I first heard about Trader Joe's Everything but the Bagel seasoning when fellow blogger Biz used it in her Everything Bagel Quiche. Soon after, I walked into my friend Margaret's kitchen in Nashville and saw a jar on the counter. I knew I had to try it then, and that Fourth of July weekend trip was the perfect opportunity since my boyfriend Eric and I were slated to cook Sunday Brunch.
We headed off to the Nashville's Farmers Market which comes complete with a wide variety of fresh produce, live bluegrass and vegetable-shaped bike racks.
Leaving with bags full of beautiful produce, we came home to plan our brunch menu while enjoying an heirloom tomato sandwich, our first trial of the Everything but the Bagel seasoning. The blend of white and black sesame seeds, poppy seeds, dried garlic & onion, and sea salt flakes was the perfect addition to fresh tomato, cucumber, Bibb lettuce and mayo on Ciabatta bread. It was simple yet added a nice pop of flavor. I didn't even miss the bacon in this sandwich!
We had selected corn, tomatoes, cucumbers, kale, a really cool squash that was half yellow and half green, and tons of fresh blueberries, blackberries and strawberries so we proceeded to sculpt a plan for the Everything but the Bagel brunch. We kept the menu simple but extremely fresh and flavorful. The squash was grilled and the seasoning added at the end so that the seeds wouldn't burn on the high heat of the grill. We used the seasoning to enhance our crispy kale chips with potato and pepper hash, as well as a topper for our tomato and aged cheddar cheese strata. It was even the highlight in a vinaigrette for a simple salad with sunflower seeds and goat cheese.
I did manage to hold myself back from adding it to my Berry Bread Pudding with Vanilla Cream Sauce. However, I do think it would be a perfect addition to a savory bread pudding such as The Chopping Block's Caramelized Butternut Squash, Kale and Gruyere Cheese Bread Pudding.
Since that meal, I've stocked up on a couple of jars myself as the 2.3 ounce glass shakers are just $1.99 at Trader Joe's. I've also noticed more and more Everything But the Bagel recipes and applications online. PureWow uses it for Cauliflower Rolls, which mimic dinner rolls. The Kitchn is covering chicken with it. Lays even recently rolled out a new flavor of potato chips called Everything Bagel with Cream Cheese. Nashville's Butcher and Bee is serving up a dish called Everything Beets, which I think is a fabulous idea and one I'll soon try.
But my favorite way to use the seasoning so far is the simplest preparation we used in the brunch: soften some butter and add a healthy amount of the seasoning to the butter. Slather that over an ear of corn hot off the grill and you can't go wrong. Of course, you could certainly use the seasoning on a homemade bagel but it can go so much further than just bread. Try it on grilled chicken, buttered popcorn, baked potatoes, creamy dips, pizza dough, salad dressings, pasta, mac & cheese, or panko-breaded anything. This everything seasoning literally goes on everything!
If this has inspired you to run out and get a bottle of Everything But the Bagel seasoning and experiment with it for brunch, get ideas in our upcoming New Orleans Brunch on the Grill or Alfresco Brunch on our Lincoln Square outdoor grilling patio, Bonjour Brunch or Bloody Mary Brunch classes!