I don’t post enough savory things, and that doesn’t make sense because my penchant for sodium is about as strong as my sweet tooth. This throwback* post on soft pretzel bites is my attempt to balance things out a bit.
Judging by the big chunks of salt in the picture, it oughta do the trick.
My saliva memory is reminding me that these pretzel bites were delicious. I also remember being really excited after making them, because they marked my first time baking with yeast. At the time, I thought I opened a big door into bread-making, but I barely made a crack. The whole waiting-an-hour-for-dough-to-rise thing tests my patience much too much, but I’m open to giving it another shot.
I’ve found that I’ve been much more outgoing lately. I did something social on Saturday night, but quickly erased any good that did me when I stayed in on Sunday and watched 6 back-to-back episodes of Orange is the New Black (so good), but still. Not having to go to school this month probably has something to do with my newfound extrovertedness. This morning, for a good seven minutes, I even considered asking my boyfriend to take me golfing.
But back to the recipe at hand. The original instructions call for making traditional, big, New York-style pretzels, but since I knew I couldn’t possibly execute a decent looking full-sized pretzel, I went with smaller bite-sized ones instead, and it turned out really well, but please do with your dough as you please (ha!).
Whatever you decide, don’t forget dipping sauce. I prefer processed cheese, naturally.
- 1 1/2 cups warm (110 to 115 degrees F) water
- 1 Tablespoon sugar
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 package active dry yeast
- 22 ounces all-purpose flour, approximately 4 1/2 cups
- 2 ounces unsalted butter, melted
- Vegetable oil for pan
- 10 cups water
- 2/3 cup baking soda
- 1 large egg yolk beaten with 1 tablespoon water
- Pretzel salt
- Combine the water, sugar and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer and sprinkle the yeast on top. Allow to sit for 5 minutes or until the mixture begins to foam. Add the flour and butter and, using the dough hook attachment, 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, clean the bowl and then oil it well with vegetable oil. Return the dough to the bowl, cover with plastic wrap and sit in a warm place for approximately 1 hour or until the dough has doubled in size.
- Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and lightly brush with the vegetable oil. Set aside.
- Bring the 10 cups of water and the baking soda to a rolling boil in an 8-quart saucepan or roasting pan.
- In the meantime, turn the dough out onto a slightly oiled work surface and divide into smaller pretzel-bite pieces. Place onto the parchment-lined cookie sheet.
- Place the pretzels into the boiling water one at a time for 30 seconds each. Remove them from the water using a large flat spatula. Return to the half sheet pan, brush the top of each pretzel with the beaten egg yolk and water mixture and sprinkle with the pretzel salt.
- Bake until dark golden brown in color, approximately 12 to 14 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack and let cool before serving.