A confession: I never made anything bread-related before this, and these (along with the feta and roasted red pepper dipping sauce) were one of the biggest hits of anything I’ve ever made. That’s how easy this recipe is. You can go full flour on this recipe, or half it with whole-wheat flour for a healthier version – they’re equally delicious (seriously.)
SOFT PRETZEL BITES (makes about 5 dozen – minimally adapted from sally’sbakingaddiction.com)
- 2 – 2.25 cups white flour
- 2 – 2.25 cups whole-wheat flour
- 1 and 1/2 cups lukewarm water
- 1 pack instant yeast (2 and 1/4 teaspoons)
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tbsp. brown sugar
- 1 tbsp. butter, melted
- 1 beaten egg
- kosher salt
1. Dissolve yeast in the warm water, stirring for about 1 minute.
2. Add salt, sugar and melted butter and combine. At this point I dumped this mixture in a KitchenAid mixer, which will make this process a whole lot simpler if you have one.
3. To the mixing bowl, with the dough hook running, add both flours 1 cup at a time. Stop when you get to 4 cups and make sure everything is coming together.
6. On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough for a couple minutes, then shape into a ball. Put the dough ball in a mixing bowl lightly coated with nonstick spray, cover with a kitchen towel, and put in a warm-ish area for approx. 15 minutes.
7. In a large pot, combine 9 cups of water with 1/2 cup baking soda, stir, and get it up to boiling.
8. Heat oven to 425. Get two baking sheets and line them with parchment paper.
9. Cut your dough ball into about 6 sections. Take one section and roll it out into a long rope. Cut it into pretzel-bite size pieces.
10. When the baking soda bath is boiling, drop about 10 pretzel bites at a time and let them sit for 20 seconds. Remove with a slotted spoon and put onto the parchment-paper-lined baking sheet. Don’t skip this baking soda bath – it’s what gives the pretzels their golden color and chewy interior. Repeat with the rest of the pretzel bites until they’re all on the parchment paper.
11. Brush the beaten egg over each pretzel bite, then sprinkle with kosher salt. Bake for about 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Serve with a dip that’s going in the next post and will knock your socks off.
Thanks to everyone who attended the 72nd Annual Sant’ Andrea Society event last night – we had a full house and (more importantly) a packed dance floor all night long – it was a fantastic evening!!