Pretzel Rolls. Finally.

Pretzel Rolls 

We have a bakery near our church that we like to frequent for one reason:  pretzel rolls.   Not quite a pretzel and not quite a roll, these soft bread-like treats are perfect for breakfast, snacks, or even as a bun for a gourmet burger.  But at nearly a dollar per roll, there had to be a better way to have these in larger quantities.  

I tried a variety of recipes – of which none came close to a real pretzel roll.  After many attempts, I came up with the one below.  Finally.

Pretzel Rolls

 

Pretzels/pretzel rolls 

 

 

Pretzel Rolls
Yields 16
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
1 hr 45 min
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
1 hr 45 min
For the dough
  1. 6 tablespoons butter, melted
  2. 1.5 cups very warm tap water
  3. 1 pkg yeast
  4. 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  5. 4.5 cups flour
  6. 2 teaspoons salt
  7. Pot of water
  8. 2/3 cup baking soda
For the egg wash
  1. 1 egg
  2. 2 tablespoons water
  3. Coarse salt
Instructions
  1. In a mixer with dough hook attached, add the butter, water, yeast and brown sugar. Mix and let sit for 5 minutes.
  2. Add the flour and salt to the yeast mixture. Turn on mixer and knead for 3 minutes.
  3. Remove dough from mixer,shape into a ball and put into a greased bowl. Cover and let rise 1 hour in a warm location.
  4. Boil a large pot of water with the 2/3 cups baking soda. This is the step that makes a pretzel roll pretzel-y! Remove dough to a working surface and divide into 16 small pieces,trying to shape each into a ball. With a serrated knife,cut an “X”in the top of each roll.
  5. Boil rolls a few at a time for 30 seconds. Drain with a slotted spoon to remove and place on cookie sheets lined with parchment and also sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. (Or just grease your sheets very,very well)
  6. Bake in a 425 oven for 6 minutes. Remove from oven and brush rolls with an egg wash (1 beaten egg and 2T water) and top with coarse salt. Return to oven and bake till browned nicely all over,about 6-8 minutes more.
  7. If you eat them hot they will be doughy. Self control. Wait till they are mostly cool and then dig in!
Notes
  1. Experiment with different shapes if you want!
Adapted from kevin {&} amanda
Adapted from kevin {&} amanda
The Excellent Wife http://theexcellentwife.com/

Healthier Cereal: Homemade & Store Bought

Children love cereals.  And in this home, husbands do too.  Did you ever notice that most kid-friendly cereals are more suitable for dessert than breakfast?  In fact, we sometimes have cereal for dessert around here! But that’s another post.  For now I wanted to share a quick tip on how I make store-bought cereal a bit healthier.

Easy, right?  We have a nice size cereal container:

So we simply mix equal parts (or whatever ratio you’d like) of a sweetened cereal with its unsweetened counterpart.  Really any two cereals will work – they don’t have to “match”.  For example, you could mix plain Cheerios with Apple Jacks if you wanted.

Now for our favorite cereal.  It’s homemade!

photo by lissa.destef {http://www.flickr.com/photos/findingpurpose/}

This breakfast item is more budget-friendly than store bought cereal.  It’s also healthier and tastier.  You’re in control of every added ingredient.  Feel free to make adjustments as you feel are necessary as you prepare this homemade treat for your family.

Homemade Granola Cereal

In a very large bowl mix 12 cups of oats, 1 cup of coconut, 1 cup of whole wheat flour, 1/4 cup of flax seed, 1/2 cup of powdered milk, and 1 teaspoon of salt.

In a smaller microwaveable bowl combine 1 cup of olive oil, 1.5 cups of honey, and 1 tablespoon of vanilla.  Heat it long enough to melt the honey.

Pour honey mixture over oats mixture and mix thoroughly.  Spread on two rimmed cookie sheets and bake at 300 for about 45 mintues, stirring every 15 minutes to prevent burning.  Remove and cool.

The best part of this super cereal is all the customizable additions.  Add chopped nuts, raisins, cranberries, dried fruits, carob chips, or whatever you’d like!  Serve with milk, yogurt, or just eat it plain.  ENJOY!

Candy Corn Cookies ~ Tutorial

These cookies are SO very cute!  I was pleasantly surprised to find that they were also simple to make.  I hope some of you will give these tasty treats a shot as they are sure to be a hit wherever you serve them.



First, mix up a double batch of your favorite sugar cookie recipe.  I love this lemon one from the Kathie Cooks blog which is where I learned to make these adorable candy corns.

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Then separate the dough into three equal-ish mounds.

Add food coloring to two of the mounds:  make one orange and one yellow.

Line something rectangular, such as a loaf pan or plastic container, with plastic wrap.  Layer the white dough, then orange, then yellow dough by pressing and stacking them.

Wrap in plastic then refrigerate until nice and solid. Slice the dough and then cut out triangles from your slices.

Arrange the triangles on parchment-lined cookie sheets.  I gave a little extra shaping to each of my triangles and I also flattened them out a bit so they don’t puff up as much when baking.

Bake.  Remove from the oven and dip in granulated sugar.  Let cool.  Serve!

Quesadillas with Chipotle Dipping Sauce

My daughter is out for the day with Grandma, so it’s just the boys, Dad and me.  I thought I’d put together a fun snack meal with chips, dips, and such.  We even had black cherry sodas in bottles.  Now that’s a treat around here!

Quesadilla

One of the quick, easy dishes I threw together was quesadillas.  I used leftover turkey, but in the future will use chicken.

Here’s how I did it:

Spread green salsa onto a flour tortilla (I’m sure red could be used, but I think tomatilloes go really well with this dish).  Top salsa with shredded cheddar, shredded chicken, and more cheddar.

Top with another tortilla & cook in a skillet till brown, then flip and brown other side.  Repeat with more quesadillas.

For the dipping sauce, combine in a bowl:  1/2 cup mayo, 1/2 cup light sour cream, 2-3 chopped chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, 1/2 teaspoon of cumin, 1 large minced garlic clove, the juice of 1/2 a lime, 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro, 3 sliced scallions, salt and pepper to taste.  Serve along side of quesadillas.