A Hole Lotta History: Beginnings of the Bagel

A Hole Lotta History: Beginnings of the Bagel

Bagels have become a staple breakfast food in the American diet. They’re perfect for an on-the-go start to your busy day. Despite its simplistic nature, the bagel has a larger role in history than you may expect.

We’ve been in the bagel business since 1932, but these guys trace back far before that. First brought to the United States by Jewish immigrants from Poland in the 19th century, bagels were popularized here in the Northeast, in New York City’s Lower East Side. Back then they were displayed on poles and strings, which is how the hole in the middle of the bagel originated.

“Beigel” is the Yiddish word for bagel, and it’s a popular theory that the bagel is a descendant of the German pretzel; another yeasted dough bread that is boiled then baked.  The process of boiling then baking, keeps the bagels fresh longer, which for economically challenged folks was a necessity.

As Jewish people began to immigrate to North America from Europe, many settled in Toronto and Montreal, creating bagels in Canada that were slightly different from the New York style. Meanwhile, in New York, there were so many bagel makers that Local 33, a bagel-makers trade union, was formed in 1915.

Over time, bagels became more jazzed up. For this, we can credit the invention of cream cheese in the 1930s, followed by a Family Circle Magazine article which suggested that bagels with cream cheese and lox would serve as a good cocktail party appetizer.

Today at Price Chopper & Market 32, our bagels are one of the staples of our business. We’re excited to introduce our NEW bigger and better bagels! Freshly baked in-store, they’re crispy on the outside and pleasingly soft and chewy on the inside, and they’re on sale this week! View our ad to learn more.

One response to “A Hole Lotta History: Beginnings of the Bagel”

  1. Carrie Griffin says:

    I’m from Montreal, and Montreal bagels are world-famous, but when I was living in Montreal while I was waiting for my visa to move to the U.S., my then-fiancé would bring me bagels from Price Chopper because I preferred them. That was 15 years ago, and since moving to the U.S., Price Chopper bagels have been a staple in our home. To change this winning product is a real shame, and not appreciated one little bit. The new bagels are too big and don’t even taste like bagels; they’re more like a crusty roll with a hole in the center, not at all like the excellent product that everyone has come to expect from your bakeries. In a time when healthy eating is being promoted, the last thing we need as consumers is a larger piece of bread which requires more filling. Senior citizens in my area love the original recipe because they were chewable (the new ones are too big to take a proper bite), and they were a manageable size for a meal. If this new product is here to stay, I’m sorry to say that I will be looking for a new bakery to purchase bagels.

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