Whole Wheat Pretzels

by angelika on March 10, 2011

It was our day to supply snack at preschool, and little man and I really enjoy making something together to offer his friends. One of our favorite snacks to bring is whole wheat pretzels. Our preschool is pretty strict about snack, only whole grain, no sugar, we’d appreciate it if you’d stick to organic fruits and vegetables etc. These little pretzels really taste a little more like bagels than pretzels, in texture especially. Perhaps because I don’t boil them before I bake them. Even so, they are really delicious and super fun and easy to make. 
Whole Wheat Pretzels

1 teaspoon instant yeast
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1-2 cups whole wheat pastry 
1/2-1 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup warm milk
1 egg beaten with a tsp of milk (optional)
Preheat oven to 425º.
In the mixer bowl mix the yeast, sugar and milk. Let it stand until it bubbles. Mine went 10 minutes on a colder day. In a medium sized bowl mix 1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour, 1/2 cup all purpose flour and the salt. You will use between 2-3 cups of flour total, and you can combine it however you like. I like to use just a touch of all purpose flour for it’s higher gluten content. In this batch I only needed 2 cups. Pour the flour into the yeast and mix it with the paddle attachment. Once it comes together, switch to the dough hook and let it kneed for 5 minutes. You are looking for a stretchy dough. You can also kneed it by hand if you’d like. 
Turn the dough out onto a floured board. For my pretzels I made them about 4″ wide. Perfect kid size. I got 16 out of the recipe I posted. (which I actually doubled to make 32) Divide the dough into little balls by cutting it in half. So cut the dough in half, then divide each half into fourths, then each fourth into sixteenths.  Cover the balls with a damp towel while you shape them. 
Roll each little ball into a rope about the length of a sheet pan, laying the long way. This was great fun for my 4 year old. Lightly oil a sheet pan and lay each rope out, then cover with plastic wrap. 
When you have all the snakes ropes rolled out, start with the first rope and fashion it into a pretzel. Lay the pretzels onto the baking sheet. I used a egg wash on the pretzels to give them a shine, and sprinkled with a little coarse salt. 
Bake until golden, between 12-15 minutes depending on how thick the ropes were. Remove from the sheet tray onto a cooling rack. 
I like my pretzels with mustard, but little man insists on cream cheese with his. When we send them to school we send cream cheese. (I think mustard stains too much for a self serve snack.) 
A votre santé! 

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