We had some people over a whileback, so it was the perfect opportunityto finally make them! I had nevermade soft pretzels before, but I dohave deliciously wonderful memoriesof them. Back in my poor, single years(as opposed to my current poor,married years), I was a waitron atTimberwolves games. Isnt that afunny word? Waitron? Anyway,before the madness began eachnight, we had the option to eateither a free hot dog or a free softpretzel. I usually opted for the pretzel,along with a container of warm,gooey cheese for dipping. I never gottired of those things.I dont think I have bitten into a soft pretzel since my waitron days, which seriouslyseems like a lifetime ago. So when I bit into these delicious little bites, mytastebuds did cartwheels! Reunited with the beloved soft pretzel!
INGREDIENTSTo start off with this gourmetfood recipe, in a smallbowl, combine the ff.:• 2 tablespoons brownsugar• 1 cup warm milk (110-115degrees F)• Stir until the sugar isdissolved.• In a large bowl, combine:• 2 1/2 cups flour• Warm milk mixture• 1 package (1/4 oz.) instantdry yeast
Stir until a soft dough forms. Add more flour as needed (up to 1/2 cup). Turn thedough out onto a lightly floured surface and gently knead a few times, forming asmooth ball.Brush the inside of a largeclean bowl with olive oil.Transfer the dough to thebowl and cover tightly withplastic wrap. Allow it to risein a warm, draft-free area forabout 2 hours, or until thedough has doubled in sizeand bubbles appear on thesurface.
Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Divide it into 4 equal pieces.Lightly dust a rolling pin with flour and roll each piece of dough into roughlya 12x4-inch rectangle. As you can see, my rectangles are not quite rectangles.
With the long sides facing you, place the following ingredients onto thebottom third of each piece of dough:• A quarter of 1/2 cup finely chopped ham• A quarter of 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
Roll the dough as tightly asyou, starting with the longEdge holding the ham andcheese.Cut each roll into 12 equal pieces.
Transfer the pieces to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Let them rest, uncovered,at room temperature for 30 minutes. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.
Bring 6 cups of water to a boil. Add 4 teaspoons of baking soda to the boilingwater and reduce the heat to a gentle simmer. Boil the pretzels in batches,cooking for about 20 seconds each and turning once. Ill be honest, this processwas a little bit stressful (hence, no photos), and I had a handful of casualties.They should look slightly puffed when they are done. Use a slotted spoon totransfer them back to the baking sheet.
Bake in the preheated oven until they are puffed and golden, about 15 minutes.
Brush with 4 tablespoons of melted butter and sprinkle with1-2 tablespoons of coarse kosher salt.Source: http://www.pipandebby.com/pip-ebby/2012/2/27/ham-cheese-pretzel-bites.html