soft pretzels

This was my first venture with yeast, and I am happy to report that it wasn’t a complete disaster. I’m not sure it was a complete success either, I think my house was too cold for the dough to rise completely. I think I’ll have to try again, on a warmer day.
from Food Network magazine
1 cup milk
1 package active dry yeast
3 tbs light brown sugar, packed
2 1/4 cups all purpose flour, plus more for kneading
2 tbs unsalted butter, diced and softened, plus a little more for buttering pretzels
1 tsp fine salt
1/3 cup baking soda
2 tbs coarse salt
1. Warm the milk in a saucepan until it reaches 110 degrees on a candy thermometer. Pour into a medium bowl and sprinkle in the yeast. Let the yeast soften, for about 2 minutes.
2. With a wooden spoon, stir in the brown sugar and 1 cup flour. Stir butter into mix. Add the rest of the flour and salt, and mix into a sticky dough.
3. Lightly flour kneading surface and turn the dough out on it. Knead until smooth, but slightly still tacky, adding more flour, if necessary (5 minutes). Form into a ball, place in a lightly greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm (this is key) spot for about an hour, or until is has doubled in size.
4. Preheat oven to 450 degrees and grease a large baking sheet. Punch the dough to deflate it and turn back out onto lightly floured surface. Divide the dough into 6 pieces. Roll and stretch each piece to make 30 inch ropes. Hold the end of each rope and twist into pretzel shape.
5. Dissolve the baking soda in 3 cups of warm water in a shallow dish. Dip each pretzel in the water, place on baking sheet, and sprinkle with salt.
6. Bake for 10-12 minutes, until golden.  Remove from oven and rub with butter.  (FN mag called for waaaaay more butter, but to cut some of that, I did it this way.)

I might try these again, on a warmer day, and if I’m feeling really brave, I might even go for some cinnamon sugar!
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2 Responses to soft pretzels

  1. Colleen says:

    These look great, even if they didn’t rise as much as you wanted them to!

  2. Mmmm...Tastes Good says:

    To let the dough rise you can put the bowl (still cover it with the saran wrap) in your oven and turn the oven light on. It will be free from drafts and allow the dough to rise. 🙂

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