Wednesday, September 26, 2012

From the Kitchen: Homemade Soft Pretzel Recipe

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Oh, hello. Pretzel, anyone?

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I found this recipe on the King Arthur flour website. If you haven’t been over there to see the amazing selection of recipes, you really should. So many winners. They are called “Hot Buttered Soft Pretzels”, but I skip the buttering for thigh-related reasons, and they are still amazing.

Homemade Soft Pretzels

Ingredients:

Dough:

  • 2 1/2 cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast
  • 7/8 to 1 cup warm water

Topping:

  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 2 tablespoons baking soda
  • coarse, kosher or pretzel salt, optional

Directions:

Place all of the dough ingredients into a bowl, and beat until well-combined. Knead the dough, by hand or machine, for about 5 minutes, until it's soft, smooth, and quite slack. Flour the dough and place it in a bag, and allow it to rest for 30 minutes.

While the dough is resting, prepare the topping: Combine the boiling water and baking soda, stirring until the soda is totally (or almost totally) dissolved. Set the mixture aside to cool to lukewarm (or cooler).

Preheat your oven to 475°F. Prepare a baking sheet by spraying it with vegetable oil spray, or lining it with parchment paper.

Transfer the dough to a lightly greased work surface, and divide it into eight equal pieces.

Allow the pieces to rest, uncovered, for 5 minutes. Pour the baking soda/water into a 9" square pan.

Roll each piece of dough into a long, thin rope (about ~ 30" long), and twist each rope into a pretzel. Working with 2 pretzels at a time, place them in the pan with the baking soda/water, spooning the water over their tops; leave them in the water for 2 minutes before placing them on the baking sheet. This baking soda "bath" will give the pretzels a nice, golden-brown color.

Transfer the pretzels to the prepared baking sheet. Sprinkle them lightly with salt, if desired. Allow them to rest, uncovered, for 10 minutes.

Bake the pretzels for 8 to 9 minutes, or until they're golden brown.

Remove the pretzels from the oven. Eat the pretzels warm, or reheat them in an oven or microwave.

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Mmmm… pretzels.

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