Of course I did.
A bread that always fights me and wants to be kneaded like it requires a deep massage for some horribly knotted muscles that won’t ease up.
That would be pretzel buns (and rolls. Because I wanted size options).
Unfortunately, once I got to the stage where I was ready to start pinching the dough my daughter had a “I need mommy right NOW!!!!!” meltdown. Which lead to them becoming breakfast today. I left them on the counter with a damp cloth overnight and they are totally fine!
You will need:
*4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
*4 tablespoons melted unsalted butter
*2 teaspoons Kosher salt
*2 teaspoons active dry yeast
*2 teaspoons sugar
*1 1/4 cups warm water
*1 large egg (beaten)
*1/4 cup baking soda
*Pretzel salt. I was out so I used more Kosher salt.
To start mix the yeast, water and sugar. After it is fully mixed leave until it starts to get frothy. This should take about 5 minutes or so.
Once the yeast mixture is frothy add in the butter, flour and salt. Here I would put have put it into a mixer if I had one. I don’t so I mix as much as I can before kneading on the counter. I don’t usually find myself needing more flour as it doesn’t stick for me. There is no harm in sprinkling your hands and the surface with flour first though.
Once kneaded I plop it into a bowl sprinkled with flour (I used the same bowl) and cover for an hour in a warm area.
While waiting you can get a baking pan ready by placing parchment paper or non-stick foil down before setting aside.
After the hour has passed punch down the dough before placing on a floured flat surface. Cut evenly into 12 pieces by cutting the dough first into quarters then cutting those into thirds. If you want smaller pieces to use as rolls just cut the thirds in half again. I personally just rip them apart. I like using my hands.
Now, there are methods of making the bun by rolling first then pinching the sides in to seal the bottom. My daughter is usually RIGHT THERE (and she’s one) so I tend to just quickly roll them up. Sometimes they are not so pretty. I tend to cook just for my family who I am pretty sure don’t even look at my food before inhaling it so there’s that. I pinched these though and they look perfect! The pinching gives them a lovely look.
After pinching (or just rolling like I usually do) lay the balls pinched side down and at least 1 inch apart on the baking sheet. Cover and let them rise for at least 30 minutes. Once they are done move your rack to the middle slot and begin pre-heating the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit before moving onto the next step.
Boil 2 quarts of water in a large saucepan. Carefully add the baking soda and mix as you to to prevent clumping. Simmer. Once it is ready you can gently plop 2-3 (or more depending on the size you made) dough balls at a time in. Drop them in seam side down to begin with and leave for 30 seconds before flipping over for another 30 seconds. Mine sink then rise up!
Remove the balls using a fork to scoop underneath or with a slotted spoon and place seam down on the baking sheet. When they are all ready brush completely with the beaten egg. Once done sprinkle your salt on before taking a sharp knife to make a X across the tops of the dough balls.