The other day Gavin requested that I make soft pretzels. I was a little nervous about this because I’m not great with dough (and it’s such a commitment to make bread/dough, especially if it doesn’t turn out…what a disappointment), but I stepped up to the challenge. The result was that Alton Brown’s recipe is pretty easy and doesn’t take forever to do! Gavin ate these so quickly, that I had to make the recipe again later on that week.
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour, 55 minutes
Yield: 8 pretzels
- 1-1/2 cups Warm water (between 100-110 F)
- 1 TBSP Sugar
- 2 tsp Kosher Salt
- 1 package Active Dry Yeast
- 4-1/2 cups Flour
- 2 oz Butter, melted
- Vegetable Oil
- 10 cups Water
- 2/3 cup Baking Soda
- 1 Egg Yolk
- Combine the water, sugar and kosher salt in the bowl of a stand mixer and sprinkle the yeast on top. Allow to sit for 5 minutes or until the mixture begins to foam.
- Add the flour and butter and, using the dough hook attachment, mix on low speed until well combined. Change to medium speed and knead until the dough is smooth and pulls away from the side of the bowl, approximately 4-5 minutes. Remove the dough from the bowl, clean the bowl and then oil it well with vegetable oil. Return the dough to the bowl, cover with plastic wrap and sit in a warm place for approximately 50-55 minutes or until the dough has doubled in size.
- Preheat the oven to 450 F. Line 2 half-sheet pans with parchment paper and lightly brush with the vegetable oil. Set aside.
- Bring the 10 cups of water and the baking soda to a rolling boil in an 8-quart saucepan or roasting pan.
- In the meantime, turn the dough out onto a slightly oiled work surface and divide into 8 equal pieces. Roll out each piece of dough into a 24-inch rope. Make a U-shape with the rope, holding the ends of the rope, cross them over each other and press onto the bottom of the U in order to form the shape of a pretzel. Place onto the parchment-lined half sheet pan.
- Place the pretzels into the boiling water, one at a time, for 30 seconds. Remove them from the water using a large flat spatula. Return to the half sheet pan.
- Beat egg yolk with 1 TBSP water in a small bowl. Brush the top of each pretzel with the beaten egg yolk and water mixture and sprinkle with salt.
- Bake until dark golden brown in color, approximately 12 to 14 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack for at least 5 minutes before serving.