Our readers speak and we listen! As you all know by now, King Arthur Flour is one of the sponsors of our blog anniversary series, “A Homemade Holiday” and is also sponsoring an exciting giveaway with more than $70 in fabulous products for your kitchen. The mandatory entry for that giveaway is to select a recipe from their website that you would like to see demonstrated, here at Busy-at-Home. The response has been amazing and I’m as excited as all of you to try some of these recipes. One of the top requests has been for the Hot Buttered Pretzels; so today, I decided to share our first attempt at making our own pretzels at home. After eating them, I can promise you it won’t be the last attempt.
The batch only makes eight, so I felt confident that I wasn’t really wasting anything if they didn’t turn out, but, as it happens, there was absolutely nothing to worry about. They are heavenly!!! My youngest and I are actually going to make another batch this evening, because this first one was gobbled up in seconds.
Hot Buttered Pretzels would be a delicious and impressive snack for a boardgames and cards game night get-together or for watching the game on your big screen at home. Do your friends like snacking when you get together for a movie night? Give them some authentic, warm pretzel goodness. I promise a plate of these at your next potluck will disappear faster than any other fingerfood on the table! No one will believe you made them yourself and you won’t believe how simple and inexpensive they are to prepare. I guesstimated that I spent fifty cents or less to make one batch of 8. That’s just a little over six cents per pretzel! Don’t you love being frugal AND awesome!!!??!!!
Hot Buttered Pretzels
- 2 1/2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 2 1/4 teaspoons regular instant yeast
- 7/8 to 1 cup warm water*
*Remember, humidity can dramatically affect the moisture level in your bread dough. Use the greater amount of water in the winter, the lesser amount in the summer, and somewhere in between in the spring and fall. Your goal is a soft dough that isn’t sticky.
- 1/2 cup warm water
- 2 Tablespoons baking soda
- coarse, kosher or pretzel salt
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
Put all the dough ingredients into your heavy-duty stand mixer. I actually used the full cup of water, today. I mixed the ingredients into a soft dough and then set my kitchen timer for 5 minutes, letting the machine knead the dough for me. You can do the same thing mixing and kneading by hand, if you prefer.
Once the dough is kneaded, form it into a ball, dust the ball lightly with flour and place it in a one gallon zip-top bag to rest and rise for 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes, remove the risen dough from the bag and place it on a lightly oiled counter top.
I used a knife and cut the dough round into 8 equal-sized wedges, leaving the wedges to rest for 5 minutes.
While the dough rested, I mixed the warm water and baking soda in a shallow bowl. The most difficult part of this process was getting the baking soda to thoroughly dissolve in the water and I ended up using 1 cup of water instead of 1/2 cup, which seemed to do the trick.
After the wedges rest for five minutes, roll each wedge into a long rope and then twist the ropes into a pretzel shape.
Begin by looping the left end of your rope underneath the rest of the rope.
Next, take the right end of the rope and pull it through the loop you made in the first step, draping the end over the bottom of the first loop.
Dip your formed pretzel into the soda water bath and then place on a greased cookie sheet. (The recipe said to bake the pretzels on two cookie sheets, which I did, but next time, I think they would easily fit on one.)
Sprinkle the pretzels with coarse sea salt. Allow to rest and rise for 10 minutes.
Bake at 500° for 8 or nine minutes, or until golden brown. If you use one cookie sheet, you can just let them go the full time. However, if you use two sheets, as suggested in the original King Arthur Flour recipe, you will need to rotate your cookie sheets half way through the baking time. I put two racks at the center levels in my oven and after 4 minutes, switched the top tray to the bottom rack and the tray from the bottom rack to the top and continued baking for another 5 minutes.
Brush the tops with the melted butter.
Enjoy the deliciously, soft and chewy, perfection that is homemade pretzels! Delish!