The Internet Is Divided Over This Controversial St. Louis Bagel Slicing Method

published Mar 27, 2019
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A couple days ago, a St. Louis-based Twitter user named Alek Krautmann quietly posted a photo that would end up causing outrage and confusion. In that photo, two packed boxes of bagels appear to be sliced like loaves of bread (rather than in half down the middle, as is traditional, and correct). It’s unclear if Krautmann, who claims that this bagel slicing technique is a “St. Louis secret,” is simply a well-meaning guy who brought a nice breakfast treat to his co-workers, or if he is an agent of chaos working to destabilize the breakfast industry. Either way, his photo pretty much sent Twitter up in flames today.

Now, to be fair, there are a few people out there who think that cutting bagels this way isn’t sacrilegious, like this person, who called it genius or this person who rightly pointed out that it’s actually kind of a smart way to serve bagels for a big group.

The staff at Eater entered the debate, too, and they make a few good points: You get more surface area with this slicing method, while minimizing the density, so if you’re all about your schmear then you might want to switch to this slicing method (ultimately the team concluded that the real problem is that the bagels are from Panera). Almost everyone else agreed, however, that anyone who cuts bagels this way should go to jail (okay, that’s a little harsh).

Slicing a bagel like bread has what I assume are some pretty obvious pitfalls: First of all, the outer crust, a necessary of layer of crunchy texture (especially if you like a lot of cream cheese), gets reduced to a razor-thin strip. Writer Amanda Mull hits the nail on the head: the ratio of “crust/interior/cream cheese” is totally thrown off by slicing the bagel this way.

The outer crust is also home to your chosen bagel’s flavor, whether that’s sesame seed, salt, or garlic. You might as well just spread cream cheese on an actual piece of plain bread without it. On top of that, how is one supposed to efficiently spread cream cheese on top of this flimsy little slice without it tearing or breaking in half, especially in the rush to get seated before a work meeting? It would be pure chaos, and I want to know how Krautmann’s co-workers managed it. If you want to eat a piece of toast, just eat a piece of toast, but leave our bagels alone.

Okay, so I’m being a little dramatic. You should actually eat your bagel however you want, and ignore people who tell you it’s weird. Bagels are a joy for all, and should remain that way. Besides, this is the actual right way to slice a bagel.