If you have been following this blog for a while now, it would be quite obvious that I lean towards dishes that are easy and quick to prepare. It wasn’t always that way, however, particularly in the now quite distant “BK (Before Kids) Era” when I most certainly had more time on my hands.
Not that I realised it at the time.
But every now and then I get an itch to try something new in the kitchen. Be it a dish I haven’t made before, or to use an ingredient that I haven’t yet tried. When we decided on a German theme for our (not so) recent Fathers Day Linner, memories of walking the streets of Munich with a soft pretzel in hand came flooding back. Another BK Era experience, but one I knew I had to re-create (the pretzel part, at least ) even knowing that it would require a good amount of time.
I found this recipe – which was perfect inspiration and just what I was hoping to create. I started by making a dough, and after leaving it to prove for an hour, divided the dough into 8 portions. Each portion was then rolled into a log, and twisted into the all too familiar pretzel shape.
After resting for another 30 minutes, I simmered the pretzels in water / brown sugar / bicarb soda, until they had started to puff.
After a quick drain, it was time to bake! Before popping the pretzels into the oven, I brushed the tops with a little egg wash and sprinkle with sea salt flakes. After 12 minutes in a hot oven, they had turned a gorgeous golden brown.
As for the roasted garlic and mustard butter, well this was definitely the simplest part. I roasted the unpeeled garlic cloves (drizzled with a little oil and enclosed in foil for 20 minutes. Then, when cool enough to handle, I squeezed the garlic from the skin, and added it to softened butter with a good amount of seeded mustard.
When it was time to serve, it was just a matter of plating the pretzels with a bowl of the butter alongside for our family to help themselves. I was thrilled with the finished product – the pretzels were light and fluffy, and worked beautifully with the garlic mustard butter. They were a nice alternative to the usual bread or bread roll side (and not to mention a fantastic trip down memory lane!)
You can find the recipe here.
Stay tuned over the coming weeks for some of the other German-inspired dishes we served!