When I first saw this recipe, I immediately emailed it to Alex. His response was precisely what I expected. He asked that I make them as soon as possible since they looked amazing. I couldn’t have agreed more.
Unfortunately life got in the way and before I knew it months had gone by without these pretzel delights. Luckily, this weekend I found the time to make some. They. Were. Awesome.
The pretzel dough was soft and chewy with a light salted, buttery finish. The cheese adds nice flavor and little extra chew. Each bite was well worth the three plus hours it took to make them. Trust me, when I say you won’t be sorry you made these.
Cheesy Pretzel Bites
(recipe from Sweet Pea’s Kitchen)
- 3/4 tsp active dry yeast
- 1 Tbsp plus 1/2 tsp packed brown sugar, divided
- 2 Tbsp warm water (110˚F)
- 1/2 cup warm milk (110˚F)
- 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup shredded cheese (I used cheddar)
- 3 cups water
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 2 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
- 1/2 Tbsp kosher salt
Gather your ingredients.
(The water and butter were too shy to be photographed but I think you know what they look like.)
In a small bowl, combine the yeast, 1/2 teaspoon brown sugar, and warm water and let rest 5-8 minutes until foamy.
In another bowl, stir together the remaining 1 tablespoon of brown sugar and warm milk until dissolved.
In a large bowl, add 1 1/4 cups flour. Pour in milk mixture and the yeast.
Combine all ingredients until a smooth ball of dough forms.
If dough is sticky, you can add up to an additional 1/4 cup flour. Mine was pretty sticky, as you can see from the picture above. I slowly added flour one tablespoon at a time. In the end I only need 2 tablespoons to reduce the stickiness and used the remaining two when kneading the dough.
Once the dough comes together into a smooth ball, knead it for 5 to 8 minutes until it is smooth and elastic.
Transfer the dough to a bowl sprayed with olive oil cooking spray. Spray the dough with oil and cover with plastic wrap.
Let the dough rise at room temperature until doubled in size, about 2 to 2 1/2 hours.
After the dough has risen, remove the dough and place onto a lightly floured surface. Divide into 2 equal pieces. Roll one piece into a 12×4-inch rectangle. Gently press 1/4 cup of cheese into the bottom portion of the dough.
Roll-up very tightly, starting with the end that has the cheese. Cut into 12 1-inch pieces and transfer to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Repeat with remaining portion of dough. I ended up with about 27 pieces because I had a little extra dough. No worries, it just means more pretzels :-)
Let the pretzels rest, uncovered, at room temperature for 30 minutes and preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
In a large saucepan, bring water to a boil. Add the baking soda and turn heat to low. Slowly boil pretzels in batches, putting the pretzels into the poaching liquid, seam side down.
Poach for 10 seconds then carefully turn the pretzel over in the liquid. Poach other side for 10 seconds then remove with a slotted spoon to the same prepared sheet pan, seam side down. Repeat with the remaining pretzels.
Bake in preheated oven until golden-brown, about 15 minutes. Once the pretzels are removed from the oven, brush melted butter on top and sprinkle with salt.
I have submitted this recipe to Yeastspotting.
Have you ever made homemade soft pretzels?