Learn more about the development of this recipe in my related post, How to Make Soft Pretzel Breadsticks
These pretzels breadsticks are every bit as warm, toasty, and satisfyingly chewy as classic twisted pretzels, but easier to dip and share. Best served hot from the oven, or within 1-2 days. Reheats well in a toaster oven. Try serving with Whipped Pumpkin Butter or Pimento Cheese.
If you wish, you can brush the pretzels with beaten egg after boiling and before sprinkling on salt. This will provide an attractive sheen, but dampens the toasty flavor of the crust.
Special Equipment: Standing Mixer with Dough Hook attachment, instant-read thermometer, 12-inch skillet with cover, 2 baking sheets, parchment paper, sharp knife or razor blade for slashing dough
|3 cups (16.5 ounces) bread flour, plus more for dusting work surface
3 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon active dry yeast
1 teaspoon (6 grams) table salt
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup very warm (110 degrees) water
|Place ingredients in bowl of standing mixer. With spoon or spatula, mix together to form a rough dough.
Using standing mixer fitted with dough hook attachment, mix at low speed until smooth elastic ball forms, 5 to 7 minutes. The dough will be rather stiff.
Transfer dough to large lightly oiled bowl, turning to coat lightly with oil. Cover with kitchen towel and set in warm spot until puffy and doubled in volume, about 1 1/2 hours (may take more or less time depending on ambient temperature).
Adjust oven rack to middle position, and preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Press the dough down with your fist to deflate, pressing out any large air bubbles, and transfer to lightly floured work surface. Divide dough into 14 equal pieces, about 2 ounces each.
Press one piece of dough into a 5 1/2 x 2 inch rectangle of even thickness. Roll the dough into a cylinder along the long edge (like a jelly roll). With seam facing up, tuck ends of dough up, then pinch ends and center seam well to seal.
Set aside with seam facing down. Repeat with remaining pieces of dough. Cover shaped breadsticks with a towel.
6 cups water
3 tablespoons baking soda
|In 12-inch skillet, add water and baking soda. Stir well to dissolve baking soda in water. Cover, and bring to a boil. Meanwhile, line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
Gently place half of breadsticks in boiling water, top side down, for 30 seconds. Using wire skimmer or slotted spoon, carefully flip breadsticks to other side and boil for 30 seconds. Remove breadsticks and drain well. Repeat with remaining breadsticks.
|Very coarse salt, such as Maldon sea salt, or pretzel salt||Transfer breadsticks to prepared baking sheets, spacing at least 2 inches apart. Using sharp knife or razor blade, make 3 diagonal acute slashes along the top of each breadstick, and sprinkle with coarse salt.
Bake for 12 to 16 minutes, until pretzels are deeply browned. Place baking sheets on wire racks to cool. Serve hot.
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