Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Buffalo Chicken Roll Ups


I love Buffalo Chicken, Frank's Red Hot sauce and also blue cheese, so this recipe really called out to me.  I was quite impressed.  And it was SO EASY! ~Shelly


4-6 chicken tenders
salt and pepper
1/4 cup blue cheese crumbles
1/4 cup frank's red hot
2 Tbsp mayo
1 cup crush cornflakes (you could also use gluten free corn chex)

***********************************

Stir together mayo and Frank's Red Hot.
Crush cornflakes.
Flatten chicken with meat hammer.
Season chicken with salt and pepper.
Spoon blue cheese on chicken tender.
Roll up the chicken and close with a toothpick.
Dip chicken rolls in Frank's Red Hot mixture
then roll in Cornflake crumbs.
Set in a baking pan and bake on 400 for 30 minutes.


Serve with extra hot sauce!

Monday, December 18, 2017

Ruth’s Chris Sweet Potato Casserole

Let Harter House Supermarkets help you with everything you need for a wonderful Holiday Meal.


If you have ever been to Ruth's Chris Steakhouse, you may have experienced their signature Sweet Potato Casserole. It is awesome. When you want something really special and maybe to impress your guests at Thanksgiving, this is the recipe!

Serves 4
CRUST MIXTURE
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup flour
3/4 cup chopped nuts (pecans preferred)
1/4 cup melted butter

SWEET POTATO MIXTURE
2 cups mashed sweet potatoes
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 eggs -- well beaten
¼ cup melted butter

Combine brown sugar, flour, nuts and butter in mixing bowl. Set aside.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Combine sweet potatoes, sugar, salt, vanilla, eggs and butter in a mixing bowl
in the order listed. Mix thoroughly.
Pour sweet potato mixture into buttered baking dish.
Sprinkle the surface of the sweet potato mixture evenly with the crust mixture.
Bake for 30 minutes. Allow to set at least 30 minutes before serving.


Of course, my very good friends Maureen Hays, offered this alternative recipe for a healthier choice!

Sweet Potato Soufflé
5-6 Sweet Potatoes baked & peeled
1 stick butter
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 Cup shredded Coconut (Raw & unsweetened)

Whip all the ingredients above on high and place in a buttered baking dish.
TOPPING:
2 Tbls Maple Syrup or Molasses
1½ Cup pecans chopped
½ stick of butter

Combine above and pour over top of sweet potatoes.
Bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 45 minutes.
Tastes like a dessert and a favorite for just anytime.





Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Brown Sugar Peanut Brittle

Ingredients:
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup firmly-packed light brown sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
1/2 cup water
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup butter or margarine
2 to 3 cups shelled raw peanuts
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda




Preparation: Butter a baking pan or cookie sheet (with sides) ; set aside.
In a large heavy sauce pan (at least 3-quart size), combine granulated sugar, brown sugar, corn syrup, water and salt.
Cook over medium high heat until all the sugar is dissolved.
Continue to cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture comes just to a full boil.
Stir in the butter.
Continue to cook, without stirring, until a candy thermometer reaches 230 degrees F. Once it has reached this temperature a thread should form when the spoon is dipped into the mixture and lifted up.
Cook and stir until you reach 280 degrees F, or the soft crack stage.
(If you don’t have a candy thermometer, place a small drop of the mixture into a bowl with room temperature water, the mixture should be make a firm ball that is slightly crunchy).

When you have reached 290 degrees F, add the peanuts (all at once) and stir in.
Continue to stir constantly until you reach 300 degrees F, or the hard crack stage (a small amount of the mixture will make a hard ball when dropped into the water).

I was taught to keep on stirring until you hear the peanuts begin to “pop”, and then remove the pot from the heat.
Stir in the baking soda, and mix well. It is going to “foam” up, which is what gives you light, airy brittle. Stir it well, but don’t stir it all the way flat, unless you really want flat hard crunchy brittle.
Pour the candy onto a buttered cookie sheet. Tilt, shake and “shimmy” the candy until is has spread out as far as possible on the pan.

Allow to cool until it is room temperature, then lift the pan up and drop it onto the table (at least that is how I do it, you can crack it into pieces with the back of a heavy knife, or even with your hands if you wish.)

You now have about 2 pounds of wonderful, crunchy peanut brittle! So enjoy!

Monday, December 11, 2017

Foolproof Prime Rib



The Holidays call for something special and a Prime Rib Roast from Harter House is always special.  Harter House will season your prime rib for FREE with Pappy's, Santa Maria, or Jerry's Prime Rib Rub.

For the longest time I could not get my Prime Rib to be as good as I could get at a nice restaurant. I was constantly trying new recipes, never quite getting it perfect or at the very least, my results were never consistent. Then I tried this recipe and thought it was the best roast I had ever made and I got rave reviews. Both of these recipes are similar. The first recipe does not actually say how long to leave the roast sit in the oven before you turn the oven back on, but 2 hours was what I tried and it worked great.


Foolproof Prime Rib

This method for Prime Rib Roast is browned on the outside and rare on the inside – regardless of size!

Allow your Prime Rib Roast to stand at room temperature for at least an hour. If your Prime Rib is frozen, thaw completely and bring to room temperature.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Rub the roast with spices - Salt, Pepper, Garlic– (See rub recipe below or I like our NEW Jerry's All Purpose Rub  OR I've used Montreal Steak Seasoning also)
Then place Prime Rib Roast on a rack in a pan – Rib Side Down, fatty side up.

Roast for 1 hour. Turn oven off. Leave roast in oven but
DO NOT OPEN OVEN DOOR.
Allow to sit in oven at least 2 hours.
Thirty to forty minutes before serving time, turn your oven on to 375 degrees and reheat Prime Rib.

(This recipe does not say allow to rest – but I would definitely allow time for the roast to rest before slicing)

IMPORTANT: DO NOT REMOVE ROAST OR OPEN OVEN DOOR FROM TIME THE ROAST IS PUT IN AND UNTIL YOU ARE READY TO SERVE.

**********************************************************

Another method says;
Let stand for an hour at room temperature.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Rub dry herb mixture all over and into Rib Roast.
Place roast on a wire rack inside a roaster pan, and with the ribs down. Put the roast in the oven and roast uncovered for 1 hour. After the 1 hour turn off the oven without opening it. In 4 hours, turn on the oven to 370 degrees and roast 30 minute more for a medium rare.
Remove roast and let rest for 30 minutes before slicing.

********************************************************* 

Spice Rub:
2 TBL Onion Powder, 2 TBL Died Rosemary, 2 TBL Black Pepper, 1 TBL Garlic Powder, ¼ Cup Paprika, ¼ Kosher Salt.

I use an Au Jus Gravy mix and add dripping from my roast pan for the gravy.


If guests do not want any pink in their meat, let their prime rib slice sit in the gravy for a short time and all the red will be gone and the meat is supper tender and juicy.


Be sure to pickup a creamy Horseradish Sauce
to serve with your Prime Rib Roast.


Monday, December 4, 2017

Parmesan Ranch Baked Chicken


I LOVE simple.  This is pretty simple.  ~Shelly

Tender, juicy chicken is topped with Ranch dressing, buttery crackers, and savory Parmesan cheese. This is a baked chicken dish your entire family will be begging for!
A subtle Ranch flavor takes a backseat, letting the Parmesan be the star.

Ingredients
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 2 pounds)
  • 1 cup crushed Ritz crackers (about 24 crackers)
  • 4 ounces Parmesan Cheese, shredded
  • 1 tablespoons dried parsley flakes
  • 2 tablespoons Ranch Dressing
  • 2 teaspoons garlic salt



Instructions
  1. In a seal-able plastic bag, gently pound chicken until it's uniform in thickness. Slice breasts in half, if desired.
  2. In a food processor, pulse together crackers, shredded Parmesan and dried parsley. (alternatively, you could crush the crackers by hand and stir together with the cheese and parsley.
  3. Spray a 9"x13" pan with cooking spray to prevent sticking. Place chicken in the pan and sprinkle with garlic salt.
  4. Brush chicken evenly with Ranch dressing, then sprinkle cracker mixture on top. Press the cracker mixture into the chicken lightly with your hands.
  5. Bake in a preheated 400 degree oven for about 20 minutes. Tops should be golden brown. If additional browning time is needed, place chicken under the broiler for a couple minutes.
  6. Serve hot.

Serves 6

This recipe found on Yellow Bliss Road

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Lemon Pepper Chicken


INGREDIENTS
1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1 tbsp. lemon pepper seasoning
1 tsp. kosher salt
2 lemons, divided
1 lb. Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts
2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 c. low-sodium chicken broth
2 tbsp. butter
2 cloves garlic
Chopped parsley, for garnish

DIRECTIONS

Preheat oven to 400°.

In a medium bowl, combine flour, lemon pepper, salt, and zest of one lemon.
Toss halved chicken breasts in the flour mixture until fully coated.
Slice 1 lemon into thin rounds.

In a large skillet over medium high heat, heat olive oil.
 Add the chicken in a single layer and cook until golden on the bottom, about 5 minutes.
Flip chicken breasts.

To the same skillet, add the chicken broth, butter,
garlic and lemon slices and transfer skillet to the oven.
Bake until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 170° F
and the sauce has reduced slightly, 10 to 15 minutes.
Spoon sauce on top of chicken. Garnish with parsley.

Photos by Ethan Calabrese


Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Classic Yeast Rolls Recipe


I absolutely LOVE yeast rolls.
This classic yeast rolls recipe really hits the spot. Find everything you need to make these delicious rolls at Harter House and Harter House World Flavors.



This recipe is adapted originally from the Farm Journal's Homemade Bread book (copyright 1969!). This is a very good, reliable recipe and really didn’t need much tweaking.

While these are totally delicious, another version can be stuffed with ground beef, pepperoni and cheddar cheese.  I understand, It is mind-blowing.  


Technique-wise, this recipe is really pretty easy.  It's been adapted from a hand-mixed version to a stand mixer version thus making it even more easy to have delicious homemade yeast rolls.  Over 2/3 of the three hours listed as prep time below is inactive time – time that the yeast spends rising.  So while this does take some time from start to finish, it leaves plenty of time for doing things in between like relaxing… or cleaning the bathroom.  Ha.

Since this is a yeast roll recipe, the yeast is a very important component. The yeast is bloomed very simply in warm water. As you can see below in the course of five minutes, the yeast is fed by the water and starts to get bubbly and activated. This reaction is the yeast coming back to life, ready to work on rising the bread dough it’s about to go into.


Something else I like about this recipe is that it uses all purpose flour. No need for bread flour. Which is good because this roll remains a little more tender than breads with bread flour. I also use shortening in this recipe, staying true to the old-school 1960′s bread-making style. If you don’t wish to use shortening, you can use butter instead.

As I said before, this recipe takes a while because the yeast needs to rise twice, for a total of about two hours and fifteen minutes. Below you can see the bread after the first rise and how it looks after it’s been kneaded (step #9 in the recipe). Like many roll recipes, this one calls for the bread to be portioned into rolls before it goes into it’s second proof (yeast rising).



I’m a big fan of butter on bread so I like to butter these rolls both before they go into the oven and after they come out of the oven. The application of melted butter prior to baking helps the roll produce a brown and crisp crust on the outside.  The buttering after baking gives the roll a long-lasting soft, tender crumb.



While this bread can be used as a savory dish accompaniment, my favorite way to have it is slathered with yet more butter on the inside and topped with some homemade marmalade. If you don’t have any on hand, fear not – these rolls taste great with just about any type of jam you can find. If you’re keeping these more than one day, simply pop them into the fridge in an air-tight container and reheat in the microwave for 45 seconds while covered with a damp paper towel. The butter on the outside helps to keep the bread soft and moist, and the rolls actually taste very good reheated that way.


Now that you’re pining for some fresh baked bread, on to the recipe!
Yield: 12 rolls

Classic Yeast Rolls Recipe  This classic yeast rolls recipe produces tender, tasty rolls. These are versatile enough to serve alongside dinner or to eat alone with butter and jam for a light breakfast. Enjoy!

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons shortening
  • 1-3/4 ounce package of yeast
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tablespoons melted salted butter

Method:

  1. Combine milk, sugar, kosher salt and shortening in a small sauce pan and just barely heat, until shortening melts. Set aside for the moment.
  2. Sprinkle yeast on the warm water and stir. Allow to sit for 5 minutes so yeast can bloom.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the milk mixture and one cup of flour. With the paddle attachment, stir on medium for one minute. Add the yeast/water and egg and stir again on medium until just smooth.
  4. Continue with the paddle attachment on medium speed and add two cups of flour. Mix well and then switch to the dough hook.
  5. Using the dough hook, add two more cups of flour and mix until dough is smooth. It will still be rather sticky.
  6. Turn the dough out onto a clean surface and manually knead in the last half cup of flour. The dough will still be a little sticky but will be workable with your hands. Add more flour if you feel dough is still too sticky. It shouldn't stick to your hands when you're kneading.
  7. Spray a bowl with nonstick spray and place dough in bowl. Flip dough once and cover the bowl with plastic wrap.
  8. Allow to rise in a warm place until doubled, about an hour and a half.
  9. Turn out on a lightly floured surface and toss to coat with flour. Knead about 15 strokes until bread is smooth.
  10. Shape into 2" balls and place evenly spaced apart in a greased pan.
  11. Brush with melted butter then cover again and let rise another 45 minutes.
  12. About 15 minutes before the rolls are ready to go into the oven, preheat to 375 ºF.
  13. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until golden brown. Run a cold stick of butter over the rolls to coat with butter after coming out of the oven.
  14. Turn rolls out onto wire rack and serve hot.


Store leftover rolls in the fridge in an air tight container. Reheat rolls in microwave for 45 seconds covered with a damp paper towel.
Prep: 3 hours  Cook: 30 minutes
Total:
3 hours, 30 minutes

Monday, November 6, 2017

Monte Cristo Sandwich



"This Sandwich is dipped in a thick, creamy batter and pan-griddled in butter. And then there's powdered sugar dusted on top. Typically, a sugary-sweet berry sauce is served on the side or poured on top, but I put Thanksgiving's leftover cranberry sauce on the inside to make this the most decadent thing since deep fried twinkies."      Nikki@NikSnacks
 

 













Monte Cristo Sandwich 
Serves 1

2 slices sandwich bread
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
2 slices Gruyere or Provolone cheese
2 slices leftover ham and/or turkey
1 Tbsp prepared cranberry sauce
1 egg 
2 Tablespoons flour 
2 Tablespoons milk or cream 
1 Tablespoon butter
Powdered sugar, for dusting

Spread 1 slice of bread with the Dijon mustard. Then layer on 1 slice of cheese followed by both slices of ham or turkey and the last piece of cheese. Spread the cranberry sauce on the other piece of bread, then press it, spread side down, on top of the cheese to create the sandwich. Place a skillet over medium-high heat. As the skillet heats, whisk the egg, flour and milk in a shallow bowl until blended.


Put the butter in the center of the pan. As it starts to melt, hold the sandwich together firmly and briefly submerge one surface in the egg batter then twist and submerge the other surface. Immediately place the sandwich in the pan, before the butter browns. Grill the sandwich on the first side for about 3 to 5 minutes, until golden brown. Then flip it with a spatula and grill it on the second side for another 3 to 5 minutes. Using a spatula, transfer the sandwich from the pan to a plate or cutting board, slice it in half and dust with powdered sugar and serve.


See more at 
http://www.niksnacksonline.com/
 
  



Bacon Wrapped Meat Loaf



 Do you have a favorite meatloaf recipe?

Growing up, my mom made meatloaf and sour cabbage.  I did NOT like it as a child.  Of course I do now.  But it was the only meatloaf I remember being introduced to when I was young.

So, when my mother-in-law served us meatloaf for dinner, it was instantly my favorite meatloaf.  My kids still ask for me, or Grandma, to make it for them.

I also published it in the first edition of the Harter House Cookbook,
Recipe by Barbara Kauffman.



This recipe makes two loafs.  Tomorrow I'll enjoy a meatloaf sandwich

2 lbs. Harter House lean Ground Chuck
1 Cup Shredded Cheddar Cheese
2/3 Cup onion, chopped
1/4 cup Ketchup
2 Tbl. Parmesan Cheese
2 Tbl. Worchestershire
1 tsp. salt
1.4 tsp pepper
2 eggs
12 strips Harter House Double Smoked Bacon

Combine all ingredients except bacon.
Mix well.
Divide mixture in half.
Shape each in a roll.
Wrap in Bacon.
Bake at 375 degrees for 40 minutes.
Do Not overcook. 
Allow to rest before slicing.



Monday, October 30, 2017

Chicken Parmigiana


Tender pieces of chicken, topped with homemade tomato sauce and grated cheese, and then oven baked until the cheese is golden and melted. The tomato sauce and crumbed, uncooked chicken can be prepared in advance but it is best to cook the chicken and assemble the dish just before it goes into the oven.

Tomato Sauce
Makes about 1 1/3 cups.

1 tablespoon oil
1/2 medium onion, peeled and finely chopped
2 large garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
1 can crushed/diced tomatoes
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1 1/2 teaspoons brown sugar, firmly packed
Salt and pepper


Crumbed Chicken
Approximately 1 lb skinless chicken breast fillets or tenderloins
2 eggs
1 tablespoon milk
1/3 cup plain flour
about 1 1/3 cups packaged breadcrumbs
about 1/2 cup oil, for frying


Cheese Topping
1 1/3 cups, firmly packed grated mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup, lightly packed grated cheddar cheese
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

Heat oil in a heavy-based medium saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes, until onion has softened but not browned. Add tomatoes, basil and brown sugar, increase heat and bring to the boil. Once boiling, reduce heat and simmer for about 35-40 minutes, stirring occasionally, until sauce has reached the desired consistency. Add salt and pepper to taste. Set aside for 10 minutes, and then puree sauce in a blender or food processor.

If using chicken breasts, cut them in half horizontally. Cover chicken with a freezer bag and lightly pound with the flat side of meat mallet to flatten. © 


Whisk eggs and milk together in a bowl. Coat one piece of chicken in flour and shake to remove excess. Then dip the chicken into the egg and milk mixture ensuring that all of the flour is moistened.


Then coat the chicken in breadcrumbs, pressing firmly to ensure crumbs adhere. Repeat with remaining pieces of chicken.

To fry chicken, heat some of the oil in a heavy-based frying pan over medium-high heat. We cook the chicken in two batches using 1/4 cup of oil for each batch (the number of batches will be determined by the size of your frying pan and you'll need to divide the oil evenly between each batch). Fry the chicken in a single layer, without overcrowding the pan, until golden brown and cooked through.

Wipe the pan out with paper towels between each batch of chicken to remove any crumbs. This prevents the overcooked loose crumbs adhering to the next batch of chicken.

Drain cooked chicken on paper towels.

Place cooked chicken in a large baking dish and spread with sauce. Sprinkle with combined cheeses.


Bake at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for about 15-20 minutes, or until cheese is melted and golden.  Optional. sprinkle the chicken parmigiana with chopped parsley before serving.


Pulled Pork in the Crock Pot





(1) 6-7 pound pork shoulder roast or Boston Butt from Harter House
Dry Rub
3-4 drops Liquid Smoke (optional)


My favorite Dry Rub
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Add all ingredients to a small bowl and stir until combined.

Rinse roast with cold water then pat dry with paper towels.  Using your hands, rub roast with Dry Rub until evenly coated.

Cover rubbed roast with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight if possible.  It’s not a deal-breaker if you can’t but it’s SO much better if it can soak up the flavors of the rub overnight.

Remove the plastic and place the roast, fat-side down, in a large crock pot.  Cover and cook on high for 4 hours.  Do not add water.

Add Liquid Smoke to the broth that has been created from cooking the roast (not directly onto the roast).  Reduce heat to low and continue cooking for 4 more hours.

Remove broth from crock pot to use for gravy or freeze for later use.  Turn crock pot off and let roast rest, covered, for 30-45 minutes.

Remove roast from crock pot.  The meat will “pull” away easily.  Toss or serve with BBQ sauce if desired.

Enjoy!


Monday, October 16, 2017

Homemade Baked and Buttery Soft Pretzels

Do you love Auntie Anne's Pretzels? 


I have not tried this recipe yet, but I'm excited to try this!
Doesn't it look delicious?   ~Shelly




Braided and baked soft pretzels.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups of all purpose flour plus a little more for dusting 
  • 1/4 cup of sugar 
  • 2 teaspoons of salt
  • 1.25 cups of warm water
  • 1 teaspoon of sugar 
  • 4 teaspoons of active, dry, baker’s yeast 
  • 1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon of melted butter or vegetable oil for the dough
  • 2 tablespoons of melted butter for brushing after baking
  • 4 cups of hot water
  • 1/2 cup of baking soda
  • Pretzel, kosher, or coarse sea salt for salting the pretzels

Equipment

  • Small bowl
  • Large mixing bowl
  • 1 or 2 baking sheets
  • Aluminum foil
  • Large pot
  • Slotted spoon
  • Rubber spatula
  • Cup, tablespoon, and teaspoon measurements
  • Pastry / basting brush
  • Large flat surface
  • Knife

Directions

  1. Combine the 3 cups of flour, 2 teaspoons of salt, and 1/4 cup of sugar in a large mixing bowl. Mix the dry ingredients well using a fork. man-fuel-food-blog-homemade-soft-pretzels-recipe-dry-ingredients
  2. In a small bowl, mix the 1.25 cups of warm water with a teaspoon of sugar and the 4 teaspoons of yeast. Mix well until dissolved and let the mixture sit for about 10 minutes until it gets a little frothy. It may even smell a little bit like beer, which is good because yeast is one of the ingredients that gives beer a lot of its distinctive flavor and aroma. man-fuel-food-blog-homemade-soft-pretzels-recipe-yeast
  3. After 10 minutes, melt a tablespoon of butter in the microwave (or use vegetable oil) and add it to the flour mixture along with the yeast liquid. man-fuel-food-blog-homemade-soft-pretzels-recipe-flour-and-yeast
  4. Mix the ingredients well starting with a rubber spatula. When the dough starts to form into a uniform paste, you can use your hands to knead the dough for 6 to 8 minutes until all of the ingredients are well incorporated and you can shape the dough into a ball. Don’t overdo it with the kneading though. The idea is just to get everything well mixed. man-fuel-food-blog-soft-pretzels-recipe-dough-ball
  5. Next, use a teaspoon of vegetable oil to grease the outside of the entire dough ball to keep it from sticking to the bowl as it rises.
  6. Cover the dough with plastic wrap or a towel and let it rise for 1 hour at room temperature (don’t refrigerate!). man-fuel-food-blog-soft-pretzels-recipe-covered-dough
  7. After an hour, the dough will have risen noticeably and be very soft to the touch. You’ll also start to smell that wonderful yeast and dough combination that is a precursor to baked breads. man-fuel-food-blog-homemade-pretzels-recipe-risen-dough
  8. At this point, start to pre-heat your oven to 450 degrees F.
  9. Dust a flat, clean surface like a counter-top with some flour and carefully get the dough ball out of the bowl and onto the counter. Dust the top of the dough with a little more flour to help keep it from sticking. man-fuel-food-blog-homemade-soft-pretzels-recipe-risen-dough
  10. Dust your hands with flour and cut the dough in half. Start stretching and forming half the dough into an elongated rectangle that you can then cut into 6 equal pieces. When you have a nice stretched rectangle, cut the dough into six pieces and repeat this process for the other half of the dough. You should end up with 12, evenly sized pieces of dough. man-fuel-food-blog-homemade-soft-pretzels-recipe-dividing-dough
  11. Now it’s time to create some fun shapes! Roll out a piece of dough into a long, thin cord. The length is really up to you depending on what kind of shapes you want to make. The typical bowed pretzel shape is always fun and you’ll need a decently long cord for that. I found that the usual pretzel shape is great, but I also really liked just rolling out a cord of dough and tying it in a single knot (like the first knot in a square or granny knot for anyone that knows their knots). I don’t recommend the long twisty style you might see in my pictures. Those looked fun, but didn’t give the best results. man-fuel-food-blog-soft-pretzels-recipe-braiding-pretzels
  12. Repeat this process for all of the pieces of dough. Mix and match the shapes as you like! man-fuel-food-blog-soft-pretzels-recipe-braided-pretzels
  13. When done with the braiding, get 4 cups of hot water and 1/2 a cup of baking soda ready to use. If your hot tap water isn’t clean or isn’t hot enough just heat some cold water and let it cool slightly so that it is hot, but not boiling. Some light steam is ok. Then add in the baking soda and mix until well dissolved. This step is especially important because this alkaline mixture of baking soda and water is what will help to give the pretzels that deep brown color on the outside as well as that nice outer texture that is so characteristic of soft pretzels. It works because the alkaline mixture speeds up the browning process as the pretzels cook.  man-fuel-food-blog-soft-pretzels-recipe-baking-soda-and-water
  14. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil (2 baking sheets if your pretzels won’t all fit on one sheet). Keep in mind that the pretzels will expand a bit as they bake. Also make sure to grease the foil very well using butter or vegetable oil. This will help to keep the pretzels from sticking when they bake.
  15. Using a slotted spatula or large slotted spoon, carefully scoop up a pretzel and place it into the hot baking soda mixture. Let it sit for 15 seconds or so as you splash some of the water over the top using the spatula or spoon. Then take it out of the water, let it drain a bit, and place it on the baking sheet. Repeat this process for all of the pretzels. man-fuel-food-blog-soft-pretzels-recipe-blanched-dough-in-baking-soda
  16. Sprinkle the pretzels with pretzel salt, kosher salt, or coarse sea salt. Don’t go overboard with the salt, but just make sure to lightly cover the tops.
  17. Slide the baking sheet(s) into the oven and make the pretzels for 10 minutes or until they are a nice deep brown. Not all areas of the pretzel will get that deep brown, so just pull them out as soon as the outermost edges are that classic pretzel color. man-fuel-food-blog-soft-pretzels-recipe
  18. Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in the microwave to brush butter onto the pretzels. man-fuel-food-blog-soft-pretzels-recipe-melted-butter
  19. Brush each pretzel with a nice amount of butter to coat the entire top. Then throw them in the oven for another 1 to 2 minutes. You’ll end up with some rich, buttery, glistening pretzels. man-fuel-food-blog-buttereing-homemade-soft-pretzels-recipe
  20. Serve them immediately or, better yet, let them cool. I discovered that the pretzel flavor actually depends as these pretzels cool. They taste great piping hot, but they taste even more like traditional pretzels when they cool down. man-fuel-food-blog-homemade-soft-pretzels-recipe
  21. Eat them with your favorite mustard for a savory treat or eat them like a dessert dipped in a sweet vanilla glaze! These pretzels work as a salty or sweet treat. They’re also just wonderful plain or buttered.
  22. If you have leftover pretzels, place them in a sealed plastic zipper bag and refrigerate. Use them the next morning to make pretzel breakfast sandwiches! man-fuel-food-blog-homemade-pretzels-recipe-pretzel-bun-breakfast-sandwich