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WFO Pretzels

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  • WFO Pretzels

    Saturday night I took my second step into bread making in the WFO. My wife gave me a book by a French baker, now residing in Bath England. Richard Bertinet's book titled Crust, Bread to get your teeth into is a nice addition to anyone's artisan bread library. Full of excellent photography and easy to read information, I recommend it to anyone.

    The pretzels were an interesting process as like many good breads they required the use of a ferment dough. When this ferment was added to the flour it took some real mixing/kneading to incorporate it fully. The recipe then specified 100g bits of dough be rolled out to 20cm (8 in) lengths and then formed into the pretzel shape. If found this to be impossible without the pretzel ending up being quite a bulbous knot, even before proofing a further 45-60 minutes. I rolled mine out to about to more like 16 inches in order to achieve a nice looking twist with some space between the arms. (As you will see in the photo below they still came out to be cubby little golden fella's!)

    The results were wonderful. My wife commented how beautiful they were over and over, comparing them favorably to the photo in the book. They came out of the oven as the family was enjoying a board game together and needless to say the game was put on hold just as soon as the pretzels cooled long enough to eat. The two batches I made yielded 24 pretzels and they were half gone before the lights went out that night!


  • #2
    Re: WFO Pretzels

    Those look great!

    Did you boil them before baking?

    Dave
    My thread:
    http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/d...ress-2476.html
    My costs:
    http://spreadsheets.google.com/pub?k...Xr0fvgxuh4s7Hw
    My pics:
    http://picasaweb.google.com/dawatsonator

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: WFO Pretzels

      Those look excellent!
      My Oven Thread:
      http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/d...-oven-633.html

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: WFO Pretzels

        I've always been intimidated by pretzels because they are boiled in food-grade lye solution.

        "food grade" aparently means reduced levels of arsenic, lead, and mercury.

        Read the handling cautions before beginning this experiment.
        My geodesic oven project: part 1, part 2

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: WFO Pretzels

          Thanks for the compliments! No boiling.

          Ferment dough on day one. Mix with flour, yeast, butter, etc on day two. Proof, cut to size and shape brush with egg (whisked with salt). Proof 45-60 min more, coat with egg once again, sprinkle sea salt and into the oven. Baked at 500 for 10-12 minutes.

          I can give specific details to those who want to try them

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: WFO Pretzels

            Thanks - I'm thinking over half the forum will want to try these!!!

            Please provide more details!

            Happy new year!

            Christo
            My oven progress -
            http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/c...cina-1227.html
            sigpic

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            • #7
              Re: WFO Pretzels

              Yes, Please...what's the recipe?

              Lou

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: WFO Pretzels

                Originally posted by dmun View Post
                I've always been intimidated by pretzels because they are boiled in food-grade lye solution.

                "food grade" aparently means reduced levels of arsenic, lead, and mercury.

                Read the handling cautions before beginning this experiment.
                Boiling in lye is insane, and should only be attempted by experts who have proper training and equipment. That stuff is caustic as hell. Much safer (and almost as effective)way to raise the pH of the crust is to boil in a baking soda solution for a minute a side, lift out with a flat strainer, and place on the prepared peel. The boiling will give you the same chewy consistency whether you use lye, baking soda, or just plain water. They may not be quite as dark brown as if you used lye, but on the plus side, this method increases the life expectancy of you and your loved ones by years.

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                • #9
                  Re: WFO Pretzels

                  does anyone have a good Pretzel recipe?

                  Pizza Man

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: WFO Pretzels

                    Originally posted by Pizza Man View Post
                    does anyone have a good Pretzel recipe?

                    Pizza Man
                    The post ahead of this one has a link.

                    Click on pretzels.
                    My thread:
                    http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/d...ress-2476.html
                    My costs:
                    http://spreadsheets.google.com/pub?k...Xr0fvgxuh4s7Hw
                    My pics:
                    http://picasaweb.google.com/dawatsonator

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: WFO Pretzels

                      I use one on Cooks.com that calls for a 2 TBS baking soda/some forgotten amount of water, wash the formed pretzels, drain, then bake. It says that the soda needs to be completely dissolved in the H2O or it will cause splotches on the pretzels. I've never once been able to dissolve the soda in the water. The Pretzels are pretty awesome, coated with multiple layers of melted butter. That's the key. Anybody had a Pretzel Maker pretzel? KILLER!
                      GJBingham
                      -----------------------------------
                      Everyone makes mistakes. The trick is to make mistakes when nobody is looking.

                      -

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: WFO Pretzels

                        Note that the first post recipe did not boil the pretzels.

                        Gotta try that recipe! looks great.
                        sigpicTiempo para guzarlos..... ...enjoy every sandwich!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: WFO Pretzels

                          Stuart,
                          Did you use the recipe out of the book CRUST? I just bought the book about 2-3 weeks ago and haven't used it yet. I did try and watch the DVD that came with it, but I fell asleep and still can't remember any of it - GRIN.
                          Chuck

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: WFO Pretzels

                            Originally posted by gjbingham View Post
                            I've never once been able to dissolve the soda in the water.
                            George,

                            Did you heat up the water to a boil? The hot water will dissolve the baking soda with no problem. I have made several batches of pretzels with very good results. After forming the pretzels, dip them into the boiling solution until they float, then pop them into the oven.

                            I've been wanting to make some authentic Philly-style pretzels for years, but I didn't know the "secret" to getting the perfect dark brown skin. Now that I know it's a lye solution, I'm not so interested in trying them

                            Fortunately, a local bagel place in town has started making authentic Philly pretzels so I can get my occasional fix.
                            Ken H. - Kentucky
                            42" Pompeii

                            Pompeii Oven Construction Video Updated!

                            Oven Thread ... Enclosure Thread
                            Cost Spreadsheet ... Picasa Web Album

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                            • #15
                              Re: WFO Pretzels

                              Thanks Ken for the suggestion. Do you know how much soda and water the recipe calls for? I'll try it your way next time.

                              The recipe I used was a cup (or possibly a half cup) of boiling water to 2 TBS soda. I never got it all disolved. The wash is applied with a brush on the pretzels.
                              GJBingham
                              -----------------------------------
                              Everyone makes mistakes. The trick is to make mistakes when nobody is looking.

                              -

                              Comment

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