Before I was Financially Blonde, I was “Bagel Store Girl”
As many of you know, I have devoted my blog this week to the loss of my friend, Rob, who passed away unexpectedly at 40. Rob and I met when I was 14 years old, and I walked into a bagel store with my mom and saw a “Help Wanted” sign. I was tired of babysitting and really wanted another job, so I inquired about the opening. The man behind the counter left and sent Rob my way. One look at him and I immediately regretted my decision. He was not only a large man, but he looked mean and brooding. He informed me that the job was from 6am to 2pm and asked if I had a ride to work. My mom immediately shared that there was no way she would wake up that early to take me to work. After discovering that we lived in the same town, Rob, who was 19 at the time said that he would pick me up every morning for my shift.
My chauffeur, my friend
For three years, true to his word, he picked me up every morning at 5:45 am, and on mornings when he could not, he had a co-worker pick me up instead. There were even mornings when I overslept, he called after getting to the store to wake me up and he would send someone back to get me. I continued to work at the store for two years after that (when I was home from college), but drove myself. I went from fearing my chauffeur to missing him. I have so many wonderful memories from my five years of working with Rob. He not only became a friend, but I developed a love for him like my brother. I even returned home from college to attend his wedding. He later went on to buy and run a number of bagel stores with his family. In recent years, we have been Facebook friends and every few months, I would drive my family over an hour to pick up the best bagels on the planet (in my opinion) or as my son calls them, “Rob bagels.” And every time we went there, Rob would never let us pay, even after Hurricane Sandy when we wanted to support him.
In honor of “Rob bagels,” I am sharing this recipe with you today, and I am really excited about it. This casserole is perfect for brunch, but could definitely be consumed for dinner as well. And the best part about it is that it is not only really inexpensive to make and serves at least 6 people, but it is flexible. After the basic ingredients, you can really add whatever you want to the mix, it is difficult to mess up. If you add a bottle of Cava and a grapefruit flavored Pellegrino, you can have brunch and mimosas for 6 for less than $20 all in. LOVE it!