Mm, bagels. The quintessential morning staple, best hot and crunchy out of the toaster with a generous slathering of cream cheese and a nice hot cuppa.
Thankfully Japan is no stranger to these bread-y rings of goodness, so it isn’t difficult to get one’s bagel fix should the craving strike. The well-known chain BAGEL & BAGEL has been serving up the good stuff since their first store opened in Shinjuku in 1997, and now has about 70 locations open throughout Japan.
While foreign cuisine can be found in abundance here nowadays, from pizza and pasta to Indian curry and naan, creative chefs in Japan will often take these foods and make it uniquely their own. (Potato-and-mayo pizza, anyone?) Bagels are no exception, and starting December 26, BAGEL & BAGEL will be rolling out a line of very Japanese-style bagels, including such “Wa” (Japanese) ingredients as seaweed and edamame.
▲ Look at all the choices we have! Let’s take a closer look.
1. Mochi bagel
This one is made with rice flour and glutinous rice to give it a springy, chewy texture similar to sticky mochi rice cakes. The simplest of the bunch, this bagel is recommended to be eaten with sweetened soy sauce for dipping.
2. Nori bagel
Nori is a type of edible seaweed, most often sold dried and pressed into sheets used for making sushi rolls.
3. Shiitake Sesame bagel
Made with dried shiitake mushrooms and black sesame seeds. This one ought to be good!
4. Wasabi bagel
Want a little spicy kick to your bagel? Can’t go wrong with wasabi. Cream cheese would pair nicely with this one.
5. Hijiki Edamame bagel
Definitely an inventive flavor combo for this one. Hijiki is a dark seaweed that’s often eaten as a side dish, boiled with soy sauce, sugar, and mirin to give it flavor. Combine the iron- and calcium-rich hijiki with protein-packed edamame soy beans, and you’ve got yourself a pretty powerful bagel!
6. Kinako White Chocolate bagel
Kinako is a kind of soybean flour that has a slightly sweet, nutty flavor. This one should definitely satisfy your sweet tooth.
In addition to these six new flavors, BAGEL & BAGEL will also be offering two different bagel sandwiches. And we all know bagels make some pretty bomb sandwiches.
Keeping with the Japanese-style theme, on the left we have marinated tuna with wasabi mayo, and on the right, tofu hamburg patty with grated daikon radish and ponzu (a sauce made with soy sauce and citrus juice).
The bagels range in price from 180-200 yen (about US$1.49-$1.66), and the sandwiches from 490-580 yen ($4-$4.80). These scrumptious creations will only be on sale for a limited time – until January 25, 2015, or until supplies run out, whichever comes first. So if you have a BAGEL & BAGEL near you, don’t wait!
Source and images: entabe