Saturday, September 28, 2013

New York Style Soft Pretzels

New York Style Soft Pretzels 
Makes 10 large pretzels
Our love of  these delicious twists of malted dough definitely uncover our  New York roots .  In New York City virtually every street corner has its resident  soft pretzel hawker and shoppers normally grab a soft  pretzel as they scurry from store to store.  Try them warm and spread with yellow delicatessen mustard like New Yorkers do, its GREAT !
                                                               Prep time:    15 minutes
                                                               Rise time:     1 hour 30 minutes (divided)
                                                               Bake time:    25 minutes


1 (12ounce) bottle of good amber beer or non-alcoholic amber beer, warm (105° F)
1 package active dry yeast (not instant rise yeast)
2 teaspoons honey
4-½ cups unbleached all-purpose Flour
2 teaspoons fine Kosher or sea salt
4 tablespoons unsalted Butter, melted
¼ cups baking soda
2 whole egg, lightly beaten
Coarse Kosher salt, for sprinkling

create the pretzel dough:

Pour the warm beer into a 2 cup measuring cup, stir in the yeast and sugar and allow the yeast to proof for 5-10 minutes. The mixture will form a foam head, if it doesn’t the yeast is dead and you’ll need to start over. 

Add the flour, salt, melted butter, and the proofed yeast to the bowl of your stand mixer.  Fix with the dough hook attachment and mix using the dough hook until combined well. Place the finished dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and allow to rise in a warm place for 1 hour or until doubled.

form and proof the pretzels:

Line several large sheet pans with parchment paper and set aside. 

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured, clean surface.  Punch it down and roll the dough into an evenly shaped log about 20 inches long.  Cut the log into 10 evenly sized pieces.  Roll each piece into a "rope" about 18 inches long with slightly tapered ends.  

Form each rope into the traditional, three-ringed pretzel shape and place the completed pretzel on the prepared baking sheet, repeat with the remaining dough ropes placing the newly formed pretzels at least 1-inch from the previous.  As each pan is filled cover with a damp kitchen towel and set aside.  Let the completed pretzels rise again until they double in size, about 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 425°F with the oven rack in the middle position.

boil the pretzels:

Bring 2 quarts of water to a low boil, in a large sauce pan or pasta pot.  Once the water boils, remove from heat and slowly add the baking soda (if you put it in too fast the water will boil and overflow the pot).  Place the pot back over the heat and lower to a simmer.

Place 1-2 pretzels at a time into the poaching liquid, and poach for 30 seconds on one side and then carefully turn the pretzel over and poach the other side for another 30 seconds. Remove from the poaching liquid with a slotted spoon and return to the prepared sheet pan. Repeat this process with the remaining pretzels.

bake the pretzels:

Brush each pretzel with the beaten egg using a pastry brush, be sure the egg coats all exposed sides completely, sprinkle each with a little of the coarse salt.

Place the sheet in the preheated oven and bake the rolls for 2-30 minutes, until they are golden brown.


Serve accompanied by yellow mustard and melted cheez whiz.

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