Friday, March 4, 2011

Soft Pretzels

I love blogs! They have revolutionized my meal planning. I use Google reader to keep up with several blogs I really like. I love that I have other people who like to cook and bake submit their projects to me with pictures all the time. I find so many ideas that I never would have thought of on my own. For example, I found this recipe here. I'm not a huge soft pretzel fan but I do like them. I'm not usually willing to dish out the cash to buy them at the mall. Come to find out, my boys have never had a soft pretzel. I have officially failed as a parent... but not really. Today I did one better. We made them ourselves! They're not nearly as hard as I had imagined. I'm pretty sure we'll be making these again sometime.

1 ½ c. very warm water
1 Tbsp. yeast
¼ c. sugar
3-4 cups flour
4 T. baking soda
10 cups water
1 egg white
¼ c. coarse kosher salt

Preheat oven to 475 degrees
In a large bowl, whisk together water and yeast. Stir in the sugar and set aside 1-2 minutes until the mixture is foamy. Stir in 3 cups of the flour.
Set the extra water in a pot to boil.
Begin kneading the dough, adding additional flour until it is soft, but not at all sticky.
On a lightly floured surface, roll a palm-sized ball of dough into a long rope, approximately 12 inches long.
Twist into a ribbon shape. Twist again.
Pull upper loop down over the bottom them pull the 2 end pieces through and secure by pinching.
Gently tug the pretzel out, keeping the dough from getting too fat at any point.  Set aside on a lightly floured surface and allow to rise slightly while you finish twisting the other pretzels.
Our shapes were nowhere near perfect but they were still delicious!
Place pretzels in the boiling water for 10 seconds on each side. I found having a spoon in each hand helped to flip the pretzel (they are VERY slippery when wet).
Remove. Brush with egg white and sprinkle with salt. Bake for 10 minutes.
Serve warm.
We made 9 pretzels with this recipe but a few of them were HUGE so you could probably get more out of it.

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