Soft Baked Pretzels
- 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.)
- 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).
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Grease a large baking sheet; set aside.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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