Yield: 8 large pretzels
- 2½ cups cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 2¼ teaspoons yeast
- ¼ teaspoon Amoretti® Rosemary Oil Extract
- ¼ teaspoon Amoretti®Garlic Oil Extract
- 4-5 basil leaves, chopped fine (optional)
- ⅞ to 1 cup warm water (Use the greater amount in winter, the lesser amount in summer, and somewhere in between during spring and fall. Your goal is a soft dough.)
- 1 cup boiling water
- 2 tablespoons baking soda
- pretzel salt
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- Place all of the dough ingredients into the bowl of a stand mixer, and beat until well-combined. Knead the dough, on medium, for about 5 minutes until soft, smooth, and quite slack. Flour the dough and place it in a bag, and rest at room temperature for 30 minutes.
- While the dough is resting, prepare the water bath: Combine the boiling water and baking soda, stirring until the soda is totally (or almost totally) dissolved. Pour the baking soda/water into a 9" square pan and cool to lukewarm (or cooler).
- Preheat your oven to 475°F. Prepare a baking sheet by spraying it with vegetable oil spray, or lining it with parchment paper.
- Transfer the dough to a lightly greased work surface, and divide it into eight equal pieces (about 70g, or 2½ ounces each).
- Shape each piece into a rough log and allow the pieces to rest, uncovered, for 5 minutes.
- Roll each piece of dough into a long, thin rope (about 28" to 30" long), and twist each rope into a pretzel (or cut into 1" pretzel bites). Working with 4 pretzels at a time, place them in the pan with the baking soda/water, spooning the water over their tops; leave them in the water for 2 minutes before placing onto the baking sheet. This baking soda “bath” will give the pretzels a nice, golden-brown color.
- Transfer the pretzels to the prepared baking sheet. Sprinkle them lightly with pretzel salt. Allow them to rest, uncovered, for 10 minutes.
- Bake the pretzels for 8 to 9 minutes, or until golden brown.
- Remove the pretzels from the oven, and brush them thoroughly with the melted butter. Keep brushing the butter on until you’ve used it all up; it may seem like a lot, but that’s what gives these pretzels their ethereal taste. Eat the pretzels warm, or reheat them in an oven or microwave.
Recipe adapted from King Arthur Flour website