The love Philadelphia has for the Soft Pretzel is nearly legendary. Some statistics put consumption of the doughy knots at ten times the national average. When you buy them there, you’ll likely get a more compact knot than you would traditionally find elsewhere. That’s a consequence of cooking so many of them at a time to keep up with demand. You can choose the shape you like.
Source: Big American Cookbook
In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix 1/4 cup of the warm water with the yeast and let stand about 10 minutes. With the dough hook attachment, stir in the remaining 1 1/2 cups warm water, 4 cups of the flour, and the salt. Add more flour 1/4 cup at a time if necessary to make a stiff dough. Knead the dough for 10 minutes.
Lightly oil a large bowl. Form the dough into a ball, put it in the bowl, and cover with a towel. Allow to rise for 1 hour. It should about double in size.
Preheat the oven to 475°F. Spray a couple of baking sheets with cooking spray. Bring a large, heavy pot half-filled with water to a boil over medium-high heat, then add the baking soda.
Quarter the dough, and then cut each quarter into 3 equal pieces. Roll one piece out to about 18 inches long. Hold it up with one end in each hand, set the middle of the “U” on the counter, cross the two ends and fold them back down onto the dough. If you’ve ever seen a pretzel, this should make more sense when you do it.
Drop pretzels, one at a time, in the boiling water and cook for 15 seconds, then remove it with tongs and place on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with enough pretzels to fill the baking sheet. Sprinkle the pretzels with the coarse salt. Bake for 13 to 15 minutes, until dark brown. Serve with mustard.
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|Serving Size: 1 Serving (310g)|
|Recipe Makes: 12 Servings|
|Calories from Fat: 1661 (93%)|
|Amt Per Serving||% DV|
|Total Fat 184.6g||246 %|
|Saturated Fat 116.7g||583 %|
|Monounsaturated Fat 47.8g|
|Polyunsanturated Fat 7.1g|
|Cholesterol 488.1mg||150 %|
|Sodium 2493.3mg||86 %|
|Potassium 112.7mg||3 %|
|Total Carbohydrate 34.9g||10 %|
|Dietary Fiber 1.3g||5 %|
|Sugars, other 33.7g|
|Protein 6.6g||9 %|
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Calories per serving: 1794
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