Welcome to Dimanche (That Means Sunday), a roundup of things that caught my eye this past week.
About a year ago, I was sitting at Vicia restaurant in St. Louis having lunch by myself at one of the big communal tables out on the patio. I recognized a guy sitting near me having lunch alone and we started talking. It turned out to be Scott Sandler, owner of Pizza Head restaurant in St. Louis.
We started talking and realized that we both had a shared passion for bagels. I had just made my first batch to semi-successful results (I used the wrong kind of yeast), and he told me that he was also working on his bagel game.
Over the next year, I watched Scott post pictures of his bagel creations on social media. I begged him to open a bagel shop on every single post. A couple weeks ago, he emailed me and asked me if I wanted to help him with a bagel pop up he was hosting at Vicia called Bagel Brain. I immediately said yes.
Prepping for the pop up was no easy task. We made 80 pounds of dough on Friday night, brought it to Vicia, shaped 270 bagels by hand, and then let them rise overnight. This took a few hours. Then, we reconvened at Vicia at 5:30 A.M. on Saturday morning to boil, seed, and bake the bagels. We also stuck around after baking to sell the bagels once the restaurant opened at 10 AM.
We ended up selling all 270 bagels in a little less than an hour. I had a feeling that the bagels would be popular but I had no idea that they would sell out that quickly. Vicia also sold out of the dishes it made with the bagels in an hour. It was a success by all accounts.
Every other person who came to buy bagels kept saying to me, “We need good bagels in St. Louis,” and it’s so true. I think more people realized that we have a shortage of good bagels after the Panera bread-sliced bagel debacle earlier this year.
I don’t know what the future holds for Bagel Brain or bagels in St. Louis, but I’m happy that I was a part of changing the trend this weekend. The experience also helped me learn more about making bagels, production, and how to translate the baking I do at home into a professional kitchen. Stay tuned for Bagel Brains developments.
Without further ado, here is Dimanche:
I’m loving this guide for how to cook more Indian food at home. Priya Krishna, author of the recent cookbook “Indian-Ish,” gives tips on how to prep your kitchen so you can cook more Indian dishes throughout the week. I liked what she said about keeping your pantry stocked. Also, I could stare at that photo of lentils for days. Check out the article in Saveur.
I’ve wanted to visit Australia for years and so I was glad to see this Melbourne travel guide. I’m a big fan of The New York Times‘s 36 hour travel guides and this one did not disappoint. Check out the story in the NYT if you’re planning (or dreaming about) a trip to Australia.
Speaking of Australia… I enjoyed this story about watermelon-rose trifle, a.k.a. Australia’s most instagrammed dessert. It’s always a pleasure reading Tejal Rao’s food writing. Get the full scoop in New York Times Magazine.
As I mentioned before, I worked at a bagel pop up over the weekend and I had a great time. I helped Scott Sandler, owner of Pizza Head restaurant in St. Louis, bake 270 bagels and sell them to the public. Learn more about Scott and his work with bagels in this Feast Magazine story.
It’s hard to keep the Democratic candidates straight for the 2020 election but this is a good guide. It gives a rundown of each candidate including their age, years of experience, platforms, and donors. It also includes their social media following, which at first I was surprised to see but I guess makes sense given the realities of today’s campaigning. Get the full guide in Quartz.
I had never tried Turkish coffee before this week and now, it’s all I want. I had it at Sultan Mediterranean Restaurant, a new sit-down place in The Grove neighborhood in St. Louis. I’d highly recommend stopping by for food and coffee soon.
The child in me (and, honestly, the adult in me) rejoiced at hearing that The Baby-Sitters Club books are going to audio. What took them so long? Elle Fanning will be narrating the books. Read more about the audiobooks in this LA Times piece.
Everyone needs to run to get the breakfast tacos at Taco Buddha. I stopped by the restaurant for brunch this morning and I was blown away. I’d highly recommend the chorizo and egg taco with avocado on top.
Last but certainly not least, Vox Media, Chrissy Teigen, and David Chang are teaming up to create food-centered TV shows for Hulu. I’m already excited about the first show, “Family Style,” which will be hosted by Teigen and Chang. Read more about the partnership in statement from Vox.
Enjoy your week! Here’s a song to get you started.