Okay, so I'll be honest. I made this recipe with the intention of creating full-on soft pretzels in honor of my dad's 60th birthday (since he is obsessed with all things pretzel). However, for some reason the dough kept shrinking in on itself, and forming these knots naturally. I went with it, and hey, they are still delicious.
GLUTEN-FREE (OR FULL) SOFT PRETZEL KNOTS (Adapted from this recipe at The Cottage Market)
- 2 3/4 cups all purpose flour (for gluten-free, I used Bob's Red Mill. For wheat, use regular all-purpose)
- 1 tsp. of salt
- 1 tsp. of sugar
- 1 package of active dry yeast (1/4oz) fast rising or regular will work fine
- 1 cup warm water
For Baking Soda bath, use:
- 1/8 cup of warm water and 2 tsp. baking soda
For topping warm pretzels:
- 3 tbsp melted butter
- kosher salt to taste
- (or, a mixture of 1/4 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 cup white or brown sugar for sweet pretzels)
- Preheat the oven to 500 degrees
- Put all of the dough ingredients into a bowl and mix well forming a nice dough and then knead for at least 5 minutes. I used my KitchenAid mixer with the dough hook.
- The dough should be smooth, soft and pliable. You can add a little more water if needed. When it is ready, pat into a ball and place it in a nice glass bowl that has been lightly coated with olive oil, cover with cling wrap and put it in a warm dark place, like a preheated oven with the oven then turned off.) Then let it rise to double the size (can take about 40 minutes to an hour).
- Now take the dough and roll it into a thick log and cut into 8 equal parts. Then roll into lengths about 10 inches and form your pretzels. The Cottage Market links this 15 second video to see how to twist your pretzel. I did it this way but my dough kept rolling into a tight knot, so I just went with that shape or cut pretzel nuggets from the long line of dough.
- Now is the time to make your baking soda wash. Add the warm water to the baking soda and mix good, now brush (using a pastry brush) the wash over the whole outside of the pretzel and repeat for all of them.
- Pop them in the over and cook for 9 minutes, they should be a rich pretzel brown.
- Remove from the oven, melt your butter and apply to all of the pretzels with the pastry brush and sprinkle with salt…or coat them in butter and cinnamon and sugar, you can't really go wrong, even though they aren't a traditional pretzel shape.
Even though they were mostly knots, I still managed to get one or two "pretzely" shapes out of the gluten-free version of the dough (see below). The gluten-free iteration was a little dry after the first day.. best to enjoy them hot on the first day with a nice Coke or Diet Coke like my dad has taught me since I was little.
And Gus was happy regardless - he enjoyed his by treating it like a pretzel roll and making gluten-free pretzel bread sandwiches. Om nom nom, I say!