Pretzel Fingers for #LetsLunch and Halloween
Scary food? Nope, NOT AT ALL my thing! Well…not when I started my research anyway. Now I am right into it and have spent hours sifting through the copious amount of information on the web to find me a SCARY recipe for #LetsLunch and for the upcoming Halloween goings-on.
I could have made skeleton cookies, spider’s web cupcakes or chocolate spiders but I am in the mood for real food this month, not sweets. Something bread-y or biscuity or savoury. And gross-looking fingers with red nails seem to be a common theme for Halloween…so I am thinking breadsticks…baguettes…pretzels! But I don’t want my pretzels to look so scary and gross that no-one wants to eat them so I have come up with a compromise. I think Pretzel Fingers with Almond Nails should do the trick!
First, I need a soft pretzel recipe. Easy! An Australian recipe website gives me exactly what I need: allrecipes.com.au has a ‘German-Style’ pretzel.
German-Style Soft Pretzel
By October 12, 2012Published:
- Yield: 16 medium pretzels (16 Servings)
- Prep: 1 hr 30 mins
- Cook: 10 mins
- Ready In: 1 hr 40 mins
These are big, soft pretzels rolled in coarse sea salt that you can make at home with basic bread ingredients you probably already have! Recipe from allrecipes.com.au with a couple of minor changes.
- 7 g (1/4 oz) dried yeast
- 1 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups warm water
- 1 1/4 cups bread flour
- 3 1/4 cups plain flour
- 2 cups warm water
- 1 1/2 tablespoons bicarbonate of soda
- 50 g melted butter
- sea salt
- In a large mixing bowl, dissolve the yeast and brown sugar in 375ml warm water.
- Stir in flour and salt, and knead dough on a floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 8 minutes. (I did it with the dough hook of the Kitchen Aid)
- Place in a greased bowl, and turn to coat the surface. Cover, and let rise for one hour.
- The dough will at least double in size.
- After dough has risen, cut into 16 pieces.
- Combine 2 cups warm water and bicarb soda in a bowl.
- Roll each piece into a rope, pencil thin. Cut into 'fingers' or leave whole and twist into a pretzel shape, and dip into the bicarb soda solution.
- If you are making 'fingers', place an almond at the thinner end for the 'nail'.
- Place on baking paper covered baking trays, and let rise 15 to 20 minutes.
- Bake at 230 C (450 F) for 8 to 10 minutes, or until golden brown. Brush with melted butter, and sprinkle with coarse salt.
- ROLLING A TRADITIONAL PRETZEL, STEP 1: Make a loop.
- STEP 2: Twist the loop to create a vertical infinity sign.
- STEP 3: Twist the loop once again.
- STEP 4: Bring the ends of the rope up to meet the top of the circle, keeping them apart.
- Bake the pretzels 10-15 minutes....
- ...until golden brown.
- And then I just had more fun with the fingers...(watch out for that sharp knife...)
Just by the way, I do love a good, salty, soft, glazed and golden pretzel. If anyone has ever been to Zurich train station and eaten a hot pretzel with cheese, they will know exactly what I am talking about. I can still remember the taste, and I am going back to 1986!
While I was playing with pretzel dough, thought I should also bake some real pretzels. But how on earth to roll them? I tried Auntie Anne’s YouTube video first. It started off with such clear step by step instuctions until the most crucial part which I just could not follow. So next I tried Wikihow which gave me a better idea of how to do it, although I don’t think my pretzels are exactly as they should be. But for a first go (if I may say so myself) they looked pretty nice…
Let’s Lunch (#LetsLunch) is a twitter-based virtual lunch club where anyone interested can join this monthly ‘lunch date’. The group was started by NewYorker Cheryl Tan, author of ‘A Tiger in the Kitchen’ , a food memoir of her Singaporean heritage. A topic is posted at the beginning of the month, often by consensus, and all posts are made on the same day by this random but lovely group of food bloggers, writers and people who just love cooking from all around the world.
Anyone can join at any time – just join us on twitter by searching and adding the hashtag #LetsLunch. Check back in a couple of daysfor a list of everyone’s #letslunch post.
And maybe join in next month?
And for other scary stories and recipes from #LetsLunch on Twitter:
Linda’a Spiced Pumpkin Flan at Spicebox travels
Lucy’s fabulously spooky Halloween cakes at A Cook and Her Books
Annabelle’s Halloween Spice Cookies at A Glass of Fancy
Cathy’s Cowboy Black Bean Dip at ShowFood Chef
Rashda’s Spooktacular Stuffed Pumpkin at Hot Curries & Cold Beer
Joe’s Sloppy Vegan Joe with Mock Meat at Joe Yonan
Lisa’s Pretzel fingers at Monday Morning Cooking Club