Bread

Homemade Pretzels

2011-recipe-challenge-take-3

Oh I couldn’t wait to get typing on this post after trying out the most moist, perfectly crispy and buttery pretzels I have ever put in my mouth. No I didn’t grab a pretzel from Aunt Annies or the bread shop. I made my own from a very simple recipe by Alton Brown and it was killer good. In fact, they were so good and so easy that I plan to make little pretzel dogs for my son Grant’s birthday party in April.

I think I might be addicted. As I am writing this post I already have m my second batch of pretzel dough waiting to rise in the kitchen. This time around I am going to make cheesy jalapeño pretzels rolls instead of the regular twist and cute little pretzels nuggets with cream cheese inside! You know I used to see people making homemade pretzels all the time on blogs and in magazine and I always thought to myself- LIARS! IT CAN”T BE THAT EASY AND TURN OUT THAT GOOD! I stand corrected! I am the first to admit when I am wrong and I was wrong! It really is that easy and everyone who makes them aren’t liars. LOL!  Now the confidence to actually get in the kitchen and try homemade pretzels on your own is another issue. An issue that not until this year have I made myself get over and simply suck it up! That makes me think of this quote that I love by Peter T. Mcintyre

“Confidence comes not from always being right but from not fearing to be wrong”


Before we get to the other amazing dishes each of you sent in this month I want to tell you that their are many ways out there to make pretzels. Some recipes call for you to boil the dough before baking, soak the dough before baking, spritze the dough or just plainly pop it in the oven. I am here to attest to the Alton Brown method and that is to boil the pretzel dough first then bake. I tried not doing this the first time around because well, its simply easier to skip an extra step but the pretzels turned out a little chewier and harder than I had wanted. So I went with the extra step of boiling and it made all the difference in the world. The recipe is really so easy- don’t be afraid of a little pot of water-so to speak! LOL!

Again, if you weren’t able to get your pictures in on time,please please feel free to join us next month for our fourth installment of the 2011 Recipe Challenge. It just keeps getting better and better!

#1. Jennifer from Peas and Crayons with General TSO’s Tofu and Fried Rice!

#2. Sauteed Tilapia with Lemon Caper Butter Sauce by Christina from C&C Marriage Factory

#3. Joan from Foodalogue with her Low-Fat, Free form Lasagna

#4. Pulled Pork- Crock Pot Style by Kelli from Southern Blessed Life

#5. Monster Cookies by Alli from Ali-n-son


#6. Ground Beef Cup with Peas and Shitake Mushrrom Gravy by Sharlene from Main Stream Solar Cooking

#7. Mouth watering Citrus Tart from Itsy’s Kitchen

#8. Olive Oil and Coconut Brownies by Sharlene at Small Town Oven

#9. Zesty & Creamy Penne with Herb Baked Chicken By Ruth from The G.R.I.T.S tale

#10. Shrimp Pad Thai by Lindsay from Life of A Charleston Wife

#11. Shea from BonChic Gastronomique made this fabulous homemade Chicken and Noodle Dish

#12. Outrageous Tiramisu from Sara at Cooking with Sara

#13. Rivki from Healthy Eating for Ordinary People has won me over with her Creamy Sauteed Daikon

#14. Daphene from More than Words made one of all time loves- Banana Brown Sugar Ice Cream!

#15. Stephanie from Scrumptious with her Roasted Beet, Citrus, Mint, Goat Cheese and Walnut Salad

#16.  Cheesy Potato Soup loaded with goodness from Melissa at Melissa’s Cuisine!

#17. My good friend Torrie from A Place to Share has shared her Meatloaf Sliders & Oven-Fried Chicken Satay with us!


#18. Mary from Life in A Small Town made a delicious meal by the Pioneer Woman called Butter Chicken!

#19. Anna from Mama’s Messages made one fine plate of Chicken Fried Steak (courtesy of yours truly) and her own version of mashed potatoes!


#20.  Goat Cheese Stuffed Spinach Pancakes by Chaya over at BizzyBakes!

#21.  I love Coconut! Hannah from Hannah and Bryan made Espresso Ganache Dipped Coconut Macaroons

#22. Kelly from Dressing Mommy has been sick this week but she still managed to pull off her Masoor Dal with rice and Paratha (Indian stuffed bread).

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Homemade Pretzels

Adapted from Alton Brown’s Homemade Soft Pretzels and A Dash of Sass

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups warm water

1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 package dry rapid rise yeast
4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
10 cups water
2/3 cup baking soda*
1 large egg yolk, beaten with 1 tablespoon water
Pretzel salt (or kosher salt), for topping
8 hot dogs, cut in half

Directions:

– Combine the warm water, sugar and kosher salt in the bowl of a stand mixer and sprinkle the yeast on top. Let the mixture sit for about 5 minutes, until the yeast is foamy and begins to smell of yeast.
– Add the flour and butter to the yeast mixture. Attach the dough hook to the stand mixer and, on medium-low speed, combine the mixture until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and appears shiny, roughly 4 to 5 minutes.
– Spray a large bowl with non-stick spray (or lightly grease with vegetable oil) and place dough in greased bowl. Cover with plastic wrap. Place bowl in a warm area (near the oven, perhaps) and let dough rise for about 1 hour, or until doubled in size.
– Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper. Spray parchment paper with non-stick spray. Set aside.
– In a large pot, bring the 10 cups of water and the baking soda to a roiling boil.
– Place the dough on a greased surface, and divide into 16 equal pieces. Roll each piece into a long rope, roughly 12 inches long. Carefully wrap each piece around a half hot dog. Pinch the ends together to seal the dough. Alternatively, to make regular pretzels, shape the rope into a U shape, cross the ends over each other and fold the twisted ends back onto the bottom of the U. Again, pinch the dough together to form a seal. Place each shaped pretzel on the parchment lined baking sheet.
– Boil the shaped pretzels and pretzel dogs, one at a time, in the baking soda water for 30 seconds each. Using a slotted spatula, remove each pretzel dog from the water and place it on a drying rack to allow any extra baking soda mixture to drip off.
– Place the boiled pretzel dogs back on the parchment lined baking sheets.
– Brush with beaten egg yolk and sprinkle with pretzel or kosher salt.
– Bake until golden brown, roughly 14 to 15 minutes. Transfer pretzel dogs to a cooling rack for a few minutes before serving.

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33 Comments

  1. Joanne

    Ack! I SO meant to submit something but I am the most spastic person on this earth! Next month. Everything looks so good though and I’m so impressed by how people really challenged themselves.

    I’ve made homemade pretzel rolls before and they were AMAZING. I really need to branch out into the world of stuffed pretzels. They sound SO good.

    16 . Mar . 2011
  2. Renee

    I love this post! I so wish I could cook and then i would submit something but for now I will just drool over all the dishes!

    Your pretzels looks AMAZING! PERFECT! Like Aunt Annies!

    16 . Mar . 2011
  3. Alwaysinthekitchen

    How in the world do you find time to make homemade pretzels? your men are so dang lucky. they look utterly delicious

    I love the espresso macaroons. might have to give that a try soon

    16 . Mar . 2011
  4. Food and Senses

    your pretzels looking out of this world! i am so impressed and all of the other dishes look so good too, i am loving the variety and especially that lasagna and pork sliders!

    16 . Mar . 2011
  5. Katherine

    I can’t believe i am seeing these pretzels that look like they are from a food magazine. Amazing- no idea how you do it but amazing. Seriously I want to order some! LOL!

    The rest of the food all looks perfectly insanely delicious. Thanks for sharing so many fun dishes and new ideas

    16 . Mar . 2011
  6. Hillary P.

    I love pretzels and I love pretzel dogs. your son is so lucky to have you as a mom. My mom would have stuck plain old dollar hotdogs in crescent rolls and said here! LOL!

    16 . Mar . 2011
  7. Alley

    Ha! You so had me at homemade pretzels. They look perfect Jess. I wish I would have been over to your house that day. No fair our play date was 3 days later! I love all the other food too. I will have to check out each of their blogs for more ideas!

    16 . Mar . 2011
  8. Joan Nova

    Love those pretzel dogs! Interesting round-up.

    16 . Mar . 2011
  9. Erica

    YUM! Mandi & I made pretzels for our Oktoberfest celebration…so so good! Nothing like a homemade version. And this recipe round up is awesome!! I want to make the monster cookies

    16 . Mar . 2011
  10. Christina

    Mmm, great recipes! Thanks for posting mine! I really need to try those homemade pretzels!

    16 . Mar . 2011
  11. Sharlene

    Thanks so much for including my brownies in this wonderful company! Homemade pretzels are something I’ve always been too afraid to try myself but seeing yours gives me comfort. They look so beautiful!

    16 . Mar . 2011
  12. flip flops & pearls

    Oh Dear God……
    those look incredible!
    YUM

    Don’t forget to share something delish with me Friday!!

    Have a blessed day doll!
    XXOO

    16 . Mar . 2011
  13. daphne

    oh u made it sound like a breeze!! Well done! and thanks for inviting me to the event. I had fun!

    16 . Mar . 2011
  14. anne

    I am SOOOO going to tgive these a try, they look super delicious!! anne

    16 . Mar . 2011
  15. Jenn L @ Peas and Crayons

    Yayyyyyyy! How much yeast is in the packet? I have a packet but want to make sure its the same size serving!!! I am seriously making these TODAY! <3

    16 . Mar . 2011
  16. Maria @ Scandifoodie

    Great selection of dishes!! Sorry I couldn’t make it this time!

    16 . Mar . 2011
  17. Lindsay

    thanks for posting my recipe lady!! i think it is time i work on my photography skillz. 🙂

    16 . Mar . 2011
  18. Melissa

    Oh these look so good!!!! I recently made some homemade pretzels and dogs(the recipe will be up on my blog in the next couple days), but mine don’t look nearly as nice as yours! I have pretzel dogs on the menu again for tomorrow night, I think I’ll be trying your recipe.

    Thanks for hosting and posting my recipe! What a great selection everyone submitted!

    16 . Mar . 2011
  19. Shea

    Those pretzels look amazing. I’m definitely giving those a try! In fact, there’s lots of things here that I want to try! Thanks for hosting this awesome challenge 🙂

    16 . Mar . 2011
  20. Shellie

    YUM on the home-made pretzels. I simply must get the ingredients here so you can whip some up for your dad and I think weekend. 🙂 Everyone else’s dishes look great, too. I think I’m headed to the kitchen!

    16 . Mar . 2011
  21. Torrie @ a place to share...

    So much deliciousness!!

    I am not showing this post to Ryan, or even talking about it… Cause I must surprise him with those pretzels. He loves Alton, and Loves pretzels. And those little pretzel dogs?? Who knew they could look so cute?!?

    And such variety with the recipes here! That’s my absolute favorite part of these exchanges. It’d be fun for all of us to have a twitter chat or something one time!! (#obsessedwithfood)

    ONLY 3 1/2 more hours until I eat “your” corned beef!!!!! {hope today was a brighter day for ya =)

    16 . Mar . 2011
  22. Denine Anderson-Regan

    Oh my goodness – these are awesome!!

    16 . Mar . 2011
  23. stephanie

    i love soft pretzels. yours look SO good. definitely need to make those pretzel dogs for the girlies.

    thanks for including my recipe! xo

    16 . Mar . 2011
  24. Candace

    Jessica, as soon as I get a real kitchen with a stove, I’m going to make these. They look sooo yummy! I make a lot of stuff with my hot plate and toaster oven; but this is a little too much for me to attempt just yet. Thanks for the recipe!

    16 . Mar . 2011
  25. Rivki Locker (Ordinary Blogger)

    Thanks for the roundup! You’ve got some great looking recipes here and the pretzels look AMAZING. Thanks for including me.
    — Rivki @ Healthy Eating for Ordinary People

    16 . Mar . 2011
  26. Mandi

    Hey girl thank u so much for posting my recipe among this stellar company!! Everything here just looks amazing! Your pretzels turned out beautifully! Erica and I tried our hand at homemade pretzels as well for an Oktoberfest get together and we had so much fun with it =) We were totally intimidated by it until we just started getting in there!

    16 . Mar . 2011
  27. Allison @ Alli 'n Son

    Wow, look at all of these recipes! I’m in love with the free-form lasagna.

    I made pretzels like this last year, and actually I’ve been craving them again. And now my craving went into overdrive. I just may make up a batch tomorrow. Pretzels for breakfast, that’s OK, right?

    Thanks for featuring my monster cookies. So honored to be included.

    16 . Mar . 2011
  28. Sara

    Those pretzels look amazing… I have seen that recipe before but have been slightly nervous about trying it, they look so good, I might have to give it a shot today!!

    17 . Mar . 2011
  29. Jenn L @ Peas and Crayons

    I just realized I need a stand mixter to make these! oops =( my wedding registry did not deliver and all I have is a 20 dollar hand mixer from target. boooo

    17 . Mar . 2011
  30. Allison

    I have wanted to try pretzels for so long but, I am scared if they come out half as good as yours did I would eat the either lot. You did a fantastic good and love the pretzel dog. My kids would go nuts for those. I am so impressed and inspired!

    17 . Mar . 2011
  31. Mama K

    Your pretzel dogs look SOOO good!! Yum!! All of these dishes look good. I might try the Goat Cheese Spinach Pancakes! Thanks for posting!

    18 . Mar . 2011
  32. Ruth

    The pretzels look good.
    I can’t wait to check out everyone else’s recipes

    19 . Mar . 2011
  33. Kitchen Belleicious

    jenn- you can so do it with your hands and not stand mixer! living proof because me and my grandmother just did it together! lol!

    19 . Mar . 2011

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