The title says it all. Does it get any better than a hot buttered pretzel? Especially when you don’t have to brave the mall to get it? I rarely post a recipe the exact same day I make it but these were just too good not to share right away. (That, and they’re almost gone already…so I figured I might as well!) These are so easy to make. They really don’t take much time at all, as far as yeast-containing baked goods go, and most of that time is just waiting for the dough to rest at various stages. And there are only a handful of ingredients that most people have on hand anyway. I know I do. Or at least I did, until I made these, and now we are out of flour! The tragedy! So hurry to your kitchen and start a batch of these decadent buttery, salty, heavenly treats right now!
Hot Buttered Pretzels
taken straight out of the King Arthur Flour Baker’s Companion, which I borrowed from my lovely local library but which I may need to own very soon just so I’ll have more time to play with delicious recipes like this one!
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast*
- 7/8 to 1 cup warm water**
- 1/2 cup warm water
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- coarse salt
- 3 tablespoons melted butter
*If you are using active dry yeast, add the yeast to the bowl first, then the water and stir to let the yeast hydrate for a few minutes before adding the additional ingredients. With instant yeast, this step isn’t needed.
**The recipe says to use more in the winter and less in the summer – the goal is for a soft dough. It is January…I used 1 cup…the dough was perfect.
Place all dough ingredients in a large bowl or the bowl of a mixer and beat until combined. (See note about yeast.) Knead dough by hand or in the mixer for about 5 minutes until the dough is soft and smooth. Dust with flour to keep from sticking and place in a plastic bag. Seal bag and let rest for about 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 500°. Prepare two baking sheets by either lightly greasing or lining with parchment paper.
Remove dough from bag and place on a lightly greased work surface. Divide dough evenly into 8 portions. Let rest, uncovered, for about 5 minutes.
Combine the 1/2 cup warm water and teaspoon of sugar, mixing until sugar is dissolved. Roll each piece of dough out into a long rope (about 28 inches) and twist into a pretzel shape. Dip pretzels into sugar water and place on prepared baking sheets. Sprinkle with coarse salt and let rest for about 10 minutes.
Bake for 8-9 minutes, until pretzels are golden brown. Remove from oven and brush thoroughly with melted butter. Eat warm and enjoy the fruits of your labor!
A couple notes – I have not had time to experiment with this recipe (yet!) but I daresay I might add another teaspoon of sugar to the sugar water mixture. One of my favorite things about mall pretzels is their somewhat sweet-salty taste. These had that, but I’d like to try to intensify the sweet just a touch. Also, it is a LOT OF BUTTER. The original recipe even says, “Keep brushing the butter on until you’ve used it all; it may seem like a lot, but that’s what gives these pretzels their ethereal taste.” True. Very true. But…I think I might cut down on the butter next time just a little. A smidge, even.
I may just need to go finish off the last of them now…mmm…