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Homemade Pretzels and Pretzel Bites:
- 1 1/2 cups warm water
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 2 ¼ tsp or 1 package active dry yeast
- 4 ½ C all-purpose flour
- 2 ounces butter, melted
- Vegetable oil, (for bowl)
- 10 cups water
- 1/3 cup baking soda
- 1 large egg yolk beaten with 1 tablespoon water
- Kosher salt to sprinkle on top
Combine the water, sugar and 2 tsp kosher salt in the bowl of a stand mixer and sprinkle the yeast on top. Allow to sit for 5 minutes or until the mixture begins to foam. Add the flour and butter and, using the dough hook attachment, mix on low speed until well combined. Change to medium speed and knead until the dough is smooth and pulls away from the side of the bowl, approximately 4 to 5 minutes. Remove the dough from the bowl, clean the bowl and then oil it well with vegetable oil. Return the dough to the bowl, cover with plastic wrap and sit in a warm place for approximately an hour or until the dough has doubled in size.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Line 2 pans with cooking spray. Set aside.
Bring the 10 cups of water and the baking soda to a rolling boil in an 8-quart saucepan or roasting pan.For Pretzels: In the meantime, turn the dough out onto a slightly oiled work surface and divide into 8 equal pieces.
Roll out each piece of dough into a 24-inch rope. Make a U-shape with the rope, holding the ends of the rope, cross them over each other and press onto the bottom of the U in order to form the shape of a pretzel. Place greased pan.
For Pretzel Bites: Separate and roll dough out as explained above, but instead of shaping as a pretzel, use a pizza cutter to cut the rolled dough into “bites”. Place on cookie sheet.
Place the pretzels and/or bites into the boiling water, 1 by 1, for 30 seconds. Remove them from the water using a large flat spatula. The baking soda really makes the boiling water foamy!
I took a cooling rack and set it on a separate cookie sheet so that when you take out the wet pretzels out of the water they can drip off while you coat them with egg and kosher salt for baking.
After they are not dripping, return them to the half sheet pan you initially greased and bake until dark golden brown in color, approximately 12 to 14 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack for at least 5 minutes before serving. Enjoy!
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