I was so happy with myself when these turned out, I used to be terrified of anything with yeast. But you just have sit back, relax and let the magic happen. This was a beautiful dough, the thing I am most shocked about is that they actually tasted like a soft pretzel! I MADE a soft pretzel! A ton of bite sized soft pretzels actually. Now you try. It makes a large portion. Perfect for a super bowl party.
Recipe by Bobby Flay...whom I love.
1 1/2 cups warm water
2 Tbsp light brown sugar
1 package active dry yeast
3 ounces unsalted butter, melted
2 1/2 tsp kosher salt
4 1/2 to 5 cups of flour
3 quarts of water
3/4 cup of baking soda
1 whole egg beaten with the tbsp cold water
Coarse Sea salt
Combine water, sugar, yeast and butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, mix until combined. Let sit 5 minutes.
Add the salt and flour and mix on low until combined. Increase the speed to medium and continue kneading the dough until it is smooth and pulls away from the sides of the bowl. About 3 or 4 minutes. If the dough appears to wet add additional flour, 1 Tbsp at a time. Remove the dough from bowl and place on a flat surface and knead into a ball, using your hands. Oil a bowl with vegetable oil and add the dough to the bowl tossing around to coat in the oil. Cover with a clean towel or plastic wrap and place in a warm spot. Let dough sit until it doubles in size. About an hour.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Bring the water to a boil in a small roasting pan over high heat, add baking soda. Remove the dough from the bowl and place on a flat surface. Divide the dough into 8 pieces about 4 1/2 ounces each. Roll each piece into a long rope measuring 22 inches. Cut the dough (I used a pizza cutter) into 1 inch pieces. Boil the pretzel bites in the water solution in batches for about 30 seconds. Remove with a large slotted spoon. Place pretzel bites on a baking sheet that has been sprayed with nonstick spray. Make sure they are not touching, brush the tops of the bites with the egg wash and season liberally with the salt. Bake for 15-18 minutes until golden brown. Let rest 5 minutes before eating. Best eaten right away.