Cheddar Garlic Soft Pretzels
By Sue Lau | Palatable Pastime
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Time for #BreadBakers to break into 2018! And this month the topic is on pretzels.
I get sentimental with the passing of each year. I was just thinking back to when I was a kid, in the 1960’s out in the backyard with cousins and family, and the kids were all asking and talking about where we thought we might be in the year 2000, if we had jobs, or kids, or married. Funny that it seemed like life might be like the cartoon The Jetsons, with everyone flying around in space ships.
And here it is, 2018 long past the time of all that, and seemingly very normal. Except everyone is all that much older now, and almost all of my birth family now passed away. I contemplate what has happened in the whirlwind of time since then. I never really guessed cooking would be so important to me, but it is.
It hadn’t been too long after 2000 that I made soft pretzels for the first time. They are easy enough to make, especially since I got the Kitchen-Aid precise heat mixing bowl. It has a time and a temperature control. It makes getting dough together so much easier for me, and I have even used it to make yogurt twice in the week that I have had it. It attaches to the mixer if you want, and has it’s own little attachments, but so far I have just used it by itself sitting on the counter top, because it doesn’t need to be attached. It also recommends using it to temper chocolate, although I already have a Wilton dipping pot to do that, and the silicone tubs make it easy to refrigerate and pop out the excess chocolate easily and without waste. I liked that thing so much I bought one for my daughter so she could make chocolate dipped potato chips, among other things.
Rolling out the pretzels themselves is a lot of fun- and would be especially for kids since it involves rolling the dough into ropes. Of course, adults can do the blanching in the baking soda water, which is alkaline and helps add to the color of the pretzels. Another thing which helps is using the malt extract, which is a type of sugar (from barley if I recall correctly- my husband, the home brewer, would know for sure as that is often used in making beer). I have left a link where you can get that online.
As well, the cheddar cheese powder seems widely available online, although I don’t see it much in the stores locally. Besides being good for pretzels and other things, imagine the cheese popcorn you will be making with it. Last year, I had made some cheese powder from scratch, and I was successful at it, but it was a long process, and I have to say you would be better off to just buy the powder because you won’t save appreciably money-wise and definitely not with time since the cheese dries from a fresh state.
The only other thing I will mention is that these would be wonderful with a beer cheese dip, like they serve at Hofbrau Haus restaurants. I didn’t have time to make anything like that so just served with some mustard.
Be sure to join me tomorrow when I post with other bloggers on the topic of comfort foods. For me that would be General Tso’s Chicken, one of my favorites, and a bit of a treat since it is fried.
Cheddar and Garlic Soft Pretzels
- 1-1/2 cups water, warmed to 112°F.
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon malt extract
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1/4-ounce envelope active dry yeast
- 4 cups bread flour
- 1/2 cup cheddar cheese powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 cup melted and cooled butter
- nonstick cooking spray
- parchment paper
- 1 gallon water
- 2/3 cup baking soda
- 1 egg yolk (mixed with one tablespoon water)
- coarse salt (1-2 tbsp)
- crushed dried chives (1-2 tsp)
- grated Parmesan cheese (1-2 tbsp)
- Stir together the water, sugar, malt extract, salt and yeast; allow to sit quietly until it shows some bubble action.
- Place yeast mixture in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook.
- Stir together the flour, cheddar cheese powder and garlic powder, then add the flour mixture and the butter to the mixer, alternating each one, while it is running and kneading with the mixer until dough forms a smooth ball. If it is sticky, add a tiny bit of flour, if it is crumbly, add a tiny bit of warm water until it is balanced.
- Place the dough in an oiled bowl and keep warm around 112°F. until doubled in size (about an hour). I did use the KA Precise heat bowl.
- Preheat oven to 450°F.
- Line 1-2 half sheet pans with parchment paper.
- Bring water and baking soda (stir to mix) to a boil in a large pan.
- Spray a work surface lightly with nonstick cooking spray.
- Divide dough into eight pieces, rolling each out on the lightly oiled surface to about 24-30 inches. working from the center outwards as you roll.
- Bring the ends up in a u-shape and down into a heart shape, tucking the ends under and pressing lightly to pinch the dough where it crosses.
- Carefully drop the pretzels into the boiling baking soda water and blanch for about 30 seconds, lifting with a strainer or hamburger turner.
- Place drained pretzel on the parchment paper lined baking sheets.
- Primp them if necessary, laying them the way they should go if they came apart and use your finger to widen the holes (a bit larger than you think you will need, as they tend to rise a little more and swell closed during baking).
- Brush lightly with egg wash and sprinkle with a little coarse salt, crushed chives and a tiny sprinkle of Parmesan for good measure.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown, then cool on a wire rack until cool enough to handle and eat.
From the kitchen of palatablepastime.com
- Authentic German Pretzels from Sara’s Tasty Buds
- Ballpark Pretzels from Karen’s Kitchen Stories
- Beer Pretzels from Passion Kneaded
- Buttery Pretzels from Ambrosia
- Cheddar Garlic Soft Pretzels from Palatable Pastime
- Cheese Jalapeño Stuffed Pretzel Rolls from Herbivore Cucina
- Cinnamon Sugar Pretzel Bites from Cook’s Hideout
- Cinnamon Sugar Soft Pretzels from Hostess At Heart
- Double Soda Pretzels from Food Lust People Love
- German Pretzel Rolls from All That’s Left Are The Crumbs
- Honey Mustard Snack Pretzels from Cindy’s Recipes and Writings
- Pretzel Dogs from Sneha’s Recipe
- Pretzel Sticks from A Day in the Life on the Farm
- Saffron Pretzel Rolls from The Schizo Chef
- Soft Whole Wheat Pretzels from What Smells So Good?
- Sourdough Soft Pretzels from Baking Sense
- Whole Wheat Pretzel Bites from I camp in my kitchen
#BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. Follow our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated each month on this home page.
We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient.