Yep, it is another post from "other" sister. I know, I know, 2 posts in a week from me is CRAZY. It is great to have a working computer and the time to do this! I have been enjoying spending time in the kitchen and trying new recipes I have wanted to make but didn't have the time to do so. I have been toying with the idea of making homemade soft pretzels for awhile, but it seemed like a daunting task and I just never took courage to do it. But I got it in my head on Sunday night that I was GOING to make them, no excuses. I do have to admit though that I cheated. Just a little. I needed to make them a lunchbox snack so I made pretzel BITES instead of the cool braided looking pretzels. In this case, form had to follow function, and if it happened that it made it a little easier...hey I can't help that! Let me tell you something, my husband couldn't stay OUT of these! They were almost all gone before the night was over! I always ask him to rate my recipes 1 to 10 with 10 being the best and I have never gotten a 10. I have a lot of 8's and some 9's but never a 10. UNTIL NOW. I got a perfect score on this baby and the accompanying dip that went along with it. I am still on cloud nine! Or should I say cloud TEN! So here it is, the perfect chewy pretzel recipe! Hope you all enjoy! By the way, they were NOT hard at all! Pretty easy actually, so that is a plus!
Chewy Pretzel Bites
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon sugar
2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast
1 cup very warm water
1/2 cup warm water
2 Tablespoons baking soda
Coarse salt (optional-I used regular)
3 Tablespoons melted butter
In a large bowl combine the flour, salt, sugar, yeast and 2 1/4 cups flour. Mix to combine and then add the water. Mix well, adding the remaining flour as needed to form a soft, smooth dough that clears the sides and bottom of the bowl. Knead the dough by hand or mixer for about 5 minutes until it is soft and smooth and elastic. Lightly oil a bowl and put dough in rolling around so it is coated with the oil. Cover and let rise for about 60 minutes. (until about doubled in size)
Preheat your oven to 475 degrees. Lightly oil two cookie sheets. Transfer dough to a lightly greased work surface and divide into about 4 equal pieces. Roll each piec into a one inch diameter rope. Allow the pieces to rest for 5 minutes uncovered. While dough is resting combine the 1/2 cup warm water and baking soda in a bowl deep enough to dip the pretzel pieces into. Stir until the soda is dissolved.
Cut each rope into 1 to 1 1/2 inch pieces.
Dip each piece into the baking soda solution and place them on the cookie sheets. Allow to rest for another 10 minutes. Bake on sheet at a time for 5 - 7 minutes or until pretzels are golden brown. Remove from oven and brush them thoroughly with melted butter. Sprinkle with salt.
Onion Cream Cream Cheese Dip
4 oz cream cheese softened
1/2 half onion chopped
2 Tablespoons butter
Saute onions and butter until onions are soft and translucent. Combine cream cheese and onions until well blended and smooth. Salt and pepper to taste.