Twisted in knots

There are several varieties of pretzels, including soft pretzels, which should be eaten shortly after they are baked and hard-baked pretzels, which obviously have a longer shelf life. For me soft pretzels are the ultimate beet snack. Paul (my better half) would argue that point because he loves buffalo wings with his beer but every Super Bowl Sunday, he always requests that I make soft pretzels with mustard for dipping.
There are many different dough recipes you can use to make your pretzels, I like to use a smaller version of my pizza dough recipe but if you are not comfortable making your own dough, you can even buy store bought pizza dough to make your pretzels. I guarantee once you make these,  you will ask yourself why you hadn’t done this before.

My Super Bowl Sunday soft pretzel

IMG_E2340

Here is what you will need:

  • 2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tbs EVOO
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour + up to 1/2 cup more if needed
  • 6 cups of warm water
  • 1/3 cup baking soda
  • 2 eggs lightly beaten
  • Course salt for sprinkling

How to make the pretzels:

  • In a large bowl of an electric mixer add the warm water, yeast and sugar. Mix and let proof until foamy, about 5 minutes.
  • Fitted with a dough hook and on speed 2, add the EVOO and slowly add in the flour and salt until well combined and forms a dough. Kneed until the dough forms a ball. Place in a lightly greased bowl and cover with a plastic wrap or a damp cloth. Let dough rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 1/2 hour.
  • Preheat oven to 425°F. Cover the baking sheets with parchment paper and one baking sheet with a wire rack. Once dough has doubled in size, divide into 12 equal portions. Work with one portion at a time and place the other portions of dough back into the greased bowl and cover with the damp cloth until ready to use.
  • Roll and stretch a portion of dough into a 18-inch rope with your hands, working from the center to the ends. Twist the rope into a pretzel shape.
  • In a large pot, bring 6 cups water and ⅓ cup baking soda to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and  place the pretzels into the hot baking soda (you will have to work in batches), for about 30 seconds each side, and then transfer to the wire rack. Repeat process until all your pretzels have been placed in the baking soda water. Transfer all the pretzels to the parchment-lined baking sheets.
  • Whisk together the egg and a splash water. Brush the egg wash on the tops and sides of the pretzels and sprinkle with coarse salt.
  • Bake for 15 – 20 minutes until the pretzels are a beautiful golden brown.
  • Serve with a variety of mustard’s such as regular, whole grain, dijon or even wasabi mustard.

I hope this recipe inspires you to be creative in your kitchen – enjoy!

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