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Author Notes: I wouldn’t describe myself as a sports fan per say. Maybe it’s because I am from Connecticut and we have no legitimate sports teams aside from my beloved (RIP!) Hartford Whalers. I mean I enjoy a good football tailgate, mostly for the keg stands of course. And who doesn’t like the Super Bowl- I look forward to the spread of food all year! And of course baseball- ah day drinking and jumbo pretzels. No wonder it is America’s pastime!
Now I no longer have to sit through nine innings to get my pretzel fix- I cracked the code on pretzel challah! Boiling pretzels in water and baking soda gives it that crunchy brown crust and a pretzely taste (sounds reminiscent of bagels!) Would that work for challah as well? Works like a charm. I decided to make these into adorable little rolls. Can’t you just imagine the best sandwich ever on one of these suckers? —What Jew Wanna Eat
- 1 Envelope instant yeast
- 3 3/4 cups Bread flour
- 3/4 cup Warm water (about 100 degrees)
- 2 Large eggs plus 1 for glazing
- 1/2 cup Vegetable or canola oil
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- 1/4 cup Sugar
- 3 quarts Water
- 1/2 cup Baking soda
- First up, make your slurry combining 3/4 cup of flour, yeast and 3/4 cup warm water. Let sit for 10 minutes until it puffs up. Then whisk in the two eggs, salt, sugar and oil until incorporated.
- Then add the rest of the flour and mix with a dough hook (or knead by hand!) until smooth- about 5-10 minutes. Place the dough in a warm, cleaned bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let the dough ferment in a warm place until it has doubled in size, about 1.5 hours.
- Now divide the ball into 12 equal pieces- first divide in two and then divide each half in three and each of those pieces in half.
- Roll each of these balls into a strand. You may have an issue of them stretching out. I did! That darn gluten. Let the strands rest and roll out again until each strand is about 10 inches long.
- Now to make the rolls! Tie each strand into a knot, and then tuck the other ends under. Repeat with the other 11 rolls.
- Proof again for another 1.5 hours and now it’s time to boil! Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Bring 3 quarts (12 cups) of water and 1/2 cup baking soda to a boil, making sure all the baking soda is dissolved.
- Put six rolls in at a time and let boil for about 30 seconds. Flip and boil for 30 more seconds. Remove with a slotted spoon and dab off any excess water. Repeat with the other 6 rolls and put them on baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Whisk up one egg and egg wash the rolls. Then sprinkle with a coarse salt.
- Bake for 20 minutes and it’s challah time!