Homemade Pretzels

table of pretzels

Every time I go to Germany, I seek out one thing; Pretzels! I love their chewy texture and salted exterior, and they are so pleasing to the eye. I thought I would try making my own having felt cravings ever since my last visit in Summer and not going back to Berlin until Easter. My pretzels are not the pretties, but they taste delicious and I loved the process of making them.

The recipe I used is actually an American version because the omre authentic German one I found  required ingredients I couldn’t easily get hold of in Sweden.

pretzel dough shape

When you make pretzels you roll the dough and then literally slap the dough-loop against the table top. This helps the gluten to form long strands, which aids the chewy texture. I later figured out that the pretzels need to be much thinner as they really swelled up during baking. In this picture you can see how the gluten strands have formed in how the dough is slitting a bit lengthwise.

placing pretzel in baking soda water

What makes pretzels special is that you soak them in a mixture of baking soda and water before baking them. This is also done with bagels, and enhances the chewiness.

floating pretzel

Does Lush do any pretzel themed bath products? They should. Just look at that pretzel enjoying his little bath.

pretzel dough

This is as close to looking like a regular pretzel as this fella got…

baked fat pretzel

…plan for some major swelling! There is yeast in the dough so I should have really expected this. I got nervous that the dough would break if I made it any thinner, but next time I will have to slap them around a bit more. Luckily they still tasted delicious and the (native) German approved although remarked that they were not dark and shiny enough, a fair point. The recipe did not call for an egg-wash, however real German pretzels should go through this stage.

Pretzels; delicious, amusing to look at and great for getting out your aggressions with.

All in all: 8 out of 10 baked potatoes

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