This recipe is a testament to how far Kelly and I have come as cooks. These pretzel bites were one of the first recipes we attempted when we started blogging. And after all the millions of steps, they were a disaster. We realized after we began boiling the pretzels that we had forgotten to add the baking soda. We tried to add it and keep going but the results were “un-puffed, un-golden” piles of rubbery dough. Whoops! Well we were pretty much traumatized by that little incident. Even though these pretzel bites looked terrific we were terrified to try again. Even though we got the hang of making pretzel through this recipe and this recipe it took us over 2 years to finally try these again.
We are no longer quite as clueless in the kitchen. We have learned a lot over the past 2 years, having made many, many,many mistakes. But we did not mess these up twice. Thank goodness. That would just be embarrassing. We followed the directions, added the baking soda, and what do you know? Success. This is a pretty time consuming recipe but it was worth every step. We only ate about half of the pretzels once we made them but the rest reheated just fine the next day. Next time I will make an even bigger batch and freeze them. They make a great Sunday afternoon snack while watching the Cubs lose.
1 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon packed brown sugar, divided
1/2 cup warm water
1 cup warm milk
2 1/2 – 2 2/3 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup chopped turkey
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
6 cups water
4 teaspoons baking soda
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1-2 tablespoons coarse salt
Combine the yeast, 1 teaspoon brown sugar, and warm water in a bowl.Set aside until foamy which should take about 5-8 minutes. In a separate bowl combine remaining brown sugar, and warm milk. Wait for the brown sugar to dissolve. Combine the milk and yeast mixtures and then add 2 1/2 cups of flour. Stir until a dough forms. If the dough is sticky add the remaining flour. Kneed the dough until smooth. Spray a bowl with cooking spray and add the dough to the bowl. Cover with a damp towel and allow to rise. After about 2 hours it should double in size.
Once the dough has risen, divide it into 4 pieces. On a lightly floured surface roll the dough 1 at a time into a 12 x 4 inch rectangle. Sprinkle one half of the dough with the chopped turkey and shredded cheese. Starting with the side of the dough that has filling begin rolling the dough. (See picture) cut into 12 equal pieces and repeat with the other 3 pieces of dough. Place each pretzel onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Let set for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Bring 6 cups of water to a boil. Once boiling add the baking sodea. boil the pretzels in batches for about 20 seconds per batch. I did about 6 at a time. Place bioled pretzels back on parchment lined baking sheet. Once they are all boiled. Place the baking sheets in the oven and bake for 15-18 minutes. They should be puffed and golden brown.
Once out of the oven, melt the butter in the microwave. Brush each pretzel with butter and sprinkle with coarse salt. Serve immediately.
Source: Slightly adapted from Pink Parsley