Okay not going to lie, I’ve never really given much thought to pretzels. I predominantly thought they were a savoury snack. So when I received my latest baking box from BakedIn, I was intrigued to find that this month’s bake was going to be soft-baked pretzels. Not only that, but these were sweet, covered in cinnamon and designed to be dipped into melted chocolate.
Pretzels were so fun to make- I would never have baked something like this usually, but they were easier than I thought they would be.
I ate mine fresh out of the oven- they were delicious and made me feel like I was in continental Europe (or the States). Great for when you can’t travel!
If you want to try baking pretzels yourself, check out the recipe below ( courtesy of BakedIn).
- 570g strong white bread flour
- 30g caster sugar
- 1⁄2 tsp salt
- 7g yeast
- 2 tbsp bicarbonate of soda
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 65g caster sugar
- 70g dark chocolate chips
- 350ml milk
- 120g unsalted butter
1. Melt 70g of butter in a small pan and add 350ml of milk. On a low heat, warm the mixture until it is just past lukewarm (if you have a thermometer this is about 40oC). Test the milk with your finger; it should be a comfortable temperature. If it is too hot to hold your finger in for a few seconds, leave the milk to cool slightly. If the milk is too hot, it will prevent the dough from rising.
2. Empty the strong white bread flour into a large bowl, reserving 1 tbsp of flour for dusting. Add the caster sugar, salt and yeast and mix until well combined. Make a well in the flour mixture, then pour in the warmed milk and butter.
3. Mix everything together with a wooden spoon until a soft dough forms. Sprinkle the reserved flour onto a clean work surface and tip the dough onto it. Grease the inside of a large, clean bowl with 5g (1 tsp) of butter. Set this bowl to one side. Knead the dough by stretching it away from you with the heel or knuckles of one hand and folding it back over the top towards you. Continue to knead for 8-10 minutes until the dough is smooth and elastic.
4. Shape the dough into a ball, and put it in the greased bowl. Cover with cling film or a tea towel and leave in a warm place for 60-90 minutes, or until the dough has doubled in size. Empty the dough onto a clean surface and knead a couple of times to knock the air out. Put the dough on a chopping board, and use a large knife to cut it into 16 equal pieces (cut the dough into quarters and then cut each quarter into 4). Roll each piece into a long rope, approximately 50cm long.
5. To shape the pretzel, curve the rope of dough into an upside down ‘U’, then twist the ends together twice, by wrapping the left end over the right end each time. Bring the twisted ends up towards the top and press firmly onto the top curve of the pretzel to secure the ends. Repeat for all 16 pretzels.
Note: Shape all 16 pretzels. Chill in the fridge any you wish to bake later, and continue from step 6.
6. Line the baking tray(s) with the provided baking paper and preheat the oven to 200oC/180oC fan/gas mark 6.
Add boiling water (10cm deep) to a pan. Carefully add the bicarbonate of soda (reserving some if you are not baking all the pretzels at once), and simmer. Using a slotted spoon or spatula, put one pretzel at a time into the water. Soak each pretzel for 10 seconds per side, drain the water from the pretzel and put onto the prepared baking tray(s). Bake, in as many batches as necessary, for 10-15 minutes until golden.
7. While the pretzels are baking, put the cinnamon and sugar into a medium sized bowl and ensure it is thoroughly mixed. As soon as the pretzels come out of the oven, brush with 45g of melted butter. Let the buttered pretzels cool for a couple of minutes. Leaving some pretzels plain if you wish (to dip in the chocolate sauce), toss the rest in the bowl of cinnamon and sugar, coating the front and back of each pretzel.
8. To make the chocolate dipping sauce, put the chocolate in a small heatproof bowl and warm 35ml of milk in a small saucepan until just below boiling. Pour the milk over the chocolate. Let it sit for 1 minute, then stir to combine until it is smooth and the chocolate has melted. The dipping sauce thickens as it cools, so make it right before you’re ready to tuck in.