A bagel is a bread product originating in Poland, traditionally shaped by hand into the form of a ring from yeasted wheat dough, roughly hand-sized, which is first boiled for a short time in water and then baked. The result is a dense, chewy, doughy interior with a browned and sometimes crisp exterior. Bagels are often topped with seeds baked on the outer crust, with the traditional ones being poppy, sunflower or sesame seeds. Some also may have salt sprinkled on their surface, and there are also a number of different dough types (Wikipedia, nd).
Bagels may contain common food allergens, such as wheat, eggs, milk and nuts. Additionally, they may contain other ingredients because of toppings and styles. In the event of an allergic reaciton after consuming a bagel, contact your allergist.
Bagels are typically bought whole and then toasted, with cream cheese and other toppings being added after.
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Here is a tidy roundup of the best bagels in the United States!