Wednesday, January 12, 2011

How last night's breadsticks turned into pretzels...

So, I came across this recipe last week sometime and have been craving these ever since. Yesterday I decided I would take on the task of making bread from scratch for the VERY FIRST time! The tea biscuits I made with my mom when I was 10 don't count...

out-of-this-world breadsticks
adapted from here
  • 1 1/8 cups warm water
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 3 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 Tbsp salt
  • 3/4 tsp minced fresh basil
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp instant yeast
  • 1 or 2 Tbsp butter, melted  
  1. in a medium bowl, combine water + sugar + yeast; stir and let sit 5 minutes or until bubbly
  2. take a larger bowl and combine olive oil + cheese + garlic + basil + italian seasoning + salt; mix together then add the yeast mixture
  3. add in all the flour and stir until it comes together as a big lumpy dough. rub all over with a little olive oil and cover with plastic wrap. let it stands for about half hour
  4. to make breadsticks: preheat oven to 175 C (350 F). flour the surface where you'll be kneading the dough. then knead the dough on it a few times till it becomes supple
  5. divide the dough into 2 parts. divide each part into 12 smaller part. roll each smaller part into 9 inch length rope, twist it a bit before you place it on greased baking sheet
  6. let the twisted ropes rise again until double in size about 40 minutes. before baking, brush the ropes with melted butter and sprinkle some more salt and and italian seasoning.  
  7. bake in the preheated oven for 18-20 minutes or until it has nice golden brown, remove from oven and brush with melted butter again...
* I used dried parmesan instead of fresh because that was all I had. I also subbed some sort of Italian Pasta seasoning for the oregano.

When I let the dough rise for the first time it didn't look like anything had changed... The dough wasn't as elastic as I thought it should have been but I soldiered on anyway. Am I ever glad I did! WOW. My second batch that I put in the oven were heavenly. They tasted almost exactly like Pretzelmaker pretzels. The trick is to bake them for about 15-18 mins rather than the full 20... These leaves them soft rather than crunchy on the outside like a breadstick.

If you're going to be around the house and have time to wait for these to rise I would say to definitely try them out. They can be made with stuff you usually have around the house and they would be great with a dip. I actually dipped mine in cream cheese just like I do with my pretzels and ummmmmmmm yum. Just let me warn you that you won't be able to stop eating these warm, garlicky, satisfying little sticks....

Thanks to little daisy's world for the great recipe!

xo Janelle

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