Wednesday, June 1, 2011

His & Hers Pretzel Dogs

Some days I just want to cook something that I know Mr. C will love.  He (a meat and cheese lover) puts up with me cooking vegan/vegetarian and generally trying random stuff I've never made before. He is super supportive and gives me good "normal people" feedback as I realize my tastes are fairly different than most.

One of his favorite foods is soft pretzels.  And beer.  And brats. And cheese.  So I figured...why don't I combine them!? The results were really extraordinary.  I made a meaty/cheesy one for him and a vegan version for myself.  My weakness is dipping sauces so I made a vegan spicy aioli to go with mine.
To incorporate the beer, I added some of our home brew (a german heffe) to the pretzel dough in place of some of the water.
I used locally made bratwurts instead of the traditional hot dog in the meat-y version, and vegan hotdogs for mine.  I'm generally not a huge fan of fake meat products because of all the extra stuff they add in, but for this recipe I just couldn't resist.  The one I chose was surprisingly tasty, but I can't remember the brand! Argh! 

For the meat-y version I melted some extra sharp cheddar on top during the last 5 minutes of the baking process to give it some bubble.  Mr. C says "great addition!"
Wrap pretzel dough around dogs.

Boil in baking soda water! Adding baking soda to the water raises the pH of the water (making it more basic). This reaction helps to create the shiny brown crust on outside of the soft pretzel, so don't skip it!  Interestingly, traditional German pretzels are made with lye (pH 13--vs pH 8 for baking soda water), giving an even deeper brown crust.  Baking soda is cheaper and more accessible than lye AND the results are still delicious. :-)
 After boiling, the pretzel on the dogs is more puffed up and yellow than before. 
 Bake and enjoy! 

Real dogs!  Cause I think they are super cute! :-) And, if I'm being honest, I LOVE my new camera.  I really need to RTFM (read the freaking manual) and figure out what all the buttons do. But, even as a total newb it's so much better at shooting in the dark cave that is my condo.  Hurrah!



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Pretzel Dogs
Vegan (with a non-vegan option) pretzel dogs made with a beer flavored dough. Easy, fun and delicious
Ingredients
  • 1/2C Warm water
  • 1Tbs Brown sugar
  • 2tsp Salt
  • 1C Warm beer
  • 1 packet Active dry yeast
  • 2Tbs Olive oil
  • 4 1/2C Flour (all purpose)
  • 2/3C Baking soda
  • 8 Hot Dogs (or Sausages)
Instructions
1. Combine the water, beer, salt and brown sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer. Add the yeast and let sit for 5 minutes. The yeast should be nice and bubbly at this point. If it isn't your yeast might be dead, start over with fresh yeast! 2. Add the flour and olive oil to the bowl, mix on medium speed until thoroughly combined. My mixer took 3-4 minutes. 3. Shape the dough into a ball and transfer to a clean bowl that can hold double the current volume of the ball and has been lightly coated in olive oil. Cover loosely with a towel or plastic wrap and leave to rise in a warm place for 60 minutes or until doubled in size. 4. Boil a large pot of water and add the baking soda (carefully as it can boil over). And preheat oven to 450F. 5. Separate the dough into 8 pieces (this will make a high pretzel to dog ratio, you can split it to more dogs for a higher meat to pretzel ratio) and roll into a long rope, about 1/2 inch in diameter. Wrap around the dogs pinching tightly on the ends. 6. Working in small batches (1 or 2 dogs) add the dog to the boiling water for 30 seconds each. Remove dogs to a wire rack (or just a sheet) to dry. 7. Brush the boiled dogs lightly with olive oil and if desired sprinkle with salt or other herbs. 8. Bake for 15 minutes until pretzels are a deep golden brown. If desired, after 10 minutes top the pretzels with cheese and continue to bake the final 5 minutes. Cool pretzels and enjoy.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 8 dogs

6 comments:

forgottenbeast said...

I have GOT to make this! I love beer, pretzels, vegan dogs and pigs in a blanket! I usually make easy pigs using bisquik, but these look SO MUCH better! Especially with a big pile of spicy mustard...

Karla said...

Honestly, the dough is REALLY easy too, you don't have to knead or anything. Just sit there and watch it rise ;-). Also, I froze about half of them (after wrapping, before boiling) and they are really great to just take out and make for dinner.

Tiff said...

These look great! They look even better with the beer in the back. :)

Glad I stumbled upon your blog from http://forgottenbeast.wordpress.com

Karla said...

Tiff! Thanks. :-) I was so proud that we brewed our own beer that I've been putting it in EVERYTHING. I probably need to brew another batch about now!

I'm glad you found me too, let me know if you try any recipes. :-)

Jodie said...

Great recipe Karla! Tried it tonight with Tofurky itallian sausage for me and regular for matt. Worked great! Thanks :-)

Karla said...

I'm glad you liked it! :-D

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