Salt beef, like New York-style corned beef, is a Jewish deli meat made from beef briskets cured in brine. The salt breaks down the tough brisket meat while letting its flavours emerge. Salt beef ought not be an exercise in aerobic mastication, as some London purveyors would have you believe, nor should it be stringy and dry. (The residual salt is already enough to build a two-pint thirst.) In a proper sandwich the meat surrenders instantly to the chew, melting in the mouth and flooding it with flavor. [Read more...]
I was not seeking something as tough, doughy and bloated as a New York bagel, nor was I expecting a lighter ring of dough with the old-world character of a Montréal bagel. If a London bagel meant middling size, sweetness, chewiness and crispness, so be it. But to be truly great a London bagel needed to have something more at its core than a hole. It needed to show a baker’s pride and craft.