Saturday, June 28, 2008

Homemade Soft Pretzels

Homemade pretzels take some effort...but once you have a taste of the warm, chewy, salty flavor - y0u won't care how long it takes! These turned out great and would have been easier if Aaron hadn't been trying to install a new kitchen light at the same time I was making them interrupting every few minutes with... "Can you get me the...(fill in the name of the tool)".
Some advice...the parchment paper in the oven really smoked up the kitchen - a LOT! I went back and read a couple different recipes that don't mention the parchment, so I think I'll skip it next time and hope nothing sticks. I doubled the recipe since it said it makes 8 pretzels. What it doesn't say is that it makes 8 Paul Bunyan size pretzels. So the first 1/2 of the dough, I made 8 super large pretzels, then I made 20 smaller ones with the remaining half of the dough, and that's how I'll make them for the party!
Recipe Summary
Difficulty: Intermediate
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Inactive Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 25 minutes Yield: 8 pretzels

1 1/2 cups warm (110 to 115 degrees F) water
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 package active dry yeast
22 ounces all-purpose flour, approximately 4 1/2 cups
2 ounces 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

Combine the water, sugar and kosher salt in the bowl of a stand mixer and sprinkle the yeast on top. Allow to sit for 5 minutes or until the mixture begins to foam. Add the flour and butter and, using the dough hook attachment, mix on low speed until well combined. Change to medium speed and knead until the dough is smooth and pulls away from the side of the bowl, approximately 4 to 5 minutes. Remove the dough from the bowl, clean the bowl and then oil it well with vegetable oil. Return the dough to the bowl, cover with plastic wrap and sit in a warm place for approximately 50 to 55 minutes or until the dough has doubled in size.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Line 2 half-sheet pans with parchment paper and lightly brush with the vegetable oil. Set aside.

Bring the 10 cups of water and the baking soda to a rolling boil in an 8-quart saucepan or roasting pan. In the meantime, turn the dough out onto a slightly oiled work surface and divide into 8 equal pieces. Roll out each piece of dough into a 24-inch rope. Make a U-shape with the rope, holding the ends of the rope, cross them over each other and press onto the bottom of the U in order to form the shape of a pretzel. Place onto the parchment-lined half sheet pan.
Place the pretzels into the boiling water, 1 by 1, for 30 seconds. Remove them from the water using a large flat spatula.

Return to the half sheet pan, brush the top of each pretzel with the beaten egg yolk and water mixture and sprinkle with the pretzel salt. Bake until dark golden brown in color, approximately 12 to 14 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack for at least 5 minutes before serving.


jesstyler said...

nice job! They look amazing ... and I bet they'll be SO tasty with the beer cheese dip :)

Maybe try using a silicone cooking sheet instead of parchment?

TPOX said...

wow!! Those look amazing!! I can't wait to try them!

~Amber~ said...

These look amazing! Soft preztels has to be one of my favorite snack foods. YUM!

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