Here at Whisk + Brush, things are already beginning to roll for the Fall. Schedules are filling up, projects are getting started, and meetings are (happily) jamming up our days. While some might call it hectic, we call it heaven. After all, Betsy and I are thankful beyond measure for the growth of this little business. A full docket is merely a positive sign that our efforts are moving in the right direction.
However, as silly as it may sound, sometimes we get so harried that we forget to cook for OURSELVES. Crazy right?! We really live up to that ol’ saying, “The cobbler’s children have no shoes.” Before we jumped on a FaceTime meeting with our fave photo-vid hybrid gal Taylor Lenci, we whipped up some sustenance with these little (actually, very fat) puppies.
Alleluia, Jalapeño Pretzels!
Oh, and we paired it with a nice, buttery Chardonnay because we like to keep it classy when we stuff our faces during an appointment.
Bring ‘em to your next board meeting. We guarantee you’ll nail the presentation!
makes 4 large (or 8 small) pretzels
1 c whole milk, warm
1 Tbl dry active yeast
2 Tbl salted butter, melted
3 Tbl brown sugar
pinch of salt
2 1/4 c flour
2 cups shredded cheese
2 Tbl jalapeño, chopped
3 c hot water
1 c baking soda
Sprinkle yeast over the warm milk in a large bowl. Let it sit on the surface for 5 minutes before thoroughly mixing in. Let sit another 10 minutes until little bubbles begin to form on the surface.
In a small bowl mix together melted butter and brown sugar. Add to milk and whisk until combined. Add salt, mix.
Add flour. With a wooden spoon, mix together until just ingredients are just barely blended.
Pour out onto a floured surface and kneed until the dough forms a thoroughly mix, smooth ball. Place back in the large bowl and cover for 30-40 minute or until it has doubled in size.
Preheat oven to 450º.
While the dough rises, combine your choice of shredded cheese and chopped jalapeño pepper. We used sharp cheddar cheese and an Italian blend cheese.
On a floured surface, turn out the dough and loosely shape into a log. With a rolling pin, rollout the dough until it’s fairly narrow and thin. Place a line of the cheese mixture all the way along one side of the rolled out dough.
Carefully begin to roll up the dough into a stuffed log. If it’s not sticking add a few droplets of water where needed in order for the dough to hold its shape.
Once rolled up, massage the dough and stretch it a bit longer without tearing. Cut into 4 equal parts and pinch the ends closed.
In a medium bowl, mix together hot water and baking soda. Prepare a baking sheet lined with a Silpat or parchment paper. Dip each pretzel log in the water and then twist while on the baking sheet. Repeat for all portions.
Sprinkle with coarse sea salt and place in the oven for 8-10 minutes or until pretzels are dark brown and full baked.
NOTE: If you so desire, brush the pretzels with a mixture of melted butter and sweet paprika for a nice melty finish to the dough. On the rare occasion you have any leftovers, store in a sealable plastic bag and reheat in the oven at 350º for 10 minutes.
Eat immediately! And don't forget the wiiiiiiine.