailed me last night to pass along a new recipe for some cookies she had invented recently. The cookies are called “Regards“, so you can literally “send your regards” to someone.

Regards, a cookie

These are essentially coconut-oat-fruit cookies, but have a delicious twist to them. I actually varied from the recipe Emily gave me, which called for quick oats instead of rolled oats. I also cut down on the butter, added a half cup more coconut and only used 1/2 an apple rather than a whole. I imagine they’d have a smoother texture using quick oats, but the cookies were still delicious, scoring a very positive rating out of all five taste testers in the house.

Ingredients:

3/4 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup wheat flour
1/2 cup white flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups quick oats
1 1/2 cup shredded sweetened coconut
1/2 apple, peeled and diced
1/2 tablespoon nutmeg (to taste, be generous)
some cinnamon

optional:
other fruit like nectarines, raisins, peaches or whatever your heart desires
walnuts

Instruction:

1. Set your oven to 350º F
2. Cream the butter, brown sugar, white sugar, eggs, and vanilla.
3. Add the wheat and white flour, baking soda and salt, then mix.
4. Add the oats, coconut, diced apple, nutmeg, and cinnamon, then mix.
5. Add any additional fruit or nuts as desired and mix. Your final cookie dough should be pretty sticky and thick.
6. Spoon the dough onto your cookie sheets. As with any cookie, make sure to shape the cookies as close to the same as possible so they cook evenly.
7. Cook for 10 minutes or until golden brown.

Be sure not to over cook as these cookies tend to dry out if left in the oven too long.

The end result is a batch of soft, delicious cookies!

Enjoy!

Pizza Bagels

You’ve seen the advertisements on TV. Maybe. If you were lucky. The ads had a catchy little jingle that went something like, “Pizza Bagels, eat them all the time, even dinner time!”

We’re gonna take the idea and run with it. Why spend a ton of money on a Djorno Pizza, or even pizza hut when you can make pizza bagels and have a perfect snack or meal, depending on who’s over to enjoy your cooking skills!

Ingredients:

Your favorite bagel
tomato sauce
mozzarella cheese
toppings (as desired)

Instructions:

If you’ve made pizza, this is common sense. If you’ve eaten pizza, this should be easy too. Cut your bagel in half and lightly spread the tomato sauce over it. Then take a few slices of cheese and loosely cover the bagel. Believe it or not, you don’t want to over doit with the cheese. Then add your pepperoni, canadian bacon, or whatever toppings you like on your pizza normally. Now you can take 3 routes for cooking, microwave, microwave + oven, and oven.

Feel free to use a toaster oven rather than a full huge over if you prefer (or if you already have something else baking).

Microwave: Cook for 1 minute on high, or until you see the cheese start to melt.

The main problem with microwaving these is that if you cook bread-based food for too long, it gets rubbery and looses it’s appeal quickly. I don’t recommend cooking bagels with a microwave unless you are really desperate.

Microwave + Oven

One trick to recovering some nearly-ruined microwave Pizza Bagels is to take the bagels from the microwave and put them into the oven (or toaster oven) so the bread can crisp up and lose that soggy bread feeling.

Oven: Set your oven on High and broil for 1 minute, or until the cheese has melted thoroughly. This method allows you to cook the toppings, warm the bagels up, and melt the cheese without burning anything.

Mini Bagels

I was going through the archives of Delicious Days and found that they posted a recipe and photos of mini bagels on my birthday, way back in January! How could I have missed it?!

The post is titled “Cute, Cuter, mini bagels” and their photos prove exactly that. You can’t but help just want to start baking your very own little mini bagel.

The article reminded me of a very tempting advantage that mini bagels have over regular large sized bagels: you can have multiple mini bagels to try different flavors in one sitting, without feeling like you’ve eaten your fill. Nicky, the author of the post, says it so much better:

“Generally, if available, I always opt for the smallest portion of a snack, which makes it easier to indulge in the many flavors and tastes. I love to sample without making commitments, so to speak. Voila , this is where the mini bagels come into play. Three to four big bites and they are history, allowing to taste different spreads and toppings without being completely stuffed.”

The Bagel Machine

If I asked you how many bagels a team of 4 people could make in an hour, most people guess around 100 to 300 bagels each. If they were really good at making bagels. This may be true if they were making bagels by hand, but the bagel machine changed everything.

The Thompson Bagel Machine changed the entire bagel industry, back in 1963. Daniel Thompson relates the huge technological innovation of the first Thompson Bagel Machine on his official website,

“Before Lenders installed my bagel machine, they made bagels in the following manner: Sam Lender mixed the bagel dough and one man cut it into small slabs and fed it into an Italian breadstick machine. The Italian breadstick machine made bagel dough strips that were then distributed to workstations where six to eight men rolled them by hand into bagels. With this system they averaged 50 dozen bagels per hour per man. The first Thompson machine, with three unskilled workers, was able to do the work of eight skilled workers.”

That was in 1963. Fast forward to the present, where Lender’s Bagels makes tens of thousands of bagels using only four people!

“Winkler working with other companies engineered, built and installed a number of bagel lines around our K-Frame bagel machines that produce 64,800 bagels an hour! It only takes four people to operate these lines with the same 99.5% efficiency. There is not another bagel machine on this planet that comes close to any of the performance records that we have established with these machines!”

Daniel Thompson’s continual innovation of the bagel machine has earned him quite the dollar, and the top place in the bagel industry.

Read Daniel Thompson’s whole story about the history of the bagel machine at the official Thompson Bagel Machine website.