I really wanted something salty and pretzels came to my mind. Of course it took me awhile to dig through my stacks of recipes-and I have a lot of them-to find this one. The original recipe called for butter, but the Earth Balance margarine tastes good.
1 1/2 cup warm water
1 1/2 packages active dry yeast
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup bread flour
3 cups unbleached white flour
2 cups warm water
2 tablespoons baking soda
2 – 4 tablespoons Earth Balance margarine, melted
Sprinkle yeast on lukewarm water in mixing bowl; stir to dissolve. Add sugar, salt; stir to dissolve. Add flour; knead dough (I use a large stand mixer) until smooth and elastic. Allow to rise at least 1/2 hour. (I let the dough rise for at least an hour)
In a separate bowl, mix 2 cups warm water with 2 tablespoons baking soda. Stir often. Grease two large cookie sheets; set aside.
Once dough has risen (about double in size); pinch off bits of dough and roll into a long rope and shape. Dip shaped pretzel dough in baking soda solution; place on greased baking sheet. Allow to rise 10 minutes or more. Bake in a 450°F oven for 8 – 10 minutes. Brush with melted margarine and sprinkle with course salt, or for a sweeter option, cinnamon sugar.