Cheese Filled Herbed Pretzels

Making homemade pretzels are easier than you think. If you have made any yeast bread, and even if you haven’t, give this a try. I promise once you’ve tasted a home made pretzel you will be making them often.

You can use any herbs and cheeses you want, but my favorite combinations are Basil/Mozzarella & Parmesan or fresh Rosemary (Pictured here) and those same cheeses. But you can also use Italian seasoning. I like to use those cheeses not just for the flavor, but the melt. But please use what ever you have on hand. If you don’t want cheese filled, you can just make herbed or plain pretzels with this recipe.

WHAT YOU”LL NEED:

For Dough:

  • 1 1/2 cups a little warmer than room temp water (between 75-80°)
  • 1 Package or 2 1/4 tsp active dry or instant yeast
  • 1 1/2 tbls sugar (yes, you need sugar for many reasons)
  • 2 tsp dried herbs or 2 Tbls fresh Rosemary (not dried)
  • 4 1/4 cups Organic all-purpose flour
  • 6 tbls unsalted butter softened (Not melted)

Cooking Liquid: 10 cups water & 3/4 cup baking soda

Filling:

  • 2 cups grated Mozzarella cheese (please grate your own. You’ll thank me)
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan Cheese

Toppings:

  • Egg Wash: 1 egg, 1 tbls water beaten
  • Grated Parmesan, herbs, melted butter, garlic powder, course salt. (All of these are optional. Let your creative juices flow, or keep it simple and only use course salt)

Directions: For the dough: 1. Combine water yeast and sugar in bowl of stand mixer. let sit for 10 minutes or until it’s starts to get foamy. 2. Add the flour, salt and butter and any herbs you are using. Knead on med for about 10 minutes. (dough should be smooth and have pulled away from the sides of the bowl)

3. Cover the bowl and let dough rise till almost doubled in size (Almost, because we still want a little rise left in the dough) About an hour. (you can use your oven with the light on for this. I have noticed it is about the right amount of heat. No heat, jut the light) 4. Meanwhile combine the cheeses in a bowl and refrigerate until needed. 5. Preheat oven to 425° 6. Line 2 large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. 7. Add the water and baking soda to a large pot and bring to a boil.

8. Divide dough into 8 equal portions. 9. One at a time, use your hands to roll each dough portion into a 16′ rope, then roll flat to 4″ wide. (Piece should end up being 16″ long x 4″ wide.) 10. Add about 3- 3 1/2 tbls cheese along the edge and length of each piece, leaving about 1/2 inch space between edge of dough and cheese. (pictured here.)

11. Tightly roll the rope up, starting on the long side. Tucking the edges so that no cheese escapes. 12. Make a U shape and cross the ends over and pinching them to the bottom of dough. 13. Lay each pretzel on the lined cookie sheet. (Continue with this process until all 8 portions are a pretzel.) 14. One at a time, boil the pretzels in water for 30 seconds each.

15. Remove the pretzels from water with slotted spoon or spatula. Drain a bit and place back on lined baking sheet. 16. Once all pretzels have been boiled, brush the tops with egg wash and sprinkle with a little course salt. 17. Place in preheated oven and bake 16-18 minutes. allow to cool a bit before serving.

Cheese filled pretzel cut open

You can make these the main dish, served with a salad, or as a snack. I like to serve these particular pretzels with garlicky marinara, but you can serve them with any dipping sauce you choose, or just as is. Here are some ideas for dipping sauces. Beer & Cheese, Ranch or Honey Mustard.

I hope you enjoy this recipe, and as always…..LET”S GET COOKING!

Kristy

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