Auntie Annie’s/Wetzels Pretzels – Sweet or Salty
19 July 2010 § 1 Comment
My camera sucks, basically.
I love Wetzel Pretzels. The Sinful Cinnamon ones and the salted ones and even the unsalted ones. But I love mostly the Almond Crunch pretzels. SO good.
Though what I have is not a Wetzel Pretzel recipe, but an Auntie Annie’s one. I reckon I’ve tried an Auntie Annie’s pretzel once before, only don’t remember the actual taste. It could be because it wasn’t a great pretzel and the taste simply wasn’t memorable, or more likely, I just can’t recall it. I’m sure it ranks up there with Wetzel Prezels.
As I was in a rush and possibly even in a bad mood, I didn’t take as much care in baking these pretzels. I’ve made them several times before and I distinctly remember vey much enjoying them (several years ago), but now I wasn’t as tempted to eat the entire batch. Perhaps it was because they didn’t have the ideal Almond Crunch topping that I now prefer. Nevertheless, they tasted great and they would have tasted even better if I stretched the pretzels out to the proper length and mayhaps gave more atention to baking them.
Recipe from Top Secret Recipes:
Auntie Anne’s Pretzels
by Todd Wilbur
The first Auntie Anne’s pretzel store opened in 1988 in the heart of pretzel country — a Pennsylvanian Amish farmers’ market. Over 500 stores later, Auntie Anne’s is one of the most requested secret clone recipes on the Internet. Many of the recipes passed around the Web require bread flour, and some use honey as a sweetener. But, by analyzing the Auntie Anne’s home pretzel-making kit in the secret underground laboratory we can determine a better solution for recreating the delicious mall treats than any other recipe out there. For the best quality dough, all-purpose flour is what you need. And powdered sugar can be used to perfectly sweeten the stuff. Take your pick from salted pretzels, or the cinnamon/sugar coated kind, and crank the oven up real hot.
1 1/4 cups warm water
1 tablespoon plus 1/4 teaspoon yeast
3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons vegetable oil (I wonder if it would taste better if one used sweet butter instead of oil?)
4 cups warm water
1/2 cup baking soda
Cinnamon Topping –
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
Salt Topping –
1/4 cup butter, melted
kosher or pretzel salt
- Dissolve the yeast in the warm water in a small bowl or cup. Let it sit for a few minutes.
- Combine flour, powdered sugar and salt in a large mixing bowl. Add water with yeast and vegetable oil. Stir with a spoon and then use your hands to form the dough into a ball. Knead the dough for 5 minutes on a lightly floured surface. Dough will be nice and smooth when it’s ready. Place the dough into a lightly oiled bowl, cover it and, and store it in a warm place for about 45 minutes or until the dough doubles in size.
- When dough has risen, preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- Make a bath for the pretzels by combining the baking soda with the warm water and stir until baking soda is mostly dissolved.
- Remove the dough from the bowl and divide it into 8 even portions. Roll each portion on a flat non-floured surface until it is about 3 feet long. Pick up both ends of the dough and give it a little spin so the middle of the dough spins around once. Lay the dough down with the loop nearest to you. Fold the ends down toward you and pinch to attach them to the bottom of the loop. The twist should be in the middle.
- Holding the pinched ends, dip each pretzel into the bath solution. Put each pretzel on a paper towel for a moment to blot the excess liquid. Arrange the pretzels on a baking sheet sprayed with non-stick spray. If you want salt, sprinkle pretzels with kosher or pretzel salt. Don’t salt any pretzels you plan to coat with cinnamon/sugar. You will likely have to use two baking sheets, and be sure to bake them separately. Bake the pretzels for 4 minutes, then spin the pan halfway around and bake for another 4 to 5 minutes or until the pretzels are golden brown.
- Remove the pretzels from the oven, and let them cool for a couple minutes. If you want to eat some now, brush them with melted butter first, if desired, before serving. If you want the cinnamon/sugar coating make it by combining the 1/2 cup sugar and 2 teaspoons cinnamon in a small bowl. Brush the unsalted pretzels you plan to coat with a generous amount of melted butter. Sprinkle a heavy coating of the cinnamon/sugar onto the entire surface of the pretzels over a plate. Munch out. (TopSecretRecipes.com)
Yields 8 Pretzels
I’ve stumbled across a almond crunch topping that I’ve not tried yet but it seems respectable, especially with the addition of honey. I’ll use it the next time I make pretzels, unless I find something better:
Almond Crunch Topping:
1/2 lb Butter
2 Tbsp Honey
1/2 c chopped almonds
While still hot, brush with melted butter and honey. Sprinkle with white and brown
sugar (approx. half and half mixture)and chopped almonds.
*But now that I look at it, I’d probably put the almonds through a food processor until the desired size, then pix them with the sugars and honey (and probably some butter for the taste and to make them slightly less sticky, and considering taste, I’d also add a pinch of salt) and roast them slightly in the oven. I assume the sugars are going to melt and form a solid form, which would harden, so I’d put it back in the processor once it’s cooled.
Well, maybe honey isn’t the best idea as it would make it more sticky than necessary. So, what I would do is simply combine the sugars, butter, salt, and ground almonds – then roast them in the oven until golden brown, or until it looks similar to what the almond topping ought to look like.