Yesterday morning I was thrilled to find this cute Malibu gourmet shop selling the famed H&H Bagels of my previous New York life. They were stacked at the deli counter and I happily bought a bag of them to contribute to the house brunch I was heading to.
I asked an employee twice if they were fresh because I just couldn't believe my luck. The employee said, yes they are, they're made every morning (maybe they are shipped in par-baked?), and the day-old ones are sold as such by the other breakfast pastries. Well you can't just bring bagels to a house, so I picked up a brick of Philadelphia cream cheese and some salmon lox too.
Everyone at brunch was thrilled about the bagels, knowing of H&H, and someone reached into the bag and did something I should have: he felt one. It was hard. They all were. So I called the market and told them what happened. They unsympathetically insisted these bagels were made fresh that morning, and said after sitting on the counter for a few hours will get harder. I replied "I am from the land of bagels, and I've had bagels that were sitting out for most of a day and they weren't this hard." The cold person on the phone said she didn't know what else to tell me. Well!
At that point I looked at my cream cheese brick and noticed the $4.50 price tag, and also noticed the salmon cream cheese container that was made up for me was left half empty probably for the same price as being full.
What I'd like to know is, besides making the mistake of not paying enough attention at the market, am I crazy? A 2-hour old bagel will not be as hard as a day-old bagel, right? My friends and I decided to halve and toast them all for the heck of it, which produced a product similar to a thick wedge of melba toast. Hard to the teeth, and a big waste of money. Unless something about making bagels in LA makes them dry out faster. Anyone have any ideas?
Malibu Kitchen & Gourmet Country Market
3900 Cross Creek Rd, Malibu, CA 90265