Soft pretzels are one of my favourite treats, but I tend to forget how much I love them… Until I’m walking through the mall and I smell them. Then I suddenly get a craving for the soft, buttery, and tasty snack.
At first the prospect of making them was a bit intimidating. I rarely work with yeast, and what’s the deal with putting them into a pot of boiling water?!
But don’t worry.
They’re actually a lot easier than I thought – and the finished product is totally worth it.
Just look at them, isn’t your mouth just watering away?
I brought some into work, and people loved them!
My boss was trying to tell me that stuffed with some cheese and jalapeno peppers was the only way they could have been better… He’s not exactly a baker so I don’t think I’m going to start taking baking tips from him just yet.
But really, bake some cheese on these, and they’ll be mindblowing.
Here’s how to make them:
4 1/2 to 5 cups all purpose flour – I used closer to 4 1/2!
1 1/2 cups lukewarm water
1/2 cup warm milk
2 tsp salt
1 tbsp yeast
1 tsp sugar
Butter for the top – as much as you would like
Kosher sea salt for sprinkling
5 tbsp baking soda
Using a large bowl (Preferably the one that you use with your mixer, because this is the bowl that the dough will eventually be mixed in) combine the water and yeast and still until it’s combined.
In a different bowl, mix the salt, sugar, and flour together, then you can toss this in with the yeast and water.
Using the dough hook, mix this until it’s not sticky anymore. During this step I had to put a little bit more flour into the bowl just so it wasn’t sticking to the edges of the bowl.
If you have another large bowl, grease it and place the dough into and cover with a damp towel. One of the largest bowls I have is the one that goes with my mixer, so I just put the dough onto a sheet of parchment paper while I washed and greased the bowl, then put it back in there covered with a damp paper towel.
After about an hour, the dough should have doubled in size and is ready for you to work with it.
Divide the dough into 9 pieces (the recipe should make 9 pretzels).
Roll the dough into long pieces, about 3/4 inch thick. Personally, I found it easier when I didn’t flour the surface I used – but it all depends what surface you’re using.
Shape the dough into a pretzel shape and place it onto a greased cookie sheet – wait about 15 more minutes for the dough to rise a bit more.
Preheat your oven to 500 degrees.
In a large pot, boil some water and the baking soda. Once it’s boiling, using either a spoon or spatula, lower a pretzel into the water and let it stay in there for 30-60 seconds.
Once the dough has been removed from the water, brush butter on top and sprinkle the salt.
Based on the size of my pretzels, I fit 3-5 on the tray at one time. It all depends on the size of the pretzels that you’re making.
Bake them for about 10 minutes, or until they look golden brown and done.
After removing them from the oven, I brushed more butter on top of them.
While they’re kind of messy to make, they’re definitely worth it in the end!
You can blow everyone away with your baking skills when you share them with people.
Recipe adapted from Jo Cooks