Ingredients / Shopping List
28g dried yeast
75g lard (or Trex)
125ml lukewarm milk
125ml lukewarm water
1 teaspoon of
sesame seeds or sea salt
Prep to Cook: Remember Pretzels need time to rise.
Mixing bowl, baking sheet, wooden spoon, or large food mixer with dough hooks, or breadmaker to create the dough.
Shape by hand and cook on baking tray
Mix the flour, salt, yeast, sugar and lard in a mixer bowl
Knead in the milk and water until you get a soft dough
Leave to rise
Preheat the oven to 200°C or Gas mark 6
Knead the dough again rapidly
Divide into 12 portions
Shape each portion into an oval
Roll each oval into a very long strip fatter in the middle about 40cm long
Pick up the 2 ends and make a loop
Cross the ends over twice and press on either side of the thickened middle.
Place the pretzels onto a baking sheet
Mix the egg with a little water and glaze the pretzels
Sprinklewith sea salt or sesame seeds
Cook until a deep golden brown
Pretzels originate from Germany. They are shaped into a unique knot and baked. They can be hard or soft. This recipe is for soft pretzels, glazed and seasoned with salt.
Cooks Know How:
Pretzels are made from slightly enriched dough, raised by yeast. The extra fat, usually lard or white fat, helps to keep the gluten softer and the texture of the dough slightly more dense than a typical white bread roll. The shape is the key feature of pretzels. They are fun to make and involve all the processes of breadmaking plus an important egg wash glaze just before cooking and sprinkling with sea salt or seeds.
The added fat in the recipe prevents the gluten in the dough from setting too hard and keeps the texture of the pretzel close. The egg wash makes the pretzel an excellent product to teach about the Maillard reaction. The Maillard reaction is when the proteins in the egg wash reacts chemically with the sugars from the flour starch. This brings about a rich, golden, sweeter crust.
The yeast in pretzels make the dough rise and the shape of the twist entangles as the dough proves. Yeast makes a gas that pushes up the dough until it rises visibly. On cooking the yeast cells are inactivated and no further gas is produced. The heat of the oven sets the risen shape and permits the colour changes to take place.
Pretzels can be large or small. Try differing sizes and sprinkles. Use the egg wash with poppy seeds, pine nuts or flavoured salts for tasty snacks for lunchboxes, picnics or nibbles.