This recipe is personal for Paul as when he worked in New York, he used to make over 500 of these every day for the cast and crew of the film Carlito’s Way.
After making so many every day, you won’t find a better pretzel twister!
Makes 9 pretzels
625g Plain Flour
350ml Luke Warm Water
120ml Warm Milk
2 tsp Salt
1 tbsp yeast
1 tsp Sugar
6 tbsp Baking Soda
Pretzel Salt or Sea Salt Flakes
1. In a large bowl or mixer, combine the warm water with the yeast and lightly stir and let it stand for 5 minutes.
2. In another bowl mix the flour, salt and sugar together.
3. When the yeast has dissolved add the flour mixture and the warm milk.
4. Using the dough hook attachment of your mixer, mix everything together until the dough comes together and is no longer sticky. If you don’t have a mixer, oil a work surface and your hands and knead for 10 minutes. Do not add more flour as this will toughen the mixture.
5. Put the dough mixture into an oiled bowl, cover and leave it to rise for an hour and a half.
6. When the dough has risen, punch it down and divide it into 9 pieces. Take each piece and roll it into a long rope about 3-4 feet and ¾ inch thick in diameter.
7. Shape each rope into a pretzel shape. You do this by making a U shape with the dough, take the left strand and cross it with the right. Now take the left strand of the dough and bring it to the bottom right of the U shape and the right to the left bottom left. You now have your traditional pretzel shape.
8. Let the pretzel dough rise uncovered for a further 15 minutes.
9. Pre-heat your oven to 260 degrees C Gas Mark 9-10
10. In a large pot, add 2 litres of water and bring it to a boil, add the baking soda.
Be careful as it will fizz up as you add it to the water.
11. Lower the pretzels into the water and leave them for 15 -20 seconds.
12. Return the pretzels to a baking sheet lined with baking paper, sprinkle the pretzels with the salt.
13. Bake until dark brown this will take 10-12 minutes
14. Remove from the oven and serve warm with American mustard or warm cheese dip.