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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Vegan MoFo in NYC, Day 17: Pretzels

Ugh! This post is disappointing. Unfortunately MoFo demands that we forge ahead no matter what has come out of the day's work.
So, I tried to make pretzels - you know, the NYC street food that appears on every corner of every block. The filling and delicious but nowhere near healthy, salty, perfect snack to keep you running for a few more hours. Well, I failed miserably!
I used this recipe and, while they tasted okay, they were certainly not the crusted, sort of stale, rubbery to eat pretzels I've oddly come to love.


These were thyme-touched, soft, fluffy, light little dough bites. Ugh! They didn't even brown, so they looked like palid, flaccid, little yeasty dummies. They are also annoying to roll out and fold. These aren't pretzels.


I did use all-purpose flour rather than whole wheat...maybe that made a difference. Anyway, I really want to keep trying! This is like, my white whale of this month's MoFoing so far. Ditch the thyme, brush with soy milk and lemon rather than olive oil and lemon juice, and use a heartier flour. Also, make them smaller. Those are the tips I'll incorporate next time, and then we'll see what's up.


Eat with mustard. That helps everything.

30 comments:

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    1. Is that like girth vs. length? No one wins.

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  2. Ha ha! The sexual innuendos are flying around my mind. Absolutely hilarious description of the pretzel creation! :) "These aren't pretzels"! Ha! They certainly look better than anything I could ever create. I applaud you for your effort and the great post!

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    1. Pop quiz: what sucks? These pretzels :(

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  3. So you may not know this but soft pretzels are one of my all time favorite foods and I was hoping you would recreate them :) They may not be the pretzels of your dreams but the effort is definitely appreciated and the experience will only help you achieve those perfect pretzels. And when you do achieve them I will be so overcome with jealousy :) Nice try!!

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    1. I like them too, oddly enough! You would probably do a much better job, haha.

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  4. I know the MoFo at all costs feeling ... and now I want pretzels.

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  5. It's too bad the pretzels didn't turn out the way you'd hoped they would (love the description of everything, though). Although I do enjoy soft, fluffy bread, I agree that pretzels should be crusty and chewy. Try boiling the shaped dough in water with a little baking soda, for maybe 30 seconds each pretzel, just before baking; it gives them a chewy texture after they've baked. Also, baking them at a high heat--I usually go for 450F--makes them brown and crusty. (Sorry, I don't mean to show myself as some pretzel expert, but I've used this method many times and it works pretty well.) I hope your next round of pretzel-making turns out more to your liking!

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    1. thank you for the tips! As far as I'm concerned, you are premire vegan baker! Hopefully an update will follow.

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  6. Those remind me of some pretzels my kids ordered at a restaurant recently. And they were very good. I mean, I'm of the mindset that you can't go wrong with cooked dough. Give me some cooked dough. I'll eat it.

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  7. Sorry the pretzels didn't work out! It's always disappointing to spend a lot of time in the kitchen and not have it work out. Have you made the pretzels from Joy of Vegan Baking? I had good luck with that one!

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    1. Yeah! Freakin' waitin' for an hour and a half for bum dough that you just have to scrub off the cutting board; ugh! I'll look at the JoVB recipe, though! Thank you!

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  8. Oh, I am sadfaced about the pretzel fail! But you can't win em all, I guess. And I agree with your mustard sentiments. Hopefully they're at least edible, if not what you were hoping for!

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    1. I'm just gonna drink mustard shots tonight to make me feel better.

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  9. "palid, flaccid, little yeasty dummies"? I take it back, this might be my favorite post! Really, you're outdoing yourself in every department: effort, information, and entertainment; I love it!

    I too tried to make pretzels once. Let's just say yours look better. Solid effort.

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    1. Haha, but you seem to be having more fun and natural strolling around New York. I should leave NY to the pros (you.)
      I would like to see pretzels sadder than these.

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  10. This is the second post in a row I've read tonight about cooking failures. (Read Kittee's — it's very funny.) Yeasted dough is such an investment of time it sucks when it doesn't turn out right, but there's some weird quality about street pretzels that hard to capture.

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    1. I just read Kittee's post! Ha! misery certainly loves company. I think maybe the key to a good NY pretzel is actually the layer of grime and taxi exhaust in the air that forms a chewy layer around the pretzel itself. It's hard to recreate in a kitchen.

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  11. Pale pretzels make me so sad!!! I think you should try a different recipe because that one seems faulty. But, you are right, mustard is like duct tape, it fixes almost everything!

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    1. Yes, although last time I tried to wrap pretzel dough around my broken glasses it didn't help much...

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  12. If at first you don't succeed, smother everything with mustard?!

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  13. :( Poor flaccid pretzels! I haven't had much luck with making good pretzels either. Guess one of us just needs to find the perfect recipe and disseminate!

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    1. Yeah, somebody (else) get on that...

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  14. Well, chalk it up to a learning experience! A for effort! I must say, thyme-touched sounds nice though.

    Did you put them in boiling water and baking soda for a few seconds before baking? I think that's an essential step in both pretzels and bagels, to form the chewy crust.

    Agreed that mustard makes anything better.

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    1. There was no baking soda involved with these but that makes sense. At least, the boiling. Next time!

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  15. There are a lot of twisted comments here bhahaha. OH man, I hate when that crap happens. Have you seen my crazy boy's recipe for pretzel crosses. they came out good we did alot of dipping.
    My friend got fired from a pretzel factory.
    He tried to straighten things out.

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    1. "Twisted!" I like! Hahah, I did see those pretzel crosses; they looked fun.

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