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Soft Baked Pretzels

Soft pretzels are a favorite snack around the world, from Germany's Oktoberfest to America's baseball games and street vendors.

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  • Makes: 8 servings
  • Serving Size: 1 pretzel
  • Yields: 8 pretzels
  • Prep: 55 mins
  • Rise: 1 hr
  • Bake: 10 mins to 12 mins 450°F

Soft Baked Pretzels

Directions

  1. In a small saucepan heat and stir milk, 1/4 cup water, and sugar over low heat until warm (110 degrees F to 115 degrees F). Pour into the large bowl of an electric mixer. Sprinkle with yeast; let stand about 5 minutes or until foamy. Add 2 1/3 cups of the flour, the butter, and 1 1/4 teaspoons salt. Using the hook attachment, beat on low speed for 2 to 3 minutes or until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat on medium-low speed for 8 to 10 minutes or until a soft dough forms. (The dough should pull away from sides of bowl but still be slightly sticky. If it is too sticky, beat in the additional flour.)
  2. Turn dough out onto a clean, dry work surface. Knead a few times, then shape dough into a ball. Place in a lightly greased bowl, turning once to grease surface of dough. Cover and let rise in a warm place until double in size (about 1 hour).
  3. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Grease a large baking sheet; set aside.
  4. Punch dough down. Turn out onto a clean, dry work surface. Divide dough into eight portions. Roll and stretch each portion into a 30-inch rope. If the dough seems tight and does not want to stretch, cover and let rest about 10 minutes or until it relaxes.
  5. To shape each pretzel, hold one end of a rope in each hand and form a U-shape. Cross the ends over each other twice. Then lift the ends across to the bottom of the U-shape; press to seal.
  6. In a deep dish or pot slightly larger than each pretzel stir together 3 cups hot water and baking soda. Using a slotted spoon, lower pretzels, one at a time, into baking soda mixture for 10 seconds. Remove pretzels and place on paper towels to blot the bottoms dry. Arrange 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheet.
  7. In a small bowl combine egg yolk and the 1 Tbsp. water. Brush pretzels with egg yolk mixture. If desired, sprinkle with coarse salt. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until deep golden brown. Cool slightly on a wire rack; serve warm.

From the Test Kitchen

*Electric Hand Mixer Method

Using an electric hand mixer, beat the dough mixture on low speed just until combined. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead in enough of the remaining flour to make a soft dough, about 10 minutes. The dough should still be slightly sticky. If it is too sticky, knead in the additional flour. Shape dough into a ball. Place in a lightly greased bowl, turning once to grease surface of dough. Cover and let rise in a warm place until double in size, about 1 hour. Proceed as directed in step 3.

Nutrition Facts (Soft Baked Pretzels)

  • Per serving:
  • 188 kcal cal.,
  • 4 g fat
  • (2 g sat. fat,
  • 0 g polyunsaturated fat,
  • 1 g monounsatured fat),
  • 33 mg chol.,
  • 854 mg sodium,
  • 32 g carb.,
  • 1 g fiber,
  • 4 g sugar,
  • 5 g pro.
  • Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet

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