The first food blog I started to follow was Yammie’s Noshery and that was after finding her recipe to make Auntie Anne’s pretzels about two years ago. I made them, we ate them. They were wonderful, tasting of New York, triggering many good memories. And I started to follow Yammie’s blog. She impresses me by her mature outlook to life. She is only 20 now.
We had an afternoon at mum’s yesterday, a relaxed afternoon of baking and eating. It nearly felt like turning back the clock, cementing the calendar watching my children happy in the garden, dogs and all the menagerie …. time … if only we can stop it, if only we have more of it, such a precious commodity …..
And time gave us a break yesterday and the afternoon stood still as I baked Auntie Anne’s pretzels. I made a few minor changes to Yammie’s recipe and if you are going to make pretzels, look at Yammie’s step-by-step photos. She is a more skilled photographer than I am, but here are mine at the pre-oven stage.
For 12 Pretzels you will need :
1 1/2 Tablespoons dry yeast, equivalent to 2 sachets
3 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons carob syrup (but if not available use brown sugar only)
4 tablespoons melted butter
4 1/2 cups flour
2 teaspoons salt
And you need to dip the pretzels in this solution before baking:
1/3 cup baking soda
3 cups warm water
6 tablespoons melted butter
Warm up milk and it should reach 100F (37C). If you bake and cook often, it is worthwhile investing in a food thermometer. Stir in the yeast and let it rest for 5 minutes. Do not over heat the milk as it will kill the yeast, Add the butter and sugar. Add the flour, a cup at a time and finally the salt. Knead for 10 minutes. I do it by hand but you can also use an electric mixer. it in a lightly greased bowl in a warm place, covered up with a kitchen towel for 1 hour or until it doubles in size.
cut into 12 equal pieces and roll each one into a long sausage shape, as thin as possible.
Combine the warm water and baking soda in a bowl and dip each pretzel into the solution, Placed in a tray covered with baking paper. Sprinkle with sea salt and bake for about 10 minutes at 220C until they brown.
While they are still hot brush them with melted butter!
And on an island in the heart of the Mediterranean, we spent an afternoon basking in the winter sunshine beneath the blueness of the clear skies eating Yammie's pretzels straight out of the oven while they were still hot….