A nonprofit, independent news source to inform, inspire, educate and connect the St. Louis Jewish community.

St. Louis Jewish Light

A nonprofit, independent news source to inform, inspire, educate and connect the St. Louis Jewish community.

St. Louis Jewish Light

A nonprofit, independent news source to inform, inspire, educate and connect the St. Louis Jewish community.

St. Louis Jewish Light

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From St. Louis Bread Co. to Ina Garten, bagel slicing never fails to spark a showdown


Occasionally, via Google Alerts, I stumble onto a real gem of a story that shines a light on what people are talking about. My alert for “bagels” went haywire over the weekend thanks to Jewish food icon, Ina Garten. This new viral moment brought back memories of St. Louis Bread Co.’s viral challenge of bagel-slicing traditions.

“Ina’s Bagel ‘Hack’ Leaves Fans in a Whirl”

The Food Network recently unearthed a vintage clip from an episode of “The Barefoot Contessa,” featuring Garten assembling a pair of bagel sandwiches. The caption posed a provocative question: “Have you ever seen how Ina slices her bagels?!”

In the video, Garten kicks things off by divulging her unconventional bagel-slicing technique, advocating for dividing the bagels into thirds. She then demonstrates by making two horizontal cuts across the bagel, resulting in three evenly sized rounds.

@foodnetwork can you believe how Ina cuts her bagel?! #inagarten ♬ original sound – Food Network

The video quickly became the subject of online articles and criticism of Garten’s slicing style, eerily reminiscent of the 2019 kerfuffle involving the quirky culinary tradition from St. Louis Bread Co’s. (Panera) innovative approach to bagel sampling. As you may remember, Twitter erupted with opinions and memes when St. Louis native Alek Krautmann made this post:

Bagel Backlash or Bagel Brilliance

As bagel aficionados criticized Krautmann, along with St. Louis Bread Co. and St. Louisans over slicing, Garten’s controversial bagel-hacking technique has sparked its own Instagram debates and Twitter tirades as foodies weigh in on the age-old question: How should one slice a bagel?

Luckily, the backlash was mostly based on misunderstanding Garten’s point, but once the food world has lost its collective mind, no one can bring it home. Still, I’ll try.

Basically, Garten’s point was if you cut two bagels into thirds, you can now enjoy three bagel sandwiches. The problem really was that in the video, you don’t see her cut the first bagel, and at the end, she ends up with three. This was too confusing for many. Many critics such as Zwilling USA’s TikTok account believed she was “wasting bagel” or making the bagel less doughy, but Garten is no bagel waster.

Food writer Robin Shreeves of All-Recipes.com wrote “She wastes no bagel, however, because she makes three cream cheese and smoked salmon sandwiches out of the two bagels. Her way creates a better sandwich filling to bread ratio. Ina’s way is a bit like creating a fresh version of store-bought bagel thins. If you’ve ever had the store-bought thins, they don’t always satisfy like a good, fresh bagel. But Ina’s version will.”

Slice and Sensibility

If you’re like me and are all in on Garten’s slicing ideas, please share your results with the bagel-loving Jewish Light audience. Send us any pictures of your slicing adventure to [email protected], and we’ll share ours as well.

| RELATED: Ina Garten is cooking up the happy Jewish memories she’s always wanted

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About the Contributor
Jordan Palmer, Chief Digital Content Officer
Jordan worked at KSDK from 1995 to 2020. Jordan is a three-time Emmy award winner who produced every kind of show from news to specials during his tenure, creating Show Me St. Louis, The Cardinal Nation Show. He started ksdk.com in 2001 and won three Edward R. Murrow Awards for journalistic and website excellence in 2010, 2014 and 2020. Jordan has been married for 25 years and is the father of two college students. He is an avid biker, snowboarder, and beer lover. He created the blog drink314.com, focusing on the St. Louis beer community in 2015. Jordan has an incredible and vast knowledge of useless information and is the grandson of a Cleveland bootlegger.