Author Topic: Soft Beer Pretzel  (Read 7701 times)

Offline flapjack

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Soft Beer Pretzel
« on: August 13, 2010, 09:07:25 AM »
I had some leftover beer pizza dough and decided to experiment using it to make soft pretzels.

-I equally portioned the dough and rolled out each piece into long ropes
-shaped them into pretzel form, placed them on a greased sheet pan. refrigerated for 2 hours
-preheated the oven to 450F
-boiled 1 quart of water. slowly added 1/8 C of baking soda & 2 tsp salt
-dropped pretzel into water for 15-20 seconds on each side
-place on greased baking sheet, sprinkled with Red Hawaiian sea salt
-baked for 15 minutes

a little more airy inside than the traditionally denser pretzel but tasted great
James
Flapjack Brew Club

On Tap: FlapJack O'lantern Pumpkin Cream Ale
Fermenting: Power Sit-Up Golden Strong Ale
Fermenting: Full Inch Imperial IPA
Next Brew: Vigilante Imperial Stout

Offline bluesman

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Re: Soft Beer Pretzel
« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2010, 09:12:38 AM »
Sounds great.  Beer and pretzels are a match made in heaven!
Ron Price

Offline denny

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Re: Soft Beer Pretzel
« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2010, 09:31:52 AM »
Jeff Renner has a classic pretzel recipe that he's posted through the years.  Jeff is a pro baker, so you KNOW it's gonna be good!


Jeff Renner’s pretzel recipe

From an old Homebrew Digest:

This recipe works well in a large mixer or food processor, and I have
formatted the recipe for this (see note for hand).

***********

Recipe
German Soft Pretzels
Makes 1 dozen

o 2 packets dry baker’s yeast
o 1/4 cup water 105-115 degrees F (40-45C)
o 1 ounce dry milk powder
o 3 ounces shortening
o 1/4 cup sugar
o 1 teaspoon (5 ml) salt
o 19 ounces all purpose flour (about 4 cups)
o enough additional water to make a soft dough – about 1 cup (note -
my notes say 3/4 cup, but I think this is a mistake – I’ll make up a
batch sometime soon and check).

Rehydrate the yeast in the 1/4 cup warm water and a pinch of sugar.
Be sure to use a container like a plastic cup that won’t suck all the
heat away. It should foam up in a few minutes.

Mix the rest of the dry ingredients in the mixer bowl or food
processor *. Add the yeast water when it’s well hydrated and foamy,
then turn on the mixer or processor and add water until you get a
soft dough. Continue mixing according to manufacturer’s instructions
until well kneaded.

* If you make the dough by hand, add the rehydrated yeast and other
ingredients with half the flour to a large bowl, stir with a wooden
spoon until mixed, then stir in as much of the rest of the flour as
possible, then turn out onto a work surface and knead in enough of
the rest of the flour to get a soft dough and knead it until it is
elastic and smooth, about five minutes.

Let the dough rise covered until doubled, probably 30 minutes with
all this yeast.

Now prepare the lye water. Put cold water in a non-reactive pot, add
1 tablespoon lye crystals (like Red Devil) for each quart. Add the
lye to the water, not the other way around! Use normal precautions.
You’re big boys and girls. Bring to a simmer.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

When the dough is doubled, divide into 12 equal pieces, roll out into
18″ lengths, then twist into pretzel shape. This is easy to do but
hard to describe with pictures.

Start with the dough in an upside-down “U”, then cross the legs twice
into a double twist. Next flip the top down over the legs and press
each part of the loop onto the legs where they cross, making a tack
weld.

Set aside on a towel and shape the rest of the pieces. Then starting
with the first one and using a slotted ladle or spatula (not your
fingers), immerse each pretzel in the simmering lye water for 30
seconds to one minute. They should expand and begin to float.
Remove it and place on a wet tea-towel to drain and sprinkle with
pretzel salt.

Now arrange on prepared cookie sheet (you will probably need to use
two cookie sheets and bake one at a time) and bake until done. In my
oven, this takes about 9 minutes. While they are cooling a bit, pour
yourself a well deserved pint and then enjoy the pretzels.

These freeze quite well when cool. Thaw them and pop them into the
oven to reheat or gently microwave them if you must.

- —
Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan USA
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

www.dennybrew.com

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Offline bluesman

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Re: Soft Beer Pretzel
« Reply #3 on: August 13, 2010, 09:38:12 AM »
I might have to give that one a try Denny.  I hear the oven design is key to making them crispy on the outside but yet keeping them soft in the middle.  Brick ovens are supposedly best. 

However that won't stop me from trying them in my gas fired oven on a pizza stone.   8)

Thanks to Jeff for the recipe.
Ron Price

Offline dbeechum

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Re: Soft Beer Pretzel
« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2010, 10:01:24 AM »
One of my favorite things to do with Jeff's recipe is sub the water for the pretzel with a doppelbock or helles bock. Damn fine.
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Offline flapjack

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Re: Soft Beer Pretzel
« Reply #5 on: August 13, 2010, 02:15:17 PM »
Thanks Denny! I will definitely try Jeffs recipe next
James
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On Tap: FlapJack O'lantern Pumpkin Cream Ale
Fermenting: Power Sit-Up Golden Strong Ale
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Offline denny

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Re: Soft Beer Pretzel
« Reply #6 on: August 13, 2010, 02:42:52 PM »
According to Jeff, the lye is the key.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

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Offline dbeechum

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Re: Soft Beer Pretzel
« Reply #7 on: August 13, 2010, 03:06:04 PM »
Yup and thanks to Jeff's insistence I have to keep hunting around for lye online now that Red Devil doesn't sell straight lye drain cleaner anymore.
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Offline richardt

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Re: Soft Beer Pretzel
« Reply #8 on: August 13, 2010, 03:10:24 PM »
Why lye?  (sounds like a pun, but I'm being serious/curious).

Offline dbeechum

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Re: Soft Beer Pretzel
« Reply #9 on: August 13, 2010, 03:35:08 PM »
Dipping the high protein dough (the milk powder adds extra protein) causes a change in the protein and sugar structures at the surface and starts cooking them. That allows for the development of that extra chewy super brown crust.

You can do the same thing with say baking soda, but it's not as effective.
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Offline thirsty

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Re: Soft Beer Pretzel
« Reply #10 on: August 13, 2010, 04:02:24 PM »
Let us know you find the lye.

Offline dbeechum

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Re: Soft Beer Pretzel
« Reply #11 on: August 13, 2010, 04:57:06 PM »
It ain't the cheapest but damned if Amazon doesn't have like an endless supply of everything.

Microbead Lye on Amazon
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Offline abraxas

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Re: Soft Beer Pretzel
« Reply #12 on: August 13, 2010, 06:30:05 PM »
http://www.aaa-chemicals.com/sodium-hydroxide.html

I've bought from here before...a couple of lbs lasts a few years.  We make pretzels on Christmas, my mom makes me leave the container in her garage though....

Offline Pawtucket Patriot

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Re: Soft Beer Pretzel
« Reply #13 on: August 14, 2010, 07:10:13 AM »
I had some leftover beer pizza dough and decided to experiment using it to make soft pretzels.

-I equally portioned the dough and rolled out each piece into long ropes
-shaped them into pretzel form, placed them on a greased sheet pan. refrigerated for 2 hours
-preheated the oven to 450F
-boiled 1 quart of water. slowly added 1/8 C of baking soda & 2 tsp salt
-dropped pretzel into water for 15-20 seconds on each side
-place on greased baking sheet, sprinkled with Red Hawaiian sea salt
-baked for 15 minutes

a little more airy inside than the traditionally denser pretzel but tasted great


Sounds good!  I made soft pretzels last weekend and used Red Hawaiian sea salt too.  It's a nice pretzel salt.
Matt Schwandt | Minneapolis, MN
AHA Member

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Offline denny

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Re: Soft Beer Pretzel
« Reply #14 on: August 14, 2010, 09:02:14 AM »
Sounds good!  I made soft pretzels last weekend and used Red Hawaiian sea salt too.  It's a nice pretzel salt.

The red Hawaiian salt is the new hot, trendy salt.  I got some in a salt sampler for my birthday last year.  It _is_ a really good salt, though.  I think my favorite that I've run across is Cyprus flake.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

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The best, sharpest, funniest, weirdest and most knowledgable minds in home brewing contribute on the AHA forum. - Alewyfe