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Kupel’s Jewish bakery thriving with unlikely owner

<i>WBZ</i><br/>Kupel’s is a Kosher bakery renowned since 1978 for its baked goods and award-winning bagels.
WBZ
WBZ
Kupel’s is a Kosher bakery renowned since 1978 for its baked goods and award-winning bagels.

By Liam Martin

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    BROOKLINE, Massachusetts (WBZ) — If you live in Brookline, you know the name. And you’ve probably eaten the bagels.

Kupel’s is a Kosher bakery renowned since 1978 for its baked goods and award-winning bagels.

Farzad Ghorbi started working here in 1984 as an immigrant from Iran, and is now the owner: a Muslim man, married to an Irish Catholic woman, now running a Jewish bakery.

“Only in America,” Farzad told WBZ-TV. “Only in America. The greatest country on Earth!”

And Farzad believes this is the greatest bakery, too. He takes great pains to keep it that way – and keep the bagels in line with their reputation.

“We make it the old-fashioned way. No preservatives, no additives,” he said.

The ingredients are just flour, sugar, salt, yeast and water. That’s it. And they boil the bagels before baking them.

“That’s the only way. That’s why our bagels are what they are,” he said.

This week, they’re busy making and frying the traditional Hanukkah treat – sufganiyot. Kupel’s will sell thousands of them during the eight-day festival of lights. That’s in addition to the hamantaschen and rugelach they sell year-round. And on top of the bagels. On a good day, Kupel’s will sell 4,000 bagels.

It keeps Farzad busy. But he wouldn’t have it any other way.

“I love the one-on-one,” he said. “If I had to sit down behind a desk, that would kill me.”

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