Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Have you ever eaten those delicious soft pretzels at the mall? You know what I’m talking about…the ones you can smell like a thousand feet away. And the smell is so deliciously intoxicating. And then they are just delicious as they smell! You know that place, right? Anyhow, I was late to that party and I’m pretty upset about it. I had my first pretzel two years ago. What on earth was I doing waiting in the Chinese food line at the food court!? Those pretzels are downright delicious. Which is why, for months, I’ve been meaning to do a pretzel recipe. So here we are, and I can truly say that I have perfected this recipe for you. Why? Because I’ve made it three times in two weeks. Which also means that Cory and I have collectively eaten nearly all 36 of these pretzels. The things I do for my readers.
Truthfully, I’ve tinkered with this recipe a lot. I have a longstanding practice of citing where a recipe originally comes from (on the rare occasion where the recipe is not 100% mine). In this case, the recipe is executed so differently that I really just got inspiration from a blog called Born to Bake Forever, and she got that recipe from another blog called Sally’s Baking Addiction. But you should definitely use this recipe because it is so delicious, and I’ve found a way to give you that buttery flavor you get from those tasty mall pretzels.
P.S. I dare you to eat just one. I couldn’t. My record for eating the least in one sitting was 2.5. Honestly, it was no surprise that I have zero willpower. I’m just making up for lost time!
1 1/2 C luke warm water (anything less than say, 150 degrees is fine. Otherwise you risk killing the yeast!)
1 T sugar
2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
4 C flour, sifted if possible
1 1/2 T canola oil
3 T melted butter, divided into 3
1. Heat oven to 170 degrees.
2. Dissolve sugar in the warm water, then add yeast. Stir for about a minute. It should look like murky water.
3. Add 3 C flour, using a sieve to sift the flour as you add it. Stir. Add one additional cup, also using sieve. If you don’t have a sieve, just try to avoid packing it into the measuring cups.
4. Add 1 T melted butter and canola oil. Stir until incorporated.
5. Knead bread for 3 minutes, or put in Kitchenaid and relax for 3 minutes while the dough hook does the work for you. Modern luxuries are the best.
6. Divide the dough into 12 pieces. I’ve found that the easiest way to do this is to do shape the dough into an 8 x 4 inch shape, cut it into two pieces widthwise, and then cut into 6 pieces lengthwise. Voila! You have 12 pieces. Then roll each piece into a long, round string – about 20 inches. Form into a heart shape, twist the points of the heart and bring them over the bottom of the pretzel. Place on baking sheet and repeat with the other pieces.
7. Run your hand under a faucet until it is damp. Brush the tops of each pretzel with your hand. This will help to keep them from drying out while they rise.
8. Turn off oven. Put the baking sheets into the oven and let rise for 20 minutes.
9. Remove from oven and preheat to 425 degrees. In the meantime, combine 1 T melted butter with 1 egg. Brush on top and sides of each pretzel, and then sprinkle with the desired amount of sea salt.
10. Bake for 8-10 minutes, and then broil for an addition 5 minutes.
11. Melt the last 1 T of butter, and once pretzels are removed from oven immediately brush the tops with the melted butter.
One more dare – wait ten minutes to eat a pretzel. If you can resist these, you can do anything! This is a perfect game day recipe by the way. For instance, you could pop it in the oven right before Sunday’s game and enjoy the gloriousness of eating delicious pretzels while watching the New England Patriots win a spot in the 2015 Superbowl (sorry, I had to!).
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