I haven't made pretzels in so long, so I knew it was able time. This was a great recipe to make for dinner, plus I had leftovers and they're great to heat up for an after-school snack for Madeline. I knew these would be time consuming to make and with our crazy schedule lately, I knew I would have to make these on the weekend. The pretzels were the perfect texture and were even better dipped in spicy brown mustard..YUM!
1 1/2 cups warm water
1 Tbsp sugar
1 packet active dry yeast
4 1/2 cups flour
2 tsp salt
2 Tbsp butter, melted and cooled
8 hot dogs, cut in half
In the bowl of stand mixer, combine the water and sugar. Sprinkle the packet of yeast on tops of the water and allow to feed for 5 minutes. You'll begin to smell the yeast and see a foam starting to form. Once the yeast is frothy, add the flour, salt and melted butter. Knead using a dough hook on low speed until combined. Increase the speed to medium and knead the dough until it is smooth and pulls away from the sides of the bowl. Remove the dough from the bowl and lightly coat the bowl with oil. Add the dough back into the oiled bowl, sprinkle with flour and cover with plastic wrap to rise in a warm place.
When the dough has doubled in size (about an hour), line two baking sheets with parchment paper and lightly brush the paper will oil to keep the pretzels from sticking, Place the oven racks in the center and top third and preheat oven to 425 degrees. Lightly beat an egg in a small bowl and set aside.
In a large stock pot, combine 10 cups of water with 2/3 cup baking soda and bring to a boil. As the water comes to a boil, remove the dough from the bowl onto on a clean work surface. Divide the dough into 16 pieces. Roll each piece of dough until its a foot long. Wrap the dough around the hot dog and seal the ends.
Once the salted water is boiling, gently place the pretzel dogs into the water. Boil for 30 seconds and then remove with a slotted spoon and place on the prepared baking sheets. Brush the tops of the boiled pretzels with the beaten egg and then season with salt, pepper or other spices.
Bake for 12 to 14 minutes or until the pretzels are golden brown. Transfer to a cooling rack for a few minutes and serve warm.