Soft Pretzel Bites

5 c. flour

2 T. brown sugar

2-1/4 tsp. active dry yeast (or 1 pkg)

2-1/2 tsp. salt

1-1/2 c. warm water

6 T. butter, melted

3 quarts water

3/4 c. baking soda

1 egg, beaten with 1 T. cold water

Coarse salt

In large mixing bowl, fitted with dough hook, whisk together sugar, yeast, salt and flour. With mixer on low speed, slowly add water and butter. When combined, increase speed to medium and continue mixing until the dough forms a cohesive blob and starts pulling away from the bowl and looks smooth, about 4 minutes. If the dough still looks too wet, add flour, a tablespoon at a time. Dump dough onto floured surface and knead into a ball. 

Spray mixing bowl with nonstick cooking spray and place dough ball in bowl. Cover with damp cloth and place in warm area for about an hour or until double in size. 

Preheat oven to 475. Line baking sheet with parchment paper or coat with nonstick cooking spray; set aside. 

Heat water in large pot or roasting pan on stove. When boiling, slowly add baking soda. 

Remove dough from bowl and divide into eight equal pieces. Roll each piece into a long rope, about 22 inches long and cut into 1 inch pieces. Boil dough in baking soda water in batches, about 15 pieces at a time, for 30-45 seconds. Remove with large slotted spoon and place on baking sheet being careful not to let any pieces touch. Brush top of pieces with egg mixture and sprinkle with coarse salt. Bake in oven for 12-15 minutes. 

Source: Adapted from Two Peas and Their Pod