Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Gratituesday: Pretzels

http://www.flickr.com/photos/13101664@N03/4679594989
The first two days of this week have gone by slowly, and it seems like everyone I know is on vacation or about to be, so today really called for some pretzels.  I first had these when my parents were breaking in their new KitchenAid mixer, and was shocked that there was no butter in the recipe at all.  These pretzels are amazing, tasting just like those really greasy ones from the mall, and so easy to make.  I hardly ever cook on weekdays, so for me to put together something that needs to rise was a bit of a miracle, and also a testament to how simple they are.  They hardly take any effort at all, especially if you have a stand-up mixer, and the pretzels turn out absolutely perfect every time.

Although I can't say if they'll make the rest of my week move any faster, they definitely helped improve my mood this evening, and for this Gratituesday, that's enough.

Soft Pretzels (from AllRecipes)

  • 4 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 1 teaspoon white sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
  • 5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup baking soda
  • 4 cups hot water
  • 1/4 cup kosher salt, for topping [I use way, way less, & you can also try cinnamon/sugar!]
  1. In a small bowl, dissolve yeast and 1 teaspoon sugar in warm water. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together flour, 1/2 cup sugar, and salt. Make a well in the center; add the oil and yeast mixture. Mix and form into a dough. If the mixture is dry, add one or two tablespoons of water. Knead the dough until smooth, about 7 to 8 minutes. Lightly oil a large bowl, place the dough in the bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  3. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C). In a large bowl, dissolve baking soda in hot water.
  4. When risen, turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and divide into 12 equal pieces. Roll each piece into a rope and twist into a pretzel shape. Once all of the dough is all shaped, dip each pretzel into the baking soda solution and place on a greased baking sheet. Sprinkle with kosher salt.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 8 minutes, until browned. 

Honey Mustard

I serve these with honey mustard, which is extremely simple: mix together 1/2 a cup of mayonnaise with a 1/4 cup honey and 2 tablespoons of dijon mustard.  It makes a ton and it's seriously the best dip ever.  
Even though they taste best fresh, I've brought cooled pretzels and this dip to parties before and it's been a big hit!

2 comments:

  1. oh no...this looks way too doable for me to resist! These would be perfect for a snack for The Masters this weekend (guilty golf fan)! I love you "gratituesday" title - so cute!

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  2. Soft pretzels are one of my favorite things.

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