perfectly warm, soft, and chewy

I love soft pretzels, do you?? I know, I know, it’s typical mall rat food, or the kind you can find at football and baseball games. You KNOW you have indulged before, let’s be honest here! Shall I try and jog your memory? You know, Auntie Annie’s, Wetzels pretzels etc! I’m not ashamed to admit that I often pick one up if I am at the mall. It’s the perfect snack, and my favorite flavor is just plain old salted original with cheese sauce.

It was pouring rain HARD yesterday, and for some odd reason, I was craving one of these babies oh so badly. I sure was not about to treck out to a mall in rainy weather, just for a pretzel~ so I decided to do a little research on the ingredients. It turns out the ingredients in this recipe are SUPER simple, and are things you would have available already in your kitchen cupboards! Don’t you love when that happens??  Faster than the lightening that was touching the ground, I decided to whipped some up, right at home.

recipe from Joy of Cooking Cookbook

you will need:

In a bowl combine (one cup of warm water and 4 teaspoons of active yeast) Stir this around and make sure it has dissolved.

then stir in-

1 tablespoon of sugar

1.5 cups of sifted white flour

1/2 teaspoon of salt

tablespoon of butter

Stir in 1.25 cups of flour, and then start using your hands and kneed the dough into a ball. Place it in a bowl and cover with saran wrap. Wait till the ball has grown- (doubled in size)- then you know its ready to bake.

separate the ball into 6 pieces- little fat pretzels or 12 pieces- for big skinny pretzels. Roll into sticks with your hands-just keep a bowl of flour nearby and just keep making sure your hands are covered flour to help the dough not stick to your hands.

get a large pot ( can’t be aluminum , non stick works the best) and put in

4 cups of water

1/2 cup of baking soda

submerge the pretzels completely for about a minute each. Do only one or two at a time so they don’t accidentally stick together.

take out of the water and place on a greased pan. Use Kosher or Mediterranean salt to season.

Throw them in the oven, for 475 degrees for about 10-12 mins. While they are making, make your cheese sauce. Super easy- I use a tweeked version of this recipe, but use swiss and cheddar cheese. Makes things super creamy!

3 tablespoons butter

3 tablespoons flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon ground black or white pepper

1 1/2 cups milk 

1/2 cup of each- grated sharp Cheddar cheese and Swiss cheese cut up into small pieces.

Preparation:

Melt butter; remove from heat. Stir in flour and seasonings. Gradually add milk, stirring until well mixed. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until thickened and smooth. Cook for 5 minutes longer; add cheese. Stir until smooth and well blended.

get them out of the oven.  You will know when they’re ready when you see a golden brown color.

the result??

I have to say my taste buds were than satisfied. I’m not going to tell you how many I ate either!

They were SOOO good.

the perfect snack.