Saturday, March 9


it turns out that i'm moving away from my desire to make sweet things.
i hadn't really noticed, until i was looking back through my photo catalog.
this year has NOT been a cakey one so far.
a LOT of savory sumptuous suppers,
a pile of pizzas,
and more recently, a whole mess of these brilliant soft pretzels.
yeah, that's what's good, neighbors.
check it:

the horseradish dijon with the malt-vinegar-brined toasted mustard and caraway seeds?
dudes, c'mon- that's expert.
the scallion and toasted dill seed vegan creamchee'? also expert.
and that pot of straightforward pats of vegan butter? experté.
do you see how F*ing perfectly super-sexxxy those pretzels are??!
i mean, seriously, those are lookin' goooooood.
and as always, i did NOT make them exactly like i did last time....
you wanna read about the new-new?
then skip ahead, i guess.
everybody else, here's the latest:
preheat your oven to 450℉ convection.
add 1/4 cup warm water;
2 T real new hampshire maple syrup;
1 1/2 tsp bread machine yeast.
let it bloom until bubbly-
in your stand mixer, with the dough hook enabled, knead together:
1 tsp salt;
3 cups king arthur a.p. flour;
3 T wheat bran;
3 T oat bran;
1/2 tsp baking soda;
1 pkg quick-rise yeast;
1 T olive oil;
3 T soft vegan butter;
3/4 cup warmed s'milk;
2 T warm water...
add the maple-yeast-water mix,
as well and combine it all on low speed for five minutes, then turn it up a bit,
and give it another 'nother 5 or more minutes to really get those gluten chains formed.
moisten your hands and form a tiiight dough ball,
cover it and let it rise up until doubled.
how long will that take?
i dunno; maybe use your eyes, bro.
you'll know it when you see it.
get a big pot of water boiling, with 3 heaped T of baking soda to make it alkaline af.
punch down you fat dough ball,
and divide it into 9 equal pieces.
roll each one out to over a foot long, form a U, twist the open ends, and fold 'em over-
y'know, to make a frickin' pretzel shape, obvi.
now, you'll need a spider, or a wire strainer, or a slotted spoon, even,
to dunk and flip and remove your pretzel shapes from the water.
oh, y'gotta dunk 'em, a few at a time, and let 'em float up-
give those lil twists 30 seconds on each side, and remove them.
arrange them on a parchment-lined baking tray,
and hit 'em with those coarse fat sea salt sprankles.
rules is rules, and unsalted soft pretzels are kind of a crime, man.
don't do that.
but, if you really want to be fresh and tight and dope?
maybe freak a few off with two-tone sesame seed spranks, too.
too much is the right amount,
and that's some expert exxxxtra activation, for certain.
bake 'em for 12-14 minutes, but keep your eye on the scene.
they wanna get dark and lovely, but they're prone to getting overly dry and bummery,
or so i've heard.
so far, i've only had amazing times and amazing pretzels to show for it.
MORE pretzels.
that's what i want.
it might even be what i need.
in fact, what i'm dreaming about these days is a pizza and pretzel truck,
driving around, serving up looks,
and radical artisan vegan pizza pies,
as well as custom mustards and allll the pretzels. that so wrong?
i think it's a genius plan for the future;
but i also really love those things SO more than the average ordinary human.
an extraordinary appetite for carbohydrates, and hot ovenly lovin'.
that's me.
i am who i am, and that's a baker man.
and about a dozen other things, all of which are so specialized that i'll forever
be at the outskirts of regular real life.
i'm only weird because i only like what i like,
and it's barely anything that most folks i meet would ever want
to base their everydays on.
....but from my perspective,
they're F*ing up, and i'm cleaning up on and cornering the market on
a peripheral world based on bread with stuff on it.
i think i'm onto somethin' here;
never quiet, never soft.....

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