I love soft pretzel bites. Ever since I figured out how easy it is to make homemade soft pretzels, I rarely buy them. The ones I buy are usually stale and not nearly as fluffy and soft as I imagine. The ones I make at home are much better.
I’ve been experimenting with stuffing the soft pretzel bites with various ingredients, and the other day I decided to stuff them with mini pepperonis and mozzarella cheese. This may be my favorite variation yet. Like pizza bites but even better with the soft pretzel dough, especially straight out of the oven. The cheese is stretchy, the pepperoni is addicting, and the soft pretzel dough is fluffy and sturdy.
I popped quite a few in my mouth before even taking out my camera. Because I really stuffed these full, when they baked up, some of them started to pop open, but most of them still stayed wrapped up though the melted cheese oozed out a little, which only made them look even more appetizing.
I need to remember to make these for any big tv viewing gathering. I am also submitting this post to Yeastspotting.
Soft pretzel pizza bites
3/4 cups warm (110 to 115 degrees F) water
1/2 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoons salt
1 1/8 tsp active dry yeast
2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 ounce unsalted butter, melted
1/3 cup baking soda
1 egg yolk
1 cup of mini pepperoni
1 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese
1. Combine the warm water, sugar and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer and sprinkle the yeast on top. Allow it to sit for about 5 minutes. Add the flour and butter and using the dough hook attachment, mix on low speed until well combined. Change to medium speed and knead about 5 minutes until the dough is smooth and pulls away from the side of the bowl. Remove the dough from the bowl, and place the dough in a glass bowl oiled with vegetable oil. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for approximately 50 to 55 minutes or until the dough has doubled in size.
2. Divide the dough into 8 pieces. Roll out each piece of dough into a 12 inch rope. Using a sharp knife, cut rope into 1 inch pieces.
3. Take one piece of dough and flatten to a square/rectangle with your fingers. Then place 2 pieces of mini pepperoni and a little bit of shredded cheese in the middle. Make sure you don’t reach the edges of the dough or else you can’t completely seal the dough. Seal the dough back up to resemble the piece you originally cut, so it is cylindrical in shape and looks like a soft pretzel bite. You can shape it a little between your fingers. Repeat with remaining dough.
4. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
5. Using a large sauce pan, fill with water. Bring the water to a boil and add the baking soda.
6. Place the pretzels into the boiling water for 30 seconds. Remove them from the water using a large flat spatula. Place pretzels on baking sheet lined with parchment paper or silpat mat.
7. Beat one egg yolk. Brush the top of each pretzel bite with the beaten egg yolk. Bake until dark golden brown in color, approximately 6-8 minutes.
Soft pretzel recipe adapted from Alton Brown