In commercial bagel production, the steam bagel process requires less labor, since bagels need only be directly handled once, at the shaping stage.
Thereafter, the bagels need never be removed from their pans as they are refrigerated and then steam-baked.
The first known mention of the bagel, in 1610, was in Jewish community ordinances in Kraków, Poland.
Bagels are now a popular bread product in North America, especially in cities with a large Jewish population, many with alternative ways of making them.
According to a 2012 Consumer Reports article, the ideal bagel should have a slightly crispy crust, a distinct "pull" when a piece is separated from the whole by biting or pinching, a chewy inside, and the flavor of bread freshly baked.The increase in p H is to aid browning, since the steam injection process uses neutral water steam instead of an alkaline solution bath.If not consumed immediately, there are storing techniques that can help to keep the bagel moist and fresh.Toasting can have the effect of bringing or removing desirable chewiness, softening the crust, and moderating off-flavors.A typical bagel has 260–350 calories, 1.0–4.5 grams of fat, 330–660 milligrams of sodium, and 2–5 grams of fiber.