Experiment #5 – Pretzel

5:00 pm – Measured all the ingredients. Room at 22°C.

5:05 pm – Mixed the yeast with 100 ml of water until dissolved. Let it rest for 5 minutes. In the meantime, mixed the salt and the flour. Sifted the salt and flour mix into a separate bowl and made a well in the middle.

5:10 pm – Poured the yeast mixture into the well and started incorporating the flour with a wooden spoon. Added the remaining water and mixed everything until it made a rough dough. Rolled the dough out into a lightly floured surface and kneaded it for 10 minutes.

5:25 pm – Rolled the stiff sticky dough into a ball and put it in a slightly oiled glass bowl and sprinkled a few drops of water on top of it. Covered it with a kitchen towel and let it rise for about 90 minutes close to a heater at 26°C.

7:00 pm – Punched down the dough as it was twice the original size and let it rest for 10 minutes.

7:10 pm – Dough was significantly dry. Didn’t need flour on the work surface. I put the dough on the surface and cut it into 8 equal-ish pieces (should have weighed them, but didn’t). With each piece, made a ball, rolled out into an oval and started elongating. The desired length was 40cm, but not all achieved that length. The first ones were very dry and not creating enough friction with the work surface, so I brought a small bowl with water and would wet my hands before starting working on the next dough. Put the dough to rest for 45 minutes, while pre heating the oven at 220°C.

Progression of my pretzel knots: Right to left, top row then bottom row.

8:20 pm – Glazed the pretzels with an egg wash and put them in the oven for 15-20 minutes.

8:40 pm – Removed pretzels from oven and put them on a wire rack.

Note: the pretzel knots baked way too thick and not very much in shape. I will need to practice tying the pretzel knot and perfecting the dough constancy.

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