Saturday, February 28, 2015

Pretzel Bread

I am a sucker for pretzels. We've made soft pretzels for snacks and love them. We bought some pretzel buns for dinner last week and I thought, I can make those!

I went on the internet to find a recipe. King Arthur flour didn't disappoint: they have a great recipe. I don't have any dry milk. But, never fear. They still came out FANTASTIC!!! I think my favorite part is making the deep cuts in the dough to make those crosses on the top! I made a half batch - just enough for dinner for the four of us. There wasn't enough dough in my stand mixer to do the job. So, I ended up kneading by hand. Other than that, the recipe does halve nicely.

Pretzel Bread
from King Arthur Flour

  • 1 3/4 cups warm water
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt 
  • 4 1/2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/4 cup Baker's Special Dry Milk or nonfat dry milk
  • 2 teaspoons instant yeast
  • coarse sea salt

  • Water bath
  • 2 quarts water
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1/4 cup baking soda

1. Mix and knead the dough ingredients — by hand, mixer, or bread machine — to make a smooth, slightly sticky dough. 
2. Allow the dough to rise in a lightly greased bowl, covered, for about 1 hour, until doubled.
3. Gently deflate the dough, and transfer it to a lightly greased work surface. 
4. Divide the dough into 10 pieces and shape each piece into a smooth ball. 
5. Place the balls on a lightly greased baking sheet, cover, and let rest for 15 minutes.
6. Preheat the oven to 400°F. 
7. Prepare the water bath: Bring the water, salt, and baking soda to a boil in a large pot.
8. Drop 5 dough balls at a time into the water bath. 
9. Cook for 30 seconds, flip over, and cook for 30 seconds longer. Using a slotted spoon, return the buns to the baking sheet.
10. Using scissors or a sharp knife, cut 1/2"-deep crosses into the center of each bun. Sprinkle with coarse sea salt. 
11. Bake the buns for 20 to 24 minutes, or until they're a deep-dark brown. Remove them from the oven, and transfer to a rack to cool.

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