Friday, July 29, 2011

Pretzel Bites

For a while there it seemed like everybody and their brother was making pretzel bites. As usual I'm late to the party. I made these a while ago before it got insanely hot out. These are definitely not something to make when it hot and humid. That is, unless you like living in a sauna. With the baking and boiling, the kitchen gets pretty heated.

As I mentioned, it seems like everyone and their brother have posted about pretzel bites on their blog. That left me with a metric ton of pretzel recipes to wade through. I finally settled on the recipe for Soft Pretzel Bites from What's Gaby Cooking. The directions seemed the clearest and I had all the ingredients on hand.

They were really fun to make, but wow did they ever make a lot. The bites taste best on the first day.  You can reheat the leftovers in the oven the next day, but they are just not quite as good.

Strangely, Blockette did not like the pretzels.  She said they were spicy!  As best as I can figure, she didn't like the extra saltiness from the huge sea salt crystals.

Soft Pretzel Bites from what's Gaby Cooking
2 1/2 tsp active dry yeast
2 tbsp light brown sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water
5 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
2 1/2 tsp salt
2 1/2 cups AP Flour
2 cups Whole Wheat Flour
Vegetable Oil, for the bowl
10 cups water
2/3 cup baking soda
1 egg yolk
splash of water
course sea salt

Combine yeast, brown sugar and warm water in a mixer bowl fitted with a dough hook attachment. Let it hang out for 5 min til foamy. Add melted butter and salt to mix and combine. Add the AP Flour while dough hook is rotating. Next add Whole Wheat flour and mix til dough has formed large mass. Remove from bowl and let rest in an oiled bowl for an hour, covered with a kitchen towel. Preheat  oven to 425 F. Place a large pot with 10 c water on stove and bring to a boil. Add baking soda. *Don’t freak out when it almost bubbles over – it’s normal *  Remove dough from bowl and divide into 8 equal pieces. Roll each piece into a rope about 14" long. Cut rope of dough into little bite sizes pieces about 1" long. Using a slotted spoon, add about 20 to boiling water at a time. Once rise to top of water, 30 sec, remove with slotted spoon to a paper towel to dry. Repeat with remaining pieces of dough.
Transfer bites to parchment lined baking sheets that you’ve sprayed with cooking spray.
In a small bowl, whisk egg yolk and a splash of water. Brush tops of each pretzel bite with egg wash and sprinkle sea salt. Transfer to oven and bake til golden brown, 10-16 min. Remove from oven and let cool slightly before serving!

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