Thursday, September 23, 2010

Soft Pretzels

It's been a long time since I have done a post here. I am still trying new recipes and taking pictures of them. It is just hard to keep up with this blog on top of my others. I will try and make a greater effort to post :)

I LOVE soft pretzels! I will stop off and get pretzel bites when I am in the mall. I will sometimes buy a box of the frozen ones so I can have a pretzel whenever I want. They just aren't as good as a fresh out of the oven pretzel. I saw this recipe and enlisted the help of my husband to make this tasty treat (he has way more patience for dough than I do).

Soft Pretzels
Makes 16 small or 8 large pretzels
You will need:
  • 1 envelope active dry yeast
  • 1 1/2 cups very warm water (~110 degrees)
  • 1 T sugar
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 T water
  • course salt if desired for topping
In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in the warm water. Stir in the sugar and salt until completely dissolved. Add in the flour (I add half then stir and then the other half) and mix well. Turn onto a floured surface. Knead for 5 minutes. Divide dough into 8 or 16 equal pieces. Roll each section into a strip. You may need to let the dough rest for a little bit if the roll wants to shrink back up. Shape into pretzels and place on a well-greased baking sheet. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Beat the egg yolk with 1T water and brush onto pretzels. Sprinkle with salt if desired. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm (and with cheese!).

To whip up a simple cheese, I heat 1/2 cup hard apple cider and one minced clove of garlic until simmering. Meanwhile I toss one to one and half cups shredded cheese (whatever I have on hand, this time it was Colby jack) with one Tablespoon flour. Stir into cider. Continue stirring until all the cheese is melted through. Add in 1 or 2 T diced jalapenos for more of a nacho cheese flavor. Season with pepper to taste.

Our kitty loves to watch us cook, especially if she can smell Crisco.

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