Homemade Pretzel Bread

Homemade Pretzel Bread

One of my recent cravings are pretzels. There's a chain-bakery across my work (I say chain-bakery because it's not a very good chain bakery), and the only thing I really like from them are their pretzels. So once I week (I only allow myself once a week), usually on Monday, I get a pretzel for lunch.

I was watching Keeping Up With The Kardashians, and they mentioned pretzel bread. Pretzel BREAD? I thought to myself. I immediately went in search for a pretzel bread recipe and it didn't seem that hard to make. You only have to rise the dough once, and the dough is cooked in a baking soda bath. Which might seem daunting, but I assure you it's pretty easy.

The pretzel bread came out great! Dense, soft, chewy, and very salty - I think I added a little too much salt for effect. It's been a few weeks since I made this bread, but typing about it now makes we wanna have a pretzel again!

Taste: 4.5 out of 5
Consistency: 4 out of 5
Overall appeal: 4 out of 5

Homemade Pretzel Bread

Homemade Pretzel Bread: Joy Food Sunshine

Pretzel Bread Dough
2 ¼ tsp yeast
1 cup warm water 105-110 degrees F
2 TBS whole milk
3 TBS brown sugar
4 TBS butter melted
1 tsp sea salt
3 cups all-purpose flour

Baking Soda Bath
4 quarts water
½ cup baking soda

1-2 TBS coarse sea salt
2 TBS butter melted

Combine yeast, water, and brown sugar in the bowl of your standing mixer fitted with the dough hook. Let stand for 5 minutes (until foamy).
While yeast is proofing…melt butter in a microwave-safe bowl. Mix in milk and set aside.
Once yeast is proofed, add milk/butter to yeast mixture and mix on low speed with dough hook until just combined.

Add salt and flour and mix with dough hook until flour is fully incorporated.
Knead in a mixer until the dough forms a slightly tacky, but firm ball, you may need to add a little more flour 1 TBS at a time, but be careful, you want your dough a little tacky but not too sticky to handle.
Oil a large bowl, place the dough ball in the bowl, and cover with a damp towel in a warm place to let rise for one hour or until doubled in size.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and bring 4 quarts of water to a boil. When the water is boiling, slowly add the baking soda a little bit at a time (Be careful not to add too much at once or you will have a baking soda/water explosion)!
Remove the dough from the bowl and gently press out the air bubbles.

Make two balls of dough the same size (NOTE: The total weight of the dough comes out to be about 800 g, so each loaf should weigh about 400 g), forming them into the shape you want (Do not let it rise at all here! Straight from forming the ball into the water).
Drop one of the balls into the boiling baking soda water. Boil for 60-90 seconds on each side, turning it once to guarantee both sides covered. Drain the excess water from the dough and place it on an oiled baking sheet.

Immediately sprinkle coarse sea salt over the bread to your specific tastes, and use a knife to cut a small "X" on the top of the bread.
Repeat with second ball of dough. (Do not let it rise at all here! Straight from boiling into the oven).
Bake the bread for 22-25 minutes, rotating the baking sheet once.
Once removed from the oven, immediately brush the melted butter over the loaves to guarantee a soft crust. Transfer to a wire rack to cool just enough to enjoy!


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