Pretzel Rolls

It’s a New Year. Regardless of your political convictions and leanings, one thing we should all agree on is that pretzel rolls need to be on our 2017 agenda. Easier to make then pretzels (no shaping and twisting and forming!), these rolls taste amazing on their own, or sliced open and made into sandwiches. I can’t decide how I like them best, but I do know they are on my baking list every single week. (You can find regular pretzels and baked pretzels on our site as well!)

Pretzel Dough from The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day
3 cups lukewarm water
1 tablespoon Platinum Yeast
1 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt
2 tablespoons Non-diastatic malt powder (or sugar)
6 1/2 cups (2 pounds) bread flour – (this will make a stronger dough and holds up to boiling the pretzels.)
Pretzel Salt

the boiling pot
8 quarts boiling water
1/4 cup baking soda (We don’t use lye, because it is a chemical that few people will have on hand and it is a bit risky to use. If you are committed to the authentic pretzel you really will want to find some lye and be very careful when using it, there are some pretty significant warnings on the label.)
1 tablespoon sugar

On baking day: Dust the surface of the refrigerated dough with flour and cute off a 1-pound (grapefruit-size) piece. Divide the dough into 8 smooth balls, then allow to rest for 20 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 450F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Bring a large saucepan or stockpot full of water to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and add the baking soda and sugar. Drop the pretzel rolls into the simmering water one at a time, making sure they are not crowding one another. They need enough room to float without touching or they will be misshapen. Let them simmer for 1 minute and then flip them over with a slotted spoon to cook the other side for another 30 seconds.

Remove them from the water using the slotted spoon, and place on a clean kitchen towel that has been dusted with flour. This will absorb some of the excess water from the pretzel rolls. Then place them on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat as necessary, until all the rolls have been boiled.

Sprinkle with pretzel salt or coarse salt. Slash with a Lame or knife in a cross shape across the top. Bake with steam for about 20 minutes, until golden brown.

 



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7 thoughts on “Pretzel Rolls

  1. For the alkaline water you can bake baking soda to change it from sodium bicarbonate to sodium carbonate to get a more alkaline product. Bake the soda in thin layer for about an hour at 350 F. The end product weighs less because carbon dioxide and water are driven off by the heat. Store tightly sealed. It’s not nearly as alkaline as lye, but is better than just baking soda. This is a work around for making traditional ramen noodles at home if you don’t have lye-water also known as kan-sui and supposedly available in well stocked Asian markets. The 1/4 cup is probably a good amount for the boiling pot.

    1. Agree with Tom M. Washing soda – baked baking soda – gives you a pH of about 11.25 with 1/4c in 8q water. That’s about 1250 times stronger than baking soda’s pH of 8. It will do the job and it won’t burn you. And it’s cheap and super easy to make. I do mine at 400F for an hour. Actually, I do the lye dip method mostly; it’s just one of those small investments you make if you’re into baking pretzels. And the lye is a bit better, but washing soda does a decent job. Far better than baking soda. Barley malt syrup is just as good as malt powder too, maybe better.

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