Minnesota Cooking: Soft Bavarian-Style Pretzels (Using Bread-Machine Dough)
I made a homemade pizza the other day and vowed that I'd make soft pretzels on my next venture. Well, today was the day. The game was on, and we were expecting to snack on light foods anyways.
So, I followed the instructions for the pretzel dough. The bread machine tells you to pile the ingredients in the bread machine in a certain order. First, the water goes in. The water temperature needs to be 80 degrees. The easiest way to get it close is to put warm water in the metal pan, put a thermometer in the pan, and assemble your other ingredients while the water temperature drops. As soon as the temperature dropped to 94 degrees, I started getting ready to toss my ingredients in with the water.
First, I separated an egg. The whites were saved in a bowl and retained for the outside coating. The yolk was dropped into the water. Sugar, salt, flour, and yeast. The yeast is added last and sits on the top of the flour. The sugar is the food for the yeast, but it cannot touch until the machine is started.
Since my machine does dough, the machine starts and runs for up to an hour and a half, but will beep in the middle of it for me to remove the ball of dough. The dough does not need to stay in there for the entire time.
- 1 dough ball water, salt, yolk, sugar, flour, yeast
- 1/4 cup baking soda
- 8 cups water
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 egg white plus 1 teaspoon water
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon seasoned salt
- Use bread machine to make the dough. Pull it out when timer beeps. Cut into 8 pieces. Make a rope and cross, twist and lay flat.
- In large pan, mix water, brown sugar and baking soda. When it comes to a boil, add three pretzels and cook for at least 30 seconds. Remove and place on parchment paper on a pan.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Take your egg whites and water mixture and pour onto the pretzels. Be sure to move the pretzels around in the egg whites and place on a greased, round baking pan.
- Sprinkle a little Seafood Boil on each pretzel and grind some sea salt on each one. Bake for 15 - 18 minutes until pretzels are browned nicely.
I was pleased that the process was as easy as it was, and I was thankful my pretzels cooperated.
I used a combination of techniques. I mixed the dough in the bread machine using the bread machine's recipe. I used another recipe to boil the pretzels in a baking soda, water, and brown sugar mixture. This adds a certain amount of color to the dough and sets the egg yolk inside the pretzel and creates the chewy bounce that we all know and love.
Then, the egg whitewash is applied to the outside of the pretzel and they are salted on a greased sheet. Then, placed in a 375-degree oven until golden brown color. This took me about 17 minutes.