Golden Pretzels

As a child I remember loving pretzels but it was something I maybe had once a year. I made pretzels for the first time a few months ago and absolutely love making them. If you plan on making this recipe do it on a day you have lots of free time. The pretzels are crunchy and so tasty. You can eat them solely or with vegan cream cheese or your favorite mustard. Store in an airtight container for a few days and can be easily warmed in the oven for 10 minutes. If any are left over which I doubt you will, freezing some is always an option. 

Prep Time: 2-3 hours | Cook Time: 35 | Serving Size: 24

Ingredients

5 cups of flour ( organic whole wheat spelt or white spelt)

4 1/2 tsp. dry active yeast

3 tbsp. agave ( activate the yeast)

1 cups warm water ( tepid )

1 cup room temp. milk

3 tbsp. vegan butter ( room temp.)

4 tbsp. baking soda

6 cups of filtered water

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Add the flour to a large mixing bowl. Using your hand or a spoon form a well in the center of the flour. Add the water to the center forming a pool. Then add the yeast and agave. Mix lightly with a small spoon or fork until the yeast is completely dissolved. Try to avoid knocking flour into the water. Allow to rest for about 10 minutes, until the yeast is activated. It should begin to bubble and rise.
  1. Add the milk and 2 tbsp. of butter to the yeast in the middle. Using your hand mix the everything together. Keep mixing the flour in until it is completely mixed in. The mixture should be slightly sticky once well blended together. If the mixture is too sticky where it sticks to your hand add more flour a tbsp. at a time. Continue the process until the mixture is slightly sticky to the touch. 
  1. Form the mixture into a large ball. Coat your hand with the butter and rub evenly onto the dough. Place in a large mixing bowl and allow to rise for about 2-3 hours.The dough should more than triple in size.
  1. Using your hands gently punch down the dough in the middle. It should slowly fall down into the bowl. Using a dull knife cut the dough into half and set half aside. Separate one half into 4 sections. Roll each section in your hands to form a ball. Continue for the remaining 3 sections. Set each ball aside on a baking sheet and allow to rise for another hour. They should double in size while proofing.
  1. Using the other half take a small section of dough about the size of a table spoon. Flour your hands and gently rub dough between your palms, rolling back and forth forming a long rope shape. Fold the dough and form a pretzel shape. Place on a cookie sheet and allow to rise for another hour. The pretzels should double in size.

Baking Soda Bath

  1. In a medium size pot add the six cups of water and bring to a boil on a medium fire.  When the water starts boing add the baking soda and lower the stove to low heat. Add the pretzels one at a time. Using a stainless steel lifter keep rotating the  pretzel until fully coated in the mixture for about 60 seconds. Remove from the water, place on a baking sheet, sprinkle the salt on the top. Continue the process until all the pretzels are soaked in the bath and salted.
  1. Remove a roll from the baking sheet, using a knife mark an x on the top. Reshape and add to the baking soda wash. Rotate to get the entire roll coated. Remove from the water using the lifter. Reshape with a spoon. Sprinkle salt on the top. Continue this step for the remainder of the rolls. 
  1. When all the pretzels are ready place into oven and bake for about 35 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and cool for 10 minutes. Remove from the baking sheet and place on a cooling rack. 
  1. Enjoy warm with your favorite mustard or vegan cream cheese.

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