Soft pretzels

Here's a fun recipe to try at home while the kids are out of school. 

The Kitchen Paper
Why travel to the mall when you can make these soft pretzels at home?

Soft pretzels were one of the very first real yeasty “bread” recipes I ever made, and one of the first recipes on The Kitchen Paper.

I’d never made pretzels before, but I knew they were fairly simple. After browsing a few different recipes, and watching Joy the Baker’s excellent video, I jumped right in. Easy stuff — and relatively quick! In a couple of hours I was munching on chewy, salty, mustardy goodness — and was all the happier because of it.

I’m such a sucker for soft pretzels. This dough recipe can be loaded up with any topping – cinnamon sugar, icing, mustard, everything mix — whatever you want. Just make sure to brush with the egg, sprinkle liberally (including salt! always salt!), then bake to perfection.

Surprisingly, these pretzels don’t take very long at all. With a 45-minute rise, then a boil and a bake, you can have fresh soft pretzels in just over an hour!

Soft Pretzels

1-1/2 cups warm (110 to 115 degrees F.) water
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons salt
2-1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
22 ounces all-purpose flour, about 4-1/2 cups
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
8 cups water
1/4 cup baking soda
1 egg, beaten with 2 tablespoons milk
Pretzel toppings, including salt, smoked salt, cinnamon sugar, or anything you can dream of!

1. Combine warm water, sugar, and yeast in a large mixing bowl and allow to proof for 5 minutes.

2. When the mixture is foamy, add the flour, salt, and melted butter all at once. Mix with a dough hook, or knead by hand, for 5 minutes or until the dough is smooth and firm to the touch. Dough should not be sticky.

3. Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover, and let rise for 45 minutes, or until the dough has doubled in size.

4. Remove the risen dough from the bowl, and divide into 8 equal pieces. Roll each piece into a 24-inch rope, shape into a pretzel, and then place on a parchment-lined cookie sheet.

5. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

6. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add baking soda, and then carefully boil each pretzel. They will puff up a bit, so make sure not to overcrowd your pot. I did two at a time, for about 60 seconds on each side.

7. When they are done boiling, remove the pretzels from the water gently and place them on the parchment-lined cookie sheet.

8. Lightly brush with the egg/milk mixture, and immediately top with your chosen seasonings. Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until they’re browned and cracking open. Allow to cool slightly before serving.

Related post on The Kitchen Paper: Apple pecan cinnamon rolls

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to