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Twist Yourself A Pretzel

  • Yield: 16 pretzels


  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 package active dry yeast
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt


  • Place the milk in a small saucepan. Heat over medium-low heat until warm, about 110?F on an instant-read thermometer. Remove from the heat.
  • Combine 1 tablespoon of the oil with the yeast and sugar in a large mixing bowl.
  • Pour in the warm milk and stir with a large wooden spoon or rubber spatula until the yeast and sugar are dissolved. After a few minutes you should see bubbles appear on the surface of the mixtureóthis will let you know that the yeast is working. Let rest until slightly thickened and foamy, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the flour and the salt to the yeast mixture, stirring well with a large wooden spoon or rubber spatula until all the flour is mixed in.
  • Place the dough on an unfloured work surface and knead until smooth, about 3 to 5 minutes. (Or you can mix the dough in a standing electric mixer fitted with a dough hook.)
  • Grease a large mixing bowl with the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil, place the dough in the bowl, and turn to coat lightly with the oil.
  • Cover with plastic wrap and let stand in a warm, draft-free place and let rise until doubled in size, about 2 hours.
  • Make sure that the oven rack is in the center position and preheat the oven to 425?F.
  • Beat the egg in a small mixing bowl and set aside.
  • Remove the dough from the bowl and use a rolling pin to roll it out onto an unfloured surface into a 12 by 10-inch rectangle. Itís good to measure with a ruler.
  • Cut the dough in half both vertically and horizontally, so that you end up with 4 rectangles of equal size. Repeat with each of the 4 pieces, and youíll end up with 16 equal-size pieces of dough.
  • Roll one piece between your hands and the surface to form a long, thin roll (like a snake), about 1/2 inch in diameter and 14 inches long. (Note: If the dough becomes too dry to work and will not stretch, wet your hands slightly and then try rolling it again.)
  • Bring the ends up to form a U shape and cross one end over the other at the top. Bring the ends down and across each other as though making a bow and press down on the ends to seal.
  • Place the formed pretzel on an ungreased baking sheet and repeat with the remaining pieces of dough, keeping the pretzels at least an inch apart.
  • With a pastry brush, paint each pretzel with the beaten egg and sprinkle lightly with the kosher salt.
  • Bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes.
  • Using oven mitts or pot holders, remove the baking sheet from the oven and transfer the pretzels with a turner to wire racks to cool.
  • Serve warm or at room temperature.
  • If itís too difficult to make traditional pretzel shapes, try making simple twists. They taste just as good!

Recipe Details