Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Pretzel Bites & Pretzel Dogs

More back to school lunch ideas! Except it was hard for me to save enough of these to pack into lunch the next day- they were to delicious to stop tasting. Next I'm taking it a step further and using the pretzel dough wrapped around a hot dog. The girls are having a fundraiser for school in which they are selling these pretzel dogs 6 for $19. Haaaa- I'll write the school a check straight out and make my own for way cheaper- thanks for the idea though! 


1 c milk
1 pkg active dry yeast (or 2 1/4 tbl)
3 tbl packed light brown sugar
8 tbl butter
1 tea fine salt
1/3 c baking soda
2 tbl coarse salt

Warm the milk in a saucepan to about 110 degrees, just a nice temp that doesn't hurt your finger. Pour the milk into a large mixing bowl, sprinkling the yeast on top. Let the yeast soften about 2 mins then stir in the brown sugar & 1 cup flour.

Soften 2 tablespoons of the butter (don't melt it!) and stir it into the mix. Add the remaining 1 1/4 flour & the fine salt to make a sticky dough. Turn it onto a lightly floured surface and knead for about 5 mins. 

Cover the bowl & let it sit for about an hour until doubling in size.

Preheat oven to 450. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or spray with cooking spray. Dissolve the baking soda into 3 cups of water in a shallow baking dish. Set pan by the prepared baking sheet.

Punch the dough down and turn it onto a floured surface, divide the dough into 6 pieces. 

If you want 6 pretzels, roll out and make a 24-30 in rope. Shape into a pretzel. For bites, stretch and roll out into ropes, then cut into smaller bites. 

Gently dip the pretzel or bite into the soda solution, then arrange on the baking sheet. Sprinkle with coarse salt.

Bake until golden, 8-10 mins for bites, 10-12 mins for pretzels. While they are baking melt the remaining 6 tbl butter and pour into a shallow dish. Set next to a cooling rack.

After cooking, brush the pretzels with melted butter & let cool.

Pretzel dogs:
Wrap the dough around a hot dog (I used a jumbo beef dog here) and dunk the whole thing in the baking soda mix then line on a baking sheet with parchment paper. (I didn't salt them, and they were plenty salty without the added spice) Bake for about 13 mins, or as the dough is golden, but not burned on the bottom- It's a delicate dance! Brush with butter & let cool slightly before serving. We loved ours dipped in mustard! 

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Blueberry or Cranberry Lemon Scones

Guys. This post was eaten up somehow. And I had already deleted the images to make room for more silly videos of my kids doing ridiculous stuff. So I'm scamming my own Instagram feed. Because... HELLO GORGEOUS!

These are the perfect not-too-sweet snack to toss into a lunchbox in the morning. A very not-a-cookie-because-I'm-a-SCONE! kind of treat. The recipe is adapted from one a friend turned me onto here. I've added the lemon, which WOWZA, punches up the volume a million percent. But of course if you don't have a lemon on hand (although this recipe alone should persuade to keep a backup lemon at all times) they are great without it. Same thing with changing out the dried blueberries & cranberries. Different flavors, I love them both, don't make me choose. Just don't use the Ocean Spray dried cranberries. I know too much about the seedy underbelly of that nonsense. I picked some up at Sprouts, but Trader Joes, or even our Smiths has some regular dried fruits for not-all-your-monies. 

To the recipe! 

1 1/2 c. plus 2 tbl flour
1/4 c. sugar
2 tea. baking powder
pinch of salt
1 c. dried fruit (blueberries, cranberries, get creative!)
zest of one lemon (or orange, maybe?)
1 c. heavy cream
2 tbl butter, melted

Preheat your oven to 375. In a large bowl combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and stir around. Then add the fruit & zest, and mix, slowly adding the cream until moist. On parchment lined baking sheets, form into balls and flatten the top to accept the brushed on butter. Brush on the butter and sprinkle some sugar on top. (optional, but seriously, you should). Bake for 15-20 mins until golden brown. Enjoy. Try not to eat too many in one sitting. Well, scratch that. Eat the whole batch while no one's looking.