german pretzel rolls (laugenbrotchen)
So I've been trying to make pretzel rolls or laugenbrotchen. The first attempt, I ended up with roll shaped bagels. I assumed that this was due to the fact that I first boiled the dough in a baking soda solution before baking instead of using the traditional lye dip. So when my boyfriend went to Germany, I asked him to bring back some lye for pretzels. He came back with something called kaisernatron. He claims that everyone makes pretzels with this stuff. I was skeptical since it seemed like it was just baking soda, but then I made the pretzel rolls with it and it was much more like pretzels than when I first made them with american baking soda. So I guess what I'm trying to ask is, is german baking soda somehow different than american baking soda?
Also, does anyone know how long you boil the dough before removing it to bake? I think I might have boiled mine too long. Most of my rolls had soggy parts that didn't dry up during baking. They soggy parts are pretty bitter tasting.