Overall, concessions stands are usually overpriced and not worth the hassle.
But almost always I’ll spring for a soft pretzel at a Badger football game. These aren’t just the typical frozen pretzels that rotate constantly in a glass box. They are the soft, fluffy and perfectly salty Ben’s Amish pretzels.
They remind me of the Amish pretzels my mom and I eat in Shipshewana in Northern Indiana. They make me so happy.
I’ve been craving soft pretzels for about three weeks, and a slightly frozen pretzel from the grocery store was not going to cut it. So, instead, these pretzels filled the void.
This week we’re getting crazy by playing with active dry yeast and raising the temperature on the oven. Start off by preheating the oven to 425 F.
Heat up the water. You could use a water boiler or a teapot, but honestly a microwave is the best. The water shouldn’t boil, just warm.
Mix in sugar and then the yeast. Yeast can be tricky. Make sure to use the quick rise yeast, otherwise it will take a lot longer.
Let the yeast mixture sit for 5 to 10 minutes, waiting for the top to get foamy. It sounds weird, but it does in fact get foamy.
Slowly pour in the flour. Knead the dough using hands because utensils stick to the dough, creating a mess.
If the dough continues to feel sticky after the three cups of flour, add more flour. Before starting to form the pretzels, knead in salt.
Take small pieces of dough and turn it into snakes. Pretend it’s Play-Doh by rolling it on a counter or just in the air between hands.
From there, make the classic pretzel shape. I personally like to slap the dough snake on the counter to solidify the shape before wrapping it.
Use a little water to seal the ends of the pretzel and the middle.
Add an egg wash to the top of the pretzel, making sure as much of it is covered. Sprinkle salt on the top as the finishing touch.
Put the pretzels in the oven for 7 to 10 minutes, and pull them out of the oven once golden brown.
While I am no professional pretzel maker, I do enjoy twisting them — even better, though, is eating them.