Today, as I was contemplating my lunch (a bagel sandwich with figgy goat cheese and whatever veggies I find at the store, probably lettuce, red onion, maybe tomato. I want avocado, but fear it would overwhelm the cheese), I decided to look up if there was an effective way to steam the bagel sandwich at home, and found out that it apparently isn’t a common thing and am now shocked and saddened for any of you that have never had them.
Now I love a good, crunchy, toasted bagel as much as anybody. But, sometimes you just don’t want crunchy, and this is where the steaming comes in. The steaming makes the bagel all soft and warm and chewy, melts the cheese and makes everything awesome. The only problem is you can't just let them sit around or they will get tough.
I first ate them here when I was in grad school. And, from what little I can find online (most stuff is about steaming them instead of boiling them before baking), it looks like it is primarily a Midwestern thing.