New Yorkers are fiercely proud of their bagels, with good reason, so when confronted with something that looks like the circular bread, an initial reaction might be skepticism. But we have nothing to fear from Turkey's beloved simit, which resembles a bagel merely in shape and deliciousness, offering something lighter and crisper for a schmear or a sandwich. They're the name of the game at Manhattan's Simit & Smith, a chainlet offering Turkish-style breads like the simit, which they use to make sandwiches and other sweet and savory treats.

The company operates three outposts in Manhattan but actually makes their breads and pastries daily at a factory in New Jersey. There, the simits are hand rolled, twisted and formed into rings. They're baked in a convection oven, with a steam element that helps the bread not dry out. From there, they're dipped in a grape molasses before being rolled in sesame seeds or a multigrain topping. It's the bath that gives the bread its beautiful brown color and a hint of sweetness on the outside. Check out the process below, complete with dough throwing!

Simit Making from Gothamist on Vimeo.

According to the shop, the Turks will often dip their simit in tea or use the bread as a vehicle for some kind of dip. They're making fantastic dips in NYC, too, especially the Spinach, Artichoke and Parmesan version, made with yogurt for extra tang. The simits also make for good sandwich bread, especially when stuffed with Black Olive Spread and Aged Kasseri cheese; they also have more traditionally American-shaped loaves as well. Other savory baked goods include the delicious Pogaça—a type of roll filled with things like olives and cheese or feta and parsley—and Gözleme, a type of buttery Turkish flatbread rolled with toppings like spinach and cheese.

Simit & Smith has four Manhattan Locations: 124 West 72nd Street, 111 Worth Street, 1400 Broadway and 100 William Street