Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Soft Baked Pretzels

Another snowy day today . . . perfect for new recipes. I made soft pretzels once when the kids were little, but found this recipe and decided to try them again. They were easy and very tasty.

First step is to proof your Yeast

Mix dough in stand mixer.

Place dough into a greased bowl and let it rise about an hour.

This is after the dough has risen.

Divide the dough into 12-15 pieces.

Shape into pretzels.

Place the formed pretzels onto a greased cookie sheet.

Boil the pretzels in your water/baking soda mixture, for about 30 seconds each.

Beat together your egg yolk and water for your egg wash.

Brush each boiled pretzels with your egg wash and top with pretzel salt. (I used kosher salt.)

Bake for 12-14 minutes, then cool on baking rack.

Enjoy with your favorite dipping sauce. We tried mustard and a few flavored mustards today. Very tasty!

Soft Pretzels

1~1/2 cups warm water
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 package of active dry yeast
4~1/2 cups all purpose flour
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Vegetable oil for pan
10 cups water
2/3 cup baking soda
1 large egg yolk beaten with 1 tablespoon water
Pretzel salt for kosher salt for pretzel tops

Combine warm water, sugar and kosher salt in bowl of stand mixer and sprinkle yeast on top. Allow to sit for five minutes or until mixture begins to foam. Add flour and butter, and using the dough hook attachment mix on low speed until well combined. Change to medium speed and knead until dough is smooth and pulls away from side of bowl, approximately four to five minutes.

Remove dough from bowl, clean bowl, then oil with vegetable oil, return dough to bowl and cover with plastic. Let sit in warm place for approximately 50-55 minutes. (Or until dough has doubled in size.)

Heat oven to 450 degrees fahrenheit. Lightly brush two cookies sheets with vegetable oil and set aside.

Bring ten cups water and baking soda to rolling boil in 8 quart saucepan or roasting pan.

In the meantime, turn dough out onto work surface and divide into 12-15 equal pieces. Roll each piece of dough into a long thin rope. Make a U shape with rope, holding ends of rope cross over each other and press onto bottom of the U in order to form shape of pretzel. Place onto cookie sheet.

Place pretzels into boiling water, one or two at a time for about 30 seconds. Remove from water using large flat spatula and place on cookie sheet. Brush top of each pretzel with beaten egg yolk and water mixture and sprinkle with pretzel salt.

Bake until dark golden brown in color, approximately 12-15 minutes. Transfer to cooling rack for at least five minutes before serving.
(Taken from "Guide to Homemade Bread".)

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