Pretzels are twists of bread dough baked until crisp. Traditional German pretzels are sprinkled with salt but you can also use sesame seeds, poppy seeds or a few chilli flakes for a spicy snack. Bread dough is easy to make but flours do vary and some absorb more water than others, so if the dough feels dry add a little more water. Kneading the dough until smooth and stretchy makes it easier to shape the dough finished dough into pretzels. Once baked pretzels will keep in an airtight container for up to 1 week. If you’re watching your weight pretzels are a healthier alternative to crisps.
- 300g strong white bread flour
- 1tsp fast action dried yeast
- 1 tsp salt
- 200ml lukewarm water
- 1 egg beaten with 1tbsp water, to glaze
- Coarse sea salt, sesame seeds, poppy seeds or chilli flakes for sprinkling
Mix together the flour, dried yeast and salt in a bowl. Add the water (make sure it is only just warm, if it’s too hot it will kill the yeast and the dough won’t rise) and using your hand, mix to form a dough. If the dough feels too dry add a little more water.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for about 10 mins until smooth and stretchy. To knead, push the heel of your hand into the dough and stretch it away from you. Roll the dough back towards you, give it a quarter turn and repeat. Put the dough into a clean bowl, cover loosely with clingfilm and leave in a warm place for 11/2-hours until doubled in size.
Line two baking sheets with baking paper and pre-heat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Fan 180°C/Gas Mark 6. Turn the risen dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead briefly. Divide into 30 even-sized pieces and roll each one into a 20cm long sausage. To shape, bring the two ends together and cross one on top of the other, securing with a dab of beaten egg. Place on the baking trays and brush with beaten egg. Sprinkle with salt, seeds or chilli flakes and bake for 10 mins until golden and crisp. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
Instead of making your own dough use a packet bread miz adding the quantity of water stated on the packet instructions.