I love snacking on sourdough pretzels, but for some strange reason, they’re impossible to find over here. Being me, I decided to start making my own.

Sourdough Pretzels

3/4-1 cup sourdough starter
2 3/4 cup flour
1/2 cup warm water
1 scant tsp salt
1 dipped tsp honey (optional)
1T baking soda
Sea salt for sprinkling

If you’re refrigerating your starter, take it out of the fridge the night before you plan to bake and let it come to room temperature. In the morning, remove 1/2 cup starter and feed that 1/2 cup with 1/4 cup flour and equal weight warm water (around 3 T). Mix it up, cover loosely with plastic wrap, and set aside for a couple of hours. Feed your mother starter and return it to the fridge.

Once the starter has fed and grown a bit (it should come to 3/4-1 cup starter), it’s time to get started. Mix the water, salt, and honey (if using) in a bowl until the salt dissolves. Add the starter, stirring to break it up (*note: make sure you don’t add your starter to HOT water. That kills the yeast. Stick a finger in the water and, if you can comfortably hold it in there, the water should be fine. If you get scalded, wait for it to cool down).

Add the flour, 1/2 cup at a time, and knead to form a fairly stiff dough. Place the dough in a clean bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let proof for 2 hours.

Remove the dough from the bowl, cut it into several pieces, and form each piece into a long rope. Either shape the rope into pretzels or cut it into small pillows to make pretzel nuggets.

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C/425 F. While the oven’s preheating, bring a pan of water to the boil on the hob, adding the baking soda and stirring to dissolve. When the water’s boiling, add the pretzels in batches and boil them for about 30 seconds to a minute to develop that nice crust on the outside. Remove them to a cooling rack set over a baking sheet so they can dry off. Once they’re dried, place them on a baking sheet lined with a silpat and sprinkle them with sea salt or toppings of your choice. Bake for 40-45 minutes, until browned and crunchy (if you want a softer pretzel, bake for 20-25 minutes). Cool and enjoy!

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