Jun 19, 2010

Homemade iLoveYou Pretzels

I was craving for Auntie Anne's famous pretzels, all smothered in rich cinnamon syrup, light and crisp on the outside with the insides soft and chewy. But I have been telling myself to go and try making the food I love to eat instead of lazily going to the mall just to buy some, so I decided to bake a small batch of pretzels for this afternoon's snack. Alex was thrilled to get his hands on some freshly baked pretzels. The ones in the photo above are specially made to bring him a small message.

Considering that it was my first time making these, I was contented with the way it turned out. The taste and the crisp outer layer covering the soft chewy inside was almost perfect, but the way the pretzels looked were a bit of a disappointment. I actually had a really hard time trying to twist it into a pretzel shape, and I had to admit to myself that I should have kneaded the dough a bit longer as my mind has been telling me to. Laziness does have its dire consequences. Setting the looks aside, the pretzels were amazingly delicious even on its own. And it was even better with cinnamon-sugar syrup smothered all over it.

By the way, the alkaline wash is a must-do. This is a traditional way of making pretzels. Omitting this step would only produce regular bread, without the distinct pretzel taste.

This recipe yields 10 large pretzels.

Homemade Pretzels Recipe

Note: I use measuring spoons and measuring cups for my recipes, so if you're using normal utensils the measurements would not be accurate and much less than indicated.

  • 1 1/2 tsp active dry yeast
  • 2 tbsps brown sugar
  • 1 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 cups warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
Alkaline Wash
  • 1 cup warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
  • 1 tbsp baking soda
  1. In a large mixing bowl, mix the yeast, sugar and salt with warm water. 
  2. Slowly stir in flour and mix until well incorporated.
  3. Knead and punch dough on a floured surface until dough is smooth and elastic, for about 8 to 10 minutes. 
  4. Grease a large bowl which can accommodate at least 4 times the size of the dough.
  5. Place dough in a greased bowl, and turn to coat the surface. Cover, and let rise for one hour.
  6. Make the alkaline wash by combining 1 cup of warm water and baking soda in bowl.
  7. After dough has risen, cut into 12 equal pieces. 
  8. Roll each piece into a pencil-thin log. 
  9. Twist into a pretzel shape, and dip into the baking soda solution. Dab bottom lightly with paper towels.
  10. Place on greased cookie sheets, and let rise for 5 minutes.
  11. Bake at 450 degrees F for 20 minutes, or until golden brown. 
  12. Smother with cinnamon-sugar syrup.

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