My new-found love of tweeting has meant that I have come across all sorts of wonderful gluten free products and venues, including some which are quite local to me 🙂
I came across Everything Bagels on Twitter and I am so glad I did! As well as selling a variety of bagels and pizzas on their stall at the Whiteladies Road Farmers and Fair Trading Market, they also sell gluten free bagels! I jumped at the chance to try some of these out, so last Saturday I ventured across Bristol to the market to meet George and her wonderful team.
Having previously lived in Clifton I am acutely aware that parking can be issue, so I opted to get to the market quite early to ensure I could park nearby and to also make sure that they didn’t sell out before I got there!
Once at the stall, George explained how her gluten free bagels are made and how she tries to reduce the risk of cross contamination from the production of her other products. As a result I would suggest that they are not currently entirely gluten free and are more ‘no gluten containing ingredients’, but George includes text on her labels to ensure that her customers are informed of her procedures (see right).
Everything Bagels currently have three gluten free bagels available: cinnamon and raisin, sesame and date & walnut. I sampled some of each of these before purchasing one of each, plus an extra cinnamon and raisin, as I knew this was going to be my favourite!
Once home I set about trying the bagels, but as I wanted to test their durability, two were eaten straight away, one was left for the following day and one was frozen. I thought that this would then be a good way to see how well they last.
George had explained that she is still testing the products until she gets a consistency and taste that both herself and her customers are happy with. Once that has been achieved she said that she will be working on their presentation, however I think they look great as they are 🙂
As all of the bagels were baked fresh that morning, I wanted to try a cinnamon and raisin one straight away, so this one and the sesame one were toasted for breakfast.
I don’t recall ever having a bagel before, even in my pre diagnosis days, so this was a whole new experience for me, which also meant I had nothing to compare them too. I thought that the taste of the cinnamon and raisin was amazing, as I’d expected, and it tasted similar to something I’d eaten before, but I still can’t remember what! It did taste quite cake like to me, however my boyfriend pointed out that I probably hadn’t toasted it enough, so this possibly contributed to the texture.
When sampling at the market, I was least keen on the sesame bagel, only because it tasted quite plain to me, but I toasted this one for my boyfriend and he enjoyed it. He pointed out that the plain ones can have extra fillings added to them, when the flavoured ones are more likely to be eaten as they are. Bearing this in mind, I added some honey to a bit of the sesame one and it was lovely, so point well made!
One comment was that they were quite heavy for bagels. Having never had one before, I couldn’t really comment, but if I was to compare them to bakery products, then I would probably agree that they weren’t very airy. I think this probably contributes to them being very filling and I’m glad to have shared them with my boyfriend, as I don’t think I could have eaten them on my own!
Having mentioned this to George, she thinks that boiling the bagels may have something to do with the heaviness, but as the products are still in the trial stage, this is something that can be worked on 🙂
The following day, I toasted the date and walnut bagel and it tasted just as fresh as those we’d had the day before. This one was a surprise for me, as I didn’t think I liked dates and have only recently started eating nuts, but it tasted gorgeous! I didn’t think that it needed any additional filling to it, although I may try experimenting in the future.
One thing I did notice when toasting this one, was that it bubbled in the toaster, so I’m not sure if this was the moisture from the boiling process coming out of the bagel, but it certainly made them very hot when removing them from the toaster, so I will be aware of this in the future.
Finally, during the week, I had the final cinnamon and raisin bagel that had been frozen for a few days. George did say that when freezing them you need to make sure that they are wrapped up well and this is definitely a great tip, as again it tasted fresh. Although I noticed the bubbling in the toaster once again, it didn’t detract from the amazing taste.
Having tested these bagels for their taste, texture and durability, they definitely succeeded on all levels in my eyes and I look forward to buying some more in the coming weeks :).
The Whiteladies Road Farmers and Fair Trade Market runs on the first and third Saturday of every month from 8.30am – 2pm, at the junction of Apsley Road and Whiteladies Road.
For more information on Everything Bagels, you can follow them on Twitter (@everybagels).