The time is 3am. Corey Cobb is hard at work boiling and baking bagels in the kitchen of Greenfield’s Bagels and Deli. If you think making a bagel is as simple as popping a frozen product into the oven, we need to talk.
The bagel first started in Jewish communities in Poland in the 1600’s. The basic design of a “roll with a hole” not only was practical for baking evenly, but also ideal for transportation, handling and displaying. In the early 1900s, Polish Jewish Immigrants brought bagels to New York. Bagels are still a popular bread item throughout the U.S., especially in cities with Jewish populations, resulting in many variations of the original classic.
Greenfields’s makes 900-1700 bagels per day. The number varies depending on orders to fulfill local demand; as well as providing for many coffee shops, high schools, hotels, car dealerships, hospitals and out of state orders. Greenfield’s proudly supplies the majority of fresh baked bagels for the Upstate, SC.
Robin Greenfield, proprietor of Greenfield’s Bagels and Deli has been baking bagels the traditional way since she started in 1999. Robin explains, “It’s been a dream of mine, cause I’ve always worked in supermarkets.” She realized, “…if I’m making money for everyone else, why shouldn’t I try it for myself?” In 1999, Robin took the plunge and opened a 1200 sq. ft. area in a Harris Teeter grocery store. Word spread throughout the community about Robin's great bagels and deli. In 2001 she took her next step into her present location on Laurens Road, currently the area proposed to be “Midtown Greenville.”
Bagels with cream cheese and lox/nova (cured, smoked salmon) are a traditional part of American Jewish cuisine. A GOOD bagel and lox can cost anywhere from $12-$20 depending on the quality of the smoked salmon. Its superb flavor profile and higher cost, makes it a delicacy to many. Think Jewish caviar.
Sweet Katie Grace is enjoying her bagel with a full table of friends and family. Yes, Greenfield's is definitely KID friendly.
The process of creating the perfectly browned, shiny crust with a distinctive taste and chewy texture can only come from traditional boiled bagels.
The dough comes in frozen and placed on racks to proof. After 48 hours in the cooler, they’re ready to bake. Bagels are tossed into a 40-gallon kettle for 20-30 seconds until they float. Once they float and change color slightly, they are pulled and placed onto burlap covered wooden boards that have been soaked to prevent sticking and burning. With 60-72 bagels on each shelf, they bake in the 550-degree oven. They go around 2-3 times and then are flipped off the board onto the actual oven deck (or pan if they’re cheese). Another 10 minutes and they’re ready to go!
You can choose from a wide variety of cream cheese flavors: plain and low fat plain, veggie and low fat veggie, scallion, jalapeno, olive, cinnamon raisin, and nova.
The making of a pastrami Reuben on bagel
“The Leo” is a traditional Sunday Brunch dish that brings me back to my grandparent’s kitchen in the Catskill Mountains, NY. For only $9 Robin will grill you up an omelet of lox, eggs and onions with your bagel of choice.
Standouts: The Leo, Pastrami Ruben on a toasted bagel, and the favorite of all, a bagel and cream cheese with ‘center cut’ lox/nova on an everything (ET) bagel. Sandwiches come standard with a sour or half sour pickle, pickled tomato (my daughter’s personal fav), a few olives AND your choice of a variety of sides or a bag of chips.
Pssstt… on the table, don’t miss the jar of ET (code for EveryThing) seeds. Shake some onto your food for that extra kick into flavor heaven... oh so good.
Greenfield’s is not your average deli.
It's a home away from home. A meeting place for many and a staple to the Greenville Jewish community. Robin, in jest, is considered the Jewish Mayor of Greenville. She’s a friend to all, caters many lifecycle events, and supplies Greenville with delicious fresh bagels and NY Style Deli. She says it best herself, “I’m just an old hippie.” And goes on to quote the Beatles song, I am the Walrus, “I am he, as you are he as you are me and we are all together.”
Our answer: Goo goo g’joob Robin.