Thursday, December 16, 2010

Pretzel Rolls

If you are looking at these rolls thinking they are just another roll, look again my dear readers. These rolls are the new love of my family.  They posess a soft and flavorful exterior that is dotted with crunchy bites of salt, combined with a light yet chewy center which creates the most most perfet roll. A roll that tastes like a pretzel, and so delicious that it is easy to eat a bunch few without even realizing it.  I was amazed that the simple step of poaching the rolls in water and baking soda would yield a flavor that is exactly the same as a soft pretzel.  My next plan is to make them in pretzel form, covered in cinnamon and sugar.  Until then, pairing these up with a warm winter soup is ideal.  Enjoy!

Pretzel Rolls
Recipe Source: Sweet Peas Kitchen

**Cook's note-Add the baking soda slowly to prevent your water from boiling over.  Make sure to drain your rolls very well before returning to the baking sheet.**

1 1/2 cups warm water (110°F)

1 package active dry yeast
2 teaspoons sugar
4 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons kosher salt
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1/4 cup baking soda
large saucepan of water
1 egg, lightly beaten
pretzel salt (sea salt works too)

In the bowl of a stand mixer combine the water and the yeast and let rest 5 minutes until foamy.  Add the sugar, flour, salt, and butter; mix with the dough hook until thoroughly combined. Cover with a towel and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour or until doubled in bulk.

Punch down and turn out onto a lightly floured surface.

Cut the dough into 18 pieces (2 ounces each) or less if you want a larger roll, and shape into balls. Place on baking sheet seam side down at least 1” between each roll. Cover with a towel and let rise in a warm place for 30 minutes until doubled.

Preheat oven to 425°F and place oven racks on the lowest and middle positions.

In a large saucepan, bring 2 quarts of water to a low boil. Add the baking soda and lower heat to a simmer. Put the rolls into the poaching liquid, seam side down. Poach for 30 seconds then carefully turn the roll over in the liquid. Poach other side for 30 seconds then remove with a slotted spoon to the same prepared sheet pans, seam side down.  Repeat with the remaining rolls.

With a pastry brush, glaze each roll with the lightly beaten egg making sure to coat all sides completely. Top each roll with a sprinkle of pretzel salt. With a sharp straight edged knife or kitchen shears, cut a slash or “X” in the top of each roll.

Bake the rolls in a preheated oven for 15-20 minutes.

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