Thursday, August 9, 2012

Soft Pretzel

12 Pretzels

1  Tablespoon sugar
1  package yeast
1  cup warm water (90°)
1  Tablespoon butter
1  teaspoon salt
2 1/2 - 3  cups flour
3  cups water
3  Tablespoons baking soda
1  Tablespoon water
1  egg white
coarse salt

1.  In a large bowl, proof the yeast by stirring together the sugar, yeast and 1/2  cup of warm water. Let proof for 10 minutes.
2.  In a small pan, heat the remaining 1/2  cup water and the butter until warm but not boiling.
3.  When the yeast is proofed, stir in the heated water and butter mixture and the salt.
4.  Add in the flour, 1  cup at a time, being sure to blend well after each cup until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl.
5.  On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes.
6.  Place dough into an oiled bowl.   
7.  Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 45 - 60 minutes.
8.  Preheat oven to 400°.
9.  Divide dough into 12 pieces. 
10.  Roll each piece into a 16 inch rope; form a pretzel. Let rise until light, about 20 minutes.
11.  In a 2 quart saucepan, combine the 3  cups water and 3  Tablespoon baking soda; bring to a boil.
12.  Drop pretzels in the water that is just boiling, 1 pretzel at a time, cooking for 5 seconds on each side. 
13.  Remove the pretzel from the water with a slotted spoon; being sure to drain well.
14.  Place pretzels onto parchment paper lined cookie sheets.
15.  Combine the 1  Tablespoon water and the egg white in a small bowl.  
16.   Whip the egg whites up with a fork.
17.  Brush egg white mixture onto the pretzels. 
18.  Sprinkle with coarse salt. 
19.  Bake at 400° for 9 - 12 minutes or until golden brown.
20.  Immediately remove from cookie sheet.

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