The other day I just had a craving for pretzels. It was Pinterest's fault, really. Every time I go there I end up hungry. So I looked around and found a recipe that was pretty good on Weight Watchers (4 pts). I ended up using an Alton Brown recipe which I modified to make a little healthier. They turned out so yummy and just what I wanted. The kids gobbled them up. They are best right out of the oven, but they were still really good on day two. Whatever you do, don't skip the baking soda in the water, that is the secret to the brown outside and the nice texture.
Recipe (adapted form Alton Brown)
- 1 1/2 cups warm (110 to 115 degrees F) water
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 teaspoons coarse salt
- 2 1/4 tsp yeast
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- 1 1/2 c. whole wheat flour
- 2 ounces unsalted butter, melted
- 10 cups water
- 2/3 cup baking soda
- 1 large egg yolk beaten with 1 tablespoon water
- Coarse sea salt
Combine the water, sugar and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer and sprinkle the yeast on top. Allow to sit for 5 minutes or until the mixture begins to foam. Add the flour and butter and, using the dough hook attachment, mix on low speed until well combined. Change to medium speed and knead until the dough is smooth and pulls away from the side of the bowl, approximately 4 to 5 minutes. Remove the dough from the bowl, clean the bowl and then oil it well with vegetable oil or Pam. Return the dough to the bowl, cover with plastic wrap and sit in a warm place for approximately 50 to 55 minutes or until the dough has doubled in size.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Line 2 half-sheet pans with parchment paper.
Bring the 10 cups of water and the baking soda to a boil in a large pot.
Turn out dough onto floured surface and cut into 16 equal pieces. Roll each piece into an 18 inch rope and then make a pretzel shape.
Place the pretzels into the boiling water, 2 at a time for 30 seconds. Remove them from the water using a large flat spatula. Return to the half sheet pan, brush the top of each pretzel with the beaten egg yolk and water mixture and sprinkle with the salt. Bake until dark golden brown in color, approximately 12 to 14 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack.