October 5, 2012

Homemade Soft Pretzels ♥

I love soft pretzels. Almost as much as I love pizza or key lime pie. 
So when I had a day off last week (which feels like ages ago), I decided to
spend time with my younger brother and try to make soft pretzels from scratch
for the first time. I pretty much ended up making the entire thing by myself cause 
he lost interest and decided to watch Spongebob, but nevertheless, it was 
much easier than I expected. 

The recipe that I used is from Laura Vitale :) She's on YouTube, and she has AMAZING 
recipes that are pretty much fail proof and taste really good. 
The link to the recipe:

Here are just a few tips that helped me, or could have helped me a lot ;) :

Tip #1: a good place to store the dough while it's rising is the oven or microwave ;)

(I tried to make some stuffed with cheese. In the end, I didn't really taste or 
see the cheese at all :/ )

Tip #2: when rolling the dough out into a long "snake" shape, work quickly
It makes the whole process a lot easier for some reason, and you might have to 
put some muscle into the rolling ;).

Tip #3: this isn't really a tip but rather something to look out for.
When I tasted the pretzels, I realized that there was a bit of a strong
baking soda flavor due to the baking soda/water mixture. I added extra salt when
we were eating, which helped disguise the baking soda flavor (might also explain why
store bought soft pretzels are sometimes insanely salty :P ). 

Tip #4: I usually don't spray extra non-stick cooking spray onto the wax paper
when I bake cookies because they usually come off quite easily. However, I did
spray the wax paper generously with the cooking spray before the water step this time. Unfortunately, 
the pretzels absorbed most of the oil before I placed them into the boiling water. Additionally,
after taking them out of the water, they were still a bit wet, which may have affected the leftover 
oil on the baking sheet. The end result was that the pretzels were stuck to the wax paper :P. Not fun.
So try to spray the wax paper/baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray generously before AND after the baking soda/water step.

Tip #5: As you may be able to see, I attempted to make 4 cinnamon-sugar pretzels. 
Though they tasted good, I made the mistake of sprinkling the cinnamon sugar mixture over the 
pretzels while they were on the baking sheet before I put them in the oven. The sugar that was spilled onto 
the wax paper quickly burned xP. So next time, after taking the pretzels out of the boiling water, 
I recommend either sprinkling the cinnamon sugar onto the pretzel on a different surface (maybe over the trash), or dipping the top half of the pretzel in a shallow dish with the cinnamon sugar.

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