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Homemade Soft Pretzel Bites

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1 1/2 Cups Warm Water
2 Tbsp Light Brown Sugar
1 Package Active Dry Yeast (2 1/4 Tsp)
6 Tbsp Unsalted Butter, melted
2 1/2 Tsp Kosher Salt
4 1/2 to 5 Cups All Purpose Flour
Vegetable Oil
3 Quarts Water
1/2 Cup Baking Soda
1 Egg, beaten
1 Tbsp Cold Water
Coarse Sea Salt
  1. Combine cups water, sugar, yeast, and butter in the bowl of a stand mixer and mix with the dough hook until combined. Let sit for 5 minutes.
  2. Add the salt and flour and mix on low speed until combined.
  3. Increase the speed to medium and continue kneading until the dough is smooth and begins to pull away from the side of the bowl, about 3 to 4 minutes. If the dough appears too wet, add additional flour, 1 tablespoon at a time.
  4. Remove the dough from the bowl, place on a flat surface and knead into a ball with your hands.
  5. Oil a bowl with vegetable oil, add the dough and turn to coat with the oil.
  6. Cover with a clean towel or plastic wrap and place in a warm spot until the dough doubles in size, about 1 hour.
  7. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
  8. Start boiling the 3 quarts of water in a small roasting pan over high heat.
  9. Remove the dough from the bowl and place on a flat surface.
  10. Divide the dough into 8 equal pieces, about 4 1/4 to 4 1/2 ounces each. Roll each piece into a long rope measuring 22 inches and shape. Cut the dough into one inch pieces to make the pretzel bites.
  11. Add baking soda to boiling water.
  12. Boil the pretzel bites in the water solution in batches, about 15 bites at a time. Boil for about 30 seconds.
  13. Remove with a large slotted spoon and place on a baking sheet that has been sprayed with cooking spray. Make sure they are not touching.
  14. Brush the tops with the egg wash and season liberally with the salt.
  15. Place into the oven and bake for 15 to 18 minutes until golden brown.
  16. Remove to a baking rack and let rest 5 minutes before eating.
  17. Serve with Beer Cheese Sauce available prepared in the Deli or make your own with the following recipe:
Beer Cheese Sauce
2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
2 Tablespoons flour
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup beer
8 ounce shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon paprika
salt and pepper, to taste
  1. In a medium nonstick pot, melt the butter, then whisk in the flour all at once and cook for a couple of minutes, until it smells lightly toasted.
  2. Slowly pour in the whipping cream, and the beer, whisking constantly to prevent lumps.
  3. Stir in the cheese until just melted, then remove from heat and add the seasonings.
Course: Appetizer, Side
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