Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Chocolate chip brioche pretzels

These light and buttery pretzels are perfect for breakfast or a snack. They are made with a brioche dough and contain lots of chocolate to start your day right!

Over the holiday break, my husband mentioned that he wanted to go check out a local bakery. They were supposed to have amazing pastries and other delectable delights. Unfortunately for us, they were closed.

So I did the next best thing. I baked some chocolate chip brioche pretzels instead.

These pretzels start off with a buttery brioche dough and then are formed into pretzels for a fun and easy-to-hold shape. I added chocolate chips to the dough because, well, chocolate chips. And although these came out steaming hot from the oven, both my husband and Addie managed to scarf one down about one minute. The heat didn't even bother them.

If your brioche dough didn't rise like mine did, you can either set them inside your oven with just the light on. Or, you can zap the dough in the microwave for 20 seconds and let it rest. My method? I put mine on the stove after I had made lunch, and the residual heat warmed up the dough enough to double it.

Lesson? When the bakery closes, make your own treats.

Chocolate chip brioche pretzels
Dough
  • 1/3 cup milk of choice
  • 1 teaspoon instant yeast
  • 2 and 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 8 Tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup chocolate, chopped (or can use chocolate chips like I did)
  • Coarse sugar, for topping (optional)
Glaze
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon water
Directions 
Make the dough: In a small bowl, heat the milk in the microwave for about 30 seconds. Add the yeast and allow to sit for about 2 minutes.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment on low speed, whisk the flour, sugar, and salt together. Add the eggs and the yeast mixture until the dough is a bit shaggy. Then turn the mixer to medium speed and add the butter. Continue kneading for about 5 minutes until the dough is smooth and not sticky. You may need to add more flour if your dough is sticking.

Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl and cover. Allow the dough to rest for about 2 hours or until almost doubled.

Form the pretzels: After the dough has rise, punch it down slightly and divide into 8 equal pieces. Roll each piece into an 18" long rope. Form the pretzel by making a U shape. Then twist the top ends together one full rotation and fold it down towards the bend of the U. Press the ends down into the dough. Repeat with other pieces.

Transfer the pretzels to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone mat.

Make the glaze: Mix all ingredients together. Brush the tops of the pretzels with the glaze and allow it to rest for another 15 minutes or until the dough gets slightly puffy. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees . Brush the pretzels once more with the glaze and top with coarse sugar if desired. Bake the pretzels for about 12 minutes or until slightly puffy and golden. Cool completely before serving.

Pretzels should be stored at room temperature in an airtight container and will keep for a few days. These are best the day they are made.

Yield: 8 pretzels

Source: The smitten kitchen cookbook


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