soft pretzels, refreshed

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Now, I know it has been barely two years since I told you about making miniature soft pretzels at home but according to my calculations, at least three-quarters of you weren’t around back then and that means you might be missing out. And that would be terrible.

Because making pretzels at home is such a fun weekend project. It’s a little more time-consuming than your standard loaf, but given the dismally dry, flavorless state of pretzel stands these days, so incredibly more worth your time. While the dough is a fairly standard one — flour, water, yeast, salt and sugar — the magic comes when you drop your little knots into a bath of boiling water and baking soda, as the second the little roll hits the bubbles, your kitchen will smell like a pretzelrie.

What, no such thing exists? Such a shame. I’d open one and serve these and bretzel rolls and spicy mustards from around the world and chocolate chip blondies with bits of hard salty pretzels baked inside and rich German beers and live happily ever after. Ahem, not that I’ve given this any thought or anything. In the meanwhile, there are these. And you should totally make them.

Dipping mustard: Okay, I am so not one to plug products, but we discovered Herlochers Dipping Mustard while deliciously buzzed at a North Fork winery last fall and seriously, still traumatized by the 1990s, I do not like honey mustard one bit but this, this was something else. We bought a jar which proceeded to collect dust in our pantry for months, only unearthing it to serve with these pretzels at a Super Bowl party. It was a match made in heaven.

“Pretzel salt”: Where to get pretzel salt? The real deal can be bought online or in some cooking/baking supply shops. However, we use an inexpensive, coarse sea salt to fill our salt grinders at home that happens to look almost exactly like pretzel salt. The brand is Baleine and I see it around everywhere. Best part, you won’t get stuck with something you can’t use for anything else.

One year ago: Pear and Almond Tart
Two years ago: Vegetable Dumplings

[Soft pretzel recipe, in the archives.]

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