The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

pretzels

DiJonCamacho's picture
DiJonCamacho

I made these the other day and they were gone in minutes. I went to a restaurant called Bar Louie and ordered these and said, "I have to make these". I already love pretzels, so why not?

isand66's picture
isand66

Today's the Superbowl and I was asked to make some pretzel rolls to bring to the party we're going to.  I made a batch for Christmas Eve which everyone raved about so I used the same recipe I found on the TFL website.  I also couldn't help but try my own variation using my sourdough starter, pumpernickel flour and cheddar cheese.

I wasn't sure how they would turn out, but I do have to say they didn't dissapoint and rival the original.  Come on....who doesn't like cheese?

These are not hard to make except for the food grade Lye bath they go into.  Many people say you don't need to use Lye and can use baking soda.  I have not tried baking soda yet since I still have plenty of the Lye.  The Lye gives the pretzels a hard dark brown crust which is not easy to obtain with anything else. Feel free to use baking soda instead and increase the amount used versus the Lye.

Caution:  When using the Lye make sure you wear gloves, long sleeves and protective eye gear. Also, never add Lye to hot water or it will bubble over and probably burn you.

Main Dough Ingredients for 10 rolls at about 110 grams each

145 grams AP Sourdough Starter at 65% or adjust flour and water accordingly

437 grams Bread Flour (KAF)

200 grams Dark Rye (also known as Pumpernickel)

5 grams Seas Salt or Table Salt

5 grams Diastatic Malt Powder

384 grams Water (80-90 degrees F.)

Cheddar Cheese cut into cubes (sorry but I forgot to measure the cheese)

Pretzel Salt (for topping only)

For Lye Bath (3.5% Solution

2 Liters of Cold water

70 grams Sodium Hydroxide Crystals

Procedure

Add the diastatic malt powder to the water and stir.  Add the flours in your mixing bowl and slowly add the water mixture.  Mix for about 1 minute until combined.  Cut your starter in pieces and lay on top of the flour mixture and cover and let rest for 30 minutes to 1 hour so the flour can absorb the water.

Next add the salt and mix for 4 minutes on low.    Place the dough in a slightly oiled bowl and do a couple of stretch and folds.  Cover the bowl and let it rest for 10-15 minutes.  Do another stretch and fold in the bowl and let it rest another 10-15 minutes.  Do another stretch and fold and let the dough sit out in the covered bowl for another 1.5 hours.  Place the dough in the refrigerator until ready to bake the next day.

When ready to bake take the dough out and leave it covered in your bowl for 2 hours.  Next divide the dough into around 10 pieces that are 110 grams each.  Flatten each piece into a circle and place a piece of cheese in the middle and pinch the dough around the cheese.  Next flip over and roll against your work surface while creating a tight ball.  Place on a baking sheet and cover with either a moist towel or plastic wrap sprayed with cooking spray.  Let it rest for around 60 minutes to about 1/2 proof.

While the rolls are proofing, fill a large stock pot with 2 liters of cold water.  Measure out the Lye and slowly add it to the cold water.  (DO NOT EVER ADD LYE TO HOT WATER).  Cover the pot and bring it to a rolling boil and then shut off the heat.

Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees.  When the rolls are proofed sufficiently, prepare to dip them for about 15 seconds in the lye bath upside down.  Let them drain on a bakers rack over a cookie tray covered with a towel or parchment paper.  After draining for a minute you can transfer them to a cookie/baking sheet that has been sprayed with cooking spray.  You want to use a stainless steel cooking sheet as aluminum may react with the lye and peel.  Note: do not ever use parchment paper as the rolls will get stuck to the bottom.  I know this from experience and I had to cut off the bottoms of half the rolls I made.

When ready to bake, score each roll with an "X" on the middle and sprinkle with pretzel salt.  Make sure you use pretzel salt if you want authentic rolls.

Bake for about 15-20 minutes until they are golden brown and register about 185 F in the middle.  Let them cool on a bakers rack until you can't wait any longer!

I actually couldn't wait long enough to try one which is why the crumb shot below is a little gummy looking.  It tasted good though!

Enjoy!

Let's go Jets!  (Did I really say that?  Must be the alcohol.....)

frenchcreek baker's picture

THE BEST 5-DAY EUROPEAN ARTISAN BREAD BAKING & PASTRY WORKSHOP: Guest Instructor German Master Baker

February 22, 2012 - 4:47pm -- frenchcreek baker
Forums: 

 

THE HAINS HOUSE PRESENTS

 

5-DAY EUROPEAN BAKING COURSE

MARCH 10-15, 2012

Günter Franz 

Guest Instructor European Master Baker

                              Small Class Size         Hands-On         Wood Fired Oven 

 

Learn the inside secrets to making European baked goods and specialty German breads. 

tabasco's picture

Lenten Baking: paczki, hot cross buns, king cakes, Vastlakuklid, pretzels??

February 22, 2012 - 6:14am -- tabasco

Hi, TFLers,

Perhaps the Lenten baking enthusiasts among us can help me?

I am writing an article about Lenten baking traditions and I am hoping bakers on Fresh Loaf who bake anything in particular for the season might share your story, what is popular in your local,  perhaps your family tradition, a pic or/and a recipe?  Breads, cookies, pastries, etc., are what I have in mind.

Here in Cincinnati the bakeries advertise their 'paczkis', but I don't really know exactly what they are...they seem very popular though.

Brot Backer's picture

Lye source in North California (Sonoma County)?

October 28, 2010 - 8:31am -- Brot Backer

First of all, I did a search and couldn't find what I was looking for.

I live in Sonama County (Santa Rosa) and if at all possible I'd like to get my hands on some food grade lye today. I have a last minute request for pretzels and prefer to not make a mess boiling them with baking soda. Anyone have any ideas where I could pick some up around here?

 

Thanks a ton,

-Alec

ArtisanGeek's picture
ArtisanGeek

Hello everyone, I've been trolling around here for a while and I decided its time to finally post something. This is my version of soft pretzels. For the formula and details, check out my blog , The Bread Portal. This is very similar to the Pretzel formula post in the "Favorite Reciptes" section of this blog.

Easy Pretzels

benjamin's picture
benjamin

I have made soft pretzels in the past, and have always enjoyed them, however I have always wanted to make a sourdough version. After much internet research, I did not come across any recipes that called out to me, so I decided to do my own. I adapted a Bertinet recipe, simply replacing fermented white dough in the recipe with an equal quantity of firm sourdough starter. I also retarded the dough in the fridge over night... though this was more to do with the fact that I wanted to bake them fresh the next morning rather than anything else.

IMG_1753.JPGIMG_1768.JPG

All in all I was really pleased with the result. The inside was very soft and authentic. I didn't bother with either a lye bath, or boiling the pretzels prior to baking. I plan to try boiling the next time I make these, but the lye bath seems a little to much trouble.

By the way, I will be happy to post the whole recipe if anyone is interested.

 

happy baking

ben

zhi.ann's picture
zhi.ann

My second attempt at using yeast!

I discovered one packet of my yeast, labeled as 18g, results in more than 35 ml (about 7 tsp or 2 1/3 Tbsp) of dry yeast. Is it okay that I store what I don't use in an airtight tupperware-type container, in a dark cabinet?

storing yeast

I started preparing for the pretzels at 8:10 pm using floyd's recipe here.

I wasn't sure how to activate my yeast, not sure whether to mix in or let it sit on top of the water, but I think it worked correctly; at first, nothing seemed to happen but after a few minutes a thickish layer of tan foamish stuff was on the top.

activating dry yeast

My brown sugar comes in hard blocks I have to chop up to make like a powder. It wasn't as fine as it could of been if I kept chopping, but after quite awhile, I put it in there. Is it okay that my brown sugar wasn't super-fine?

not too fine brown sugar

I had to add a ton of flour, probably 550 ml (2.5 cups) above the original 240 ml (1 cup).

I also didn't know how to knead until satiny. After just a minute or two, it seemed smoother than before, but as I continued kneading it quickly became rougher, and after 8 minutes of kneading and not being sure what I was looking for, I moved on. Also, despite the added flour, it still stuck to the cutting board a lot.

This may be because of the consistency being off, but I couldn't figure out how to "roll" my dough into logs. I kind of squeezed them into the logs, rolling as much as I could (not much) to make them round, and I came out with very inconsistent sizes with loops that didn't want to stick at all.

pretzel logs

I used the eggwash.

I didn't know whether to grease the baking sheet, and whether the salt was needed (I always scrape the salt off my pretzels cuz I don't like the taste). I salted one, put garlic powder on one, and left the others plain.

pretzels, pre-baking

At this point (I know better now) I thought I should only turn on the bottom, not the top, heating element for baking. After 6 minutes, my pretzels were so HUGE, they didn't really have holes anymore. Oh well.

The tops weren't browning at all (obviously since I didn't have any heat up there) but the bottoms were turning yucky black, so I took them out.

pretzels, post-baking

You know what? They tasted really good. They taste to me like breadsticks, not pretzels, but still yummy. My husband melted some butter with garlic powder mixed in, and it made a great dip. I liked the garlic powder pretzel best, and wonder whether I could brush them with the butter/garlic powder mix rather than the egg, or in addition?

pretzel inside - yum!

Looking forward to trying this again:
-with both heating elements on
-rolling the dough out thinner so the pretzels will look more like pretzels
-potentially brushing with butter/onion powder, based on people here's suggestions
-anything else people suggest for me 

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - pretzels