Saturday, February 15, 2014

Homemade Soft Pretzels

1 ½ cups warm water (110 – 115 degrees)
1 tsp sugar
1 ¼ tbsp kosher salt
1 package active dry yeast

4 ½ cups flour
4 tbsp butter (melted and cooled)

7 cups boiling water
¼ cup baking soda

1 egg – beaten
1 tsp water

1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp toasted garlic
1 tsp toasted onion

In a stand mixer combine the water, sugar and salt. Sprinkle the yeast on top and let sit for about 5 minutes.  Add in the butter and flour and using the dough hook, mix on low for about 5 minutes.  If you don’t have a stand mixer then mix by hand in a bowl and turn out onto a lightly floured surface and kneed by hand for about 10 minutes.

Remove dough from mixer, oil bottom and sides of mixer and place dough back in bowl and cover with plastic wrap.  I sealed mine with a rubber band to ensure the seal.  Set aside for 1 hour in a warm dry place.  I had turned my oven on to warm and set the bowl on my stove covered with a towel.

Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and generously spray with non stick cooking spray.  Pour dough out onto a lightly floured surface.  Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  In a large shallow pot or pan (about 3” tall) add water and bring to a boil.

Lightly kneed the dough into a long log.  Cut the log into 16 equal pieces.  Roll each piece into a long rope about 16” long and about ½” thick.  Take each piece by either end and twist together 1 or 2 times and lay over the untwisted part making a pretzel shape.  Set aside. 

When the water comes to a boil add the baking soda.  Gently put the pretzels into the boiling water in batches for 30 seconds.  I fit 4 at a time in mine.  Using a spider or a slotted spoon remove the pretzels onto the baking sheet.

Lightly brush with the beaten egg and water mixture and whatever toppings you want.  I used salt, garlic and onion.  Bake for about 13-15 minutes.  In my oven it was closer to 15 minutes or until golden brown on top.  Immediately remove from baking sheet to a cooling rack.  Let cool for 5 minutes before serving. This recipe made about 16 pretzels and only takes 2 hours start to finish

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