I made these yesterday and they were SO good!! :)
Makes 16 pretzels:
1 package active dry yeast
1½ cups warm water
2 Tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
4 ¼ to 4 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
1 egg, beaten
- In a large bowl, dissolve the yeast in the warm water. Add the sugar and the 1 teaspoon salt. Gradually stir in the 4 cups of the flour to make a dough; add additional flour if the dough is too sticky.
- Turn our the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Knead in enough of the remaining flour to make a moderately soft dough that is smooth and elastic (3 to 5 minutes total). Shape the dough into a ball. Place the ball in a greased bowl; turn once to grease the surface of the dough. Cover the bowl and let the dough rise in a warm place until doubled in size (about 45 minutes).
- Punch down the dough. Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Cover the dough and let it rest for 10 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 350°. Roll the dough into a 12x8- inch rectangle. Cut the dough rectangle into sixteen 12x 1/2 inch strips. Gently pull each dough strip into a rope about 16 inches long.
- On a greased baking sheet, shape each dough rope into a pretzel by crossing 1 end over the other to form a circle, leaving about 4 inches at each end.
- Take 1 3nd of the dough in each hand and twist once at the point where the dough overlaps. Carefully life each end across to the opposite edge of the circle; tuck the ends under to make a pretzel shape. Moisten the ends with water and press to seal them in place. Brush the tops of the pretzels with the beaten egg. Sprinkle with the coarse salt.
- Bake in the 350° oven about 18 minutes or until the pretzels are lightly browned. Transfer the pretzels to a wire rack to cool.
Moistening the ends of the shaped pretzels with water before sealing them will help keep them in place so that they don't pop up.
If you prefer, you can sprinkle the pretzels with poppy seed or sesame seed (or even cinnamon and sugar!) instead of the coarse salt in this recipe.
Store any leftover pretzels in an airtight bag or a covered container.
--From Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook--