You know how sometimes when you see a new recipe, it sounds so good that you just want to make it right then and there?
That's how I felt when I saw these.
Except it took me weeks to finally get around to making them.
But they kept coming back to my mind over and over. I just knew they would be fun to make, and that the kids would love them. I had a feeling I'd like them too.
I had NO idea how much Grant would like them.
When I made them on the 4th of July for a little cook-out we were doing, they smelled so good as they were baking and we couldn't wait to dig into them.....and I have to say.....they were the hit of the night. With children and adults alike.
Oh, we had delicious grilled chicken and some yummy salads and a fantastic berry trifle too.....but these humble little hot dog halves wrapped in pretzel dough were just amazing.
I liked them dipped in a mixture of ketchup and mustard.....but even unadorned, they were fantastic.
Mini-Pretzel Dogs - from Joy the Baker
Yield: 16 mini-dogs (half hot dogs)
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
2 ¼ teaspoons (1 package) active dry yeast
4-1/2 cups all purpose flour (I used half whole wheat)
2 teaspoons salt
2 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled
8 hot dogs, cut in half
about 10 cups of water
2/3 cup baking soda
For topping the pretzels before baking:
1 large egg, beaten, with a splash of water
Kosher salt or coarse sea salt and pepper for topping
In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine warm water and sugar. Sprinkle the yeast on top of the water and set aside for 5 minutes. The mixture will begin to foam and froth. If it doesn’t, throw the mixture away and start again with new yeast.
Once the yeast and water is frothy, add the flour, salt, and melted butter. Using the dough hook, mix on low speed until well combined. Increase the speed to medium and knead the dough until it is smooth and pulls away from the side of the bowl, creating a ball of dough around the dough hook. Beat on medium speed for approximately 4 minutes.
Remove the dough from the bowl. The dough will be soft, pliable, and just a bit sticky. That’s perfect. Scrape any residue out of the bowl and coat the bowl with a bit of oil. Place the dough back in the bowl, sprinkle with flour, cover with plastic wrap, and store in a warm place to rise. Allow dough to rise, until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
Place baking racks in the center and upper third of the oven. Preheat oven to 425° F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper, and lightly brush the paper with oil. It’s important to brush the parchment paper or the pretzels will stick!
(Note: I only baked one sheet at a time - if you bake both sheets at once, I would recommend switching the pans mid-way through the baking time)
Combine water and baking soda in a large pan (8 quart is fine) saucepan and bring to a boil.
While the water comes to a boil, turn the dough out onto a clean, slightly oiled work surface. Divide dough into 16 pieces.
Start with the fingers of both hands in the center of the dough, and roll, moving your hands outward as you roll. Roll the dough along the oiled surface until you have about a 12-inch piece of rope.
Wrap dough around a hot dog half, making sure to seal the ends.
When water has come to a boil, gently lower a few pretzel dogs into the boiling water. Boil for 30 seconds. Remove carefully, using a flat, slotted spatula. Place on prepared baking sheet. Brush boiled pretzels with beaten egg, and add coarse sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper.
Bake until deeply golden brown, about 12 to 14 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack for a few minutes before serving warm.
Soft pretzels are best enjoyed the day they are made.
If you’re not going to enjoy all your pretzel dogs, double wrap them in plastic wrap and store in the freezer. When ready to serve, transfer out of plastic and into a piece of foil. Wrap well and bake in a 350 degree oven for 12 minutes, or until heated through.
Linked to Trick or Treat Tuesday