Sunday, June 27

Sunday Baking Project: Sweet and Savoury Pretzels

There's a genuine Bavarian bakery about 15 minutes drive from my house that we happened upon one day on our way to somewhere else.  It's kind of hidden away but is well known amongst bakers and has enthusiastic and much return patronage by bread-lovers and locals alike.  Get there at midday on a Saturday and they're almost sold out!

They use genuine Bavarian bread recipes which made my hubby giddy with excitement.  Why?  Because he comes from a long line of Bavarian bakers.  His maternal grandfather and great uncle were both bakers, as was their father.  Hubby grew up on the bakery floor, quite frequently going to work with his grandpa and sampling the many treats that were made in their small country town.

Hubby's grandfather and great uncle have since passed away but when we visit the little town for nostalgia's sake we drop into the bakery which hasn't changed its decor at all.  They now serve the regular bakery fare, which is a bit sad.

Anyways, hubby's fave thing to pick up at the bakery is the genuine pretzels.  With rock salt , caraway or pumpkin seeds.  I like pretzels too, so I thought it high-time to try them at home.  Of course I never imagined I'd get anywhere close to the perfection from the bavarian bakery but my, they are yummy and great to stash away for yummy breakfast re-heated in the oven of just cold as a snack.  You can vary how you dress them to make them sweet or savoury.

Definitely submitting this to yeastspotting!

150g wholemeal flour
450g plain flour
1 tsp dry yeast
1 tsp salt flakes
425ml warm water
2 tb olive oil.

In your mixer or a bowl add all dry ingredients.
In a separate jug, add the olive oil to your water.

If using a mixer with a dough hook, gradually add water until it makes an elastic and well mixed dough, knead for about 3 minutes.

If kneading by hand add half the water straight up and mix well, gradually add the remaining water/oil until you reach an elastic consistency, about 10 minutes by hand.

Place in oiled bowl, cover with clingfilm and leave to prove for 3 hours.

When risen, knock the air out by kneading gently by hand and divide into 12 equal portions.
Cover 2 baking trays with baking paper.

Make your pretzels by rolling a portion into a long sausage, about diameter of a 1cm, and a length of about 30cm.

lifting ends upwards twist around each other twice and pull edges away from each other

Flip the bottom loop over the top of the twist and press it down to become a pretzel shape.

Set aside whilst you make the rest.

Preheat oven to 200 degrees c
Then in a frypan, add 1 litre of water and 75g of bicarb soda, bring to a boil and then set to a simmer.

Add the pretzels a couple at a time and let simmer for approx 30 seconds, turn over and simmer for a further 30 seconds.  Remove from pan, drain well and put on your baking tray.

When baking tray is full (6 bagels) you can choose to season if you like.  At this point sprinkle either:
Maldon salt for plain pretzel or poppy seeds/sesame seeds if you wish.
I added brown sugar and slivered almonds to a couple too.

Bake in the oven for 6 minutes, turn over and bake a further 6 minutes.

Another option for seasoning your bagels is brushing/glazing with butter or flavoured butter after they have been in the oven.  I buttered a few with butter with cinnamon, plain butter, and butter and dijon mustard.

Store in airtight container for up to 5 day or freeze for 2 months.
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2 lovely comments:

Anonymous said... [Reply to this amazing comment]

These look awesome - and not as difficult as I thought they would be.

Amie on March 16, 2011 at 1:20 PM said... [Reply to this amazing comment]

have had these bookmarked for awhile. attempted them today. Just went to flip them over but they didnt look anywhere near cook. hopefully they turn out.


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