Monday, March 3, 2014

Soft Homemade Pretzels with Sea Salt

Have you ever pinned something that you are DYING to try but somehow always forget to buy the ONE ingredient you need to make it? too.  After 4 trips to the grocery store and each time forgetting to buy yeast (I know, right?)...I realized I had an issue.  And when I FINALLY remembered to put the darn thing into my cart, I knew I had to make the pretzels immediately.  And let me tell you, they are deliciously soft and salty, everything I was hoping they would be! And if you like to dip things....this recipe is a home-run! Here is what you will need:

  • Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups warm water
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 1/4 tsp instant yeast
  • 22 oz all-purpose flour, approximately 4 1/2 cups
  • 2 oz unsalted butter, melted
  • 10 cups water
  • 2/3 cup baking soda
  • 2 tbsp butter, melted
  • Pretzel, Kosher, or course sea salt

  1. To make the pretzel dough: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix together the water, sugar, yeast, and salt on low speed for 10 seconds. Switch to the dough hook and add the flour and butter. 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 and transfer it to a lightly oiled bowl. Cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap and set it in a warm place for approximately 50 to 55 minutes or until the dough has doubled in size. (I just stuck mine in a warm oven)
  2. Turn the dough out onto a lightly oiled work surface and divide it into 8 equal pieces. Roll out each piece of dough into a 24-inch rope. Place a barely damp towel over the dough and the formed pretzels to prevent them from drying out while you form the other pretzels.
  3. At this point, you can freeze the formed pretzels on the baking sheets. Once completely frozen, transfer them to a large zipper bag and continue to freeze until you need them. Use within 2 months.
  4. To make the pretzels: Preheat the oven to 425° F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
  5. Bring the 10 cups of water and the baking soda to a rolling boil in an wide 8-quart saucepan or roasting pan. 
  6. Using a spatula (or fine-mesh basket), gently lower the pretzels into the boiling water and boil them for 30 seconds.Depending on the size of your pot, boil 2 to 4 pretzels at a time. Remove the pretzels from the water using the spatula, drain as best you can over the pot, and place them on the baking sheets. Brush the top of each pretzel with some melted butter and sprinkle with the pretzel/Kosher/sea salt. Bake until dark golden brown in color, approximately 12 to 14 minutes. 
  7. Enjoy with any dipping sauce of your choosing!

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