- Makes 13
- Hands-on time 40 min, plus 1 hour resting. Oven time 10-12 min
Learn to make classic twisted pretzels with this authentic recipe from food writer and historian Regula Ysewijn. They’re easier to make than you’d think!
Recipe taken from Dark Rye and Honey Cake: Festival baking from the heart of the Low Countries by Regula Ysewijn (Murdoch Books, £26) and tested by delicious.
Next time: try Regula’s buckwheat pancakes filled with Gouda.
- 2g (0.2g saturated)
- 16.4g (0.5g sugars)
- 270g strong white bread flour, plus extra to dust
- 2 tbsp rapeseed or olive oil
- 1 tsp caster sugar
- 1 tsp instant dry yeast
- 180ml water
- ½ tsp salt
- Mix the flour, oil, sugar and yeast in a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook. Pour in 90ml water and start kneading. When completely absorbed, pour in another 90ml water and knead for 5 minutes. Set aside to rest for 5 minutes
- Add the salt and knead for 10 minutes until it has come together in a smooth and elastic dough that is neither too dry nor terribly wet. Cover the dough and set aside for 1 hour until it has doubled in size.
- the end of the resting time, line 2-3 baking trays with baking paper and heat the oven to 210°C fan/gas 8.
- Knock the air out of the dough and divide it into 13 equal pieces. Have a small bowl of water handy. Take a piece of dough in your hand and stretch, then moisten your hands with a little water and roll the dough into a 60cm strand that is just under 1cm wide.
- Sprinkle each lined tray with some flour to prevent the dough from sticking. Shape the strand into a pretzel straight onto the tray by twisting the ends of the strand together once or twice, depending on your preference. Moisten your index finger and thumb and stick the twisted ends onto the middle of the loop. You can correct the shape if needed once the krakeling is on the tray.
- Bake the pretzels for 10-12 minutes until they have a golden blush, then transfer to a wire rack to cool. Keep in an airtight container.
“These pretzels (brood krakelingen) are the common krakelingen seen in the paintings of Bruegel and other Flemish and Dutch masters of the 16th and 17th century. They’re bread-like, and even though the dough is without embellishment, they look appetising – especially served in a bread basket at a dinner party. The dough is forgiving and shaping it isn’t complicated – the pretzels are like Italian grissini breadsticks but with a more attractive shape. In the past, these krakelingen were hung on wooden stands, and because they’re not made from an enriched dough they were considered perfect for Lent.” Regula Ysewijn
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