Ham & Cheese Pretzel Bites

Makes about 4 dozen

 

Ingredients

1 package (1/4 oz) active dry yeast (or instant yeast)

2 tbsp. plus 1 tsp. packed brown sugar, divided

1/4 cup warm water

1 cup warm milk

2 1/2 to 3 cups flour

1 cup finely chopped ham

1/2 cup shredded cheese of choice (I used cheddar)

6 cups water

4 tsp. baking soda

4 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted

1-2 tbsp. coarse salt

 

Directions

Combine the yeast, 1 tsp. brown sugar, and warm water in a large bowl. Set aside until foamy, 5-8 minutes. (If using the instant yeast, you can skip this step and just add it to the flour.) In another bowl, stir together the remaining 2 tbsp. brown sugar and warm milk until dissolved.

 

Add 2 1/2 cups flour and milk mixture to the yeast. Stir with a wooden spoon until a soft dough forms. Add the remaining flour as needed. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and gently knead a few times, forming a smooth ball.

 

Brush the inside of a large, clean bowl with olive oil. Transfer the dough to the bowl and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Allow to rise in a warm, draft free area for about 2 hours (such as an unheated oven), until dough has doubled in size.

 

Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Divide into 4 equal pieces. Lightly dust your hands and rolling pin with flour. Roll one of the four sections into a 12×4-inch rectangle. With the long side facing you, gently press 1/4 of the ham and cheese into the bottom third of the dough, and roll as tightly as possible, starting with the end that has the filling. Cut into 12 2-inch pieces and transfer to a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Repeat with the remaining 3 portions of dough.

 

Let rest, uncovered, at room temperature for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400˚F.

 

Bring 6 cups of water to boil. Add the baking soda and reduce heat to a gentle simmer. Boil pretzels in batches, cooking about 20 seconds each, turning once. They should be slightly puffed. Use a slotted spoon to transfer them back to the baking sheets.

 

Bake until puffed and golden-brown, about 15 minutes.

 

Brush warm pretzel bites lightly with melted butter and sprinkle with salt. Serve warm or at room temperature.

 

Enjoy!

 

 

Printed from ComfortofCooking.blogspot.com