Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Occupy Pretzels!

I don't even know what that means.  It just felt right.  Part of my nagging urge to appear to be with the times.  Google will probably un-index me for keyword stuffing, but I don't need them... *looks over shoulder fearfully*.

Pretzels dough is really what's cool.  It's where it's at.  All these people protesting the theft of the American soul by corporate and banking giants don't know what they're talking about.  Just have a delicious pretzel, and it'll all be good.

For some reason, this Ass-Clown showed up in a Google image search for Occupy Wall Street:

No Pretzels for you, Ass-Clown!!!

Anyhow, I am proud to announce another successful food item!  Introducing....THE SORTA LIKE A CALZONE BUT WITH BEEF AND ONION NOT CHEESE AND TOMATO, AND NOT A PIEROGI EITHER!!!!  YESSSS!!!

Really, it more like the Russian Pirozhki, but with pretzel dough, and let me tell you, they are fantastic.  Alter-Ego and I used to eat them as children, but they were the frozen kind, and although salty and delicious, just not nearly as good as these.  Recipe?  Ground beef, onion, garlic, paprika, salt and pepper all sauteed together.  Just roll your pretzel dough out into a 10-12 in circle, put some filling in the middle, fold one half over the other like a calzone, and pinch the edges together tightly.  Follow the rest of the steps for normal pretzels (boil and bake).

That's all she wrote!  I swear I'll get a better basic pretzel recipe up one of these days....

Monday, August 29, 2011

Jackpot !

Hell yes, we have succeeded.  We have actually created something resembling good tasting pretzel dough.  Introducing:

Yes, this really happened!
The first ever Pretzel Pot Pie!  Part of a determined effort by The Pretzel King to bring pretzels to a whole new level of sophistication for the more discerning pretzel eater.  Yum!  This was a fun process and the result was fantastic.

Pretzel Pot Pie
This is the filling for Pretzel Pot Pie.  Here is a secret:  there are no pretzels in it.  It's really just homemade Chicken Pot Pie filling that I don't have a recipe for.  Besides, we're focused on pretzels here, not chicken pot pie filling.  Any recipe you like will work, but mine is delicious. And you can't have it.

Sweet Mixer
Action Shot
Perfectly Rolled Dough

It took me more time to align these photos than it did to make the actual Pretzel Pot Pie.  Blogger is weird about some things I guess, so I had to create a table in the HTML code and put the photos in there.  Anyone know of an easier way?  I do have a penchant for overlooking the obvious.

The actual dough is the same recipe we used the first time, except we fixed the salt problem.  Still not sure what went wrong the first time, but it was way better this time around, and we even saved a little bit for an experiment I'll get to in a bit.  Here is the finished product prior to baking:
The PK does not stand for Penalty Kick oddly enough.  That wouldn't make any sense at all.  It stands for Pretzel King

 Oven Pre-heated, and ready to roll. Time for shots.
These are not shot glasses, they are Turkish tea glasses.  Very fancy.
The Pretzel Pot Pie sat in the oven at 375 degrees until it browned, about 20 minutes or so.  I can't really remember exactly, but it came out perfectly done.  We removed the P and K and salted them with pretzel salt, and ate them like you would a standard pretzel.  Delicious.
PK pretzels with parsley garnish.  Hint: don't eat the parsley.
It was nice to finally have a successful recipe, but I'm not sure what we're going to do next.  How can you possibly top Pretzel Pot Pie?  Maybe a pretzel dessert of some kind?  We'll have to wait and see.

Oh, I forgot to tell you what we did with the extra pretzel dough.  Really not that exciting, but I wanted to see what happened if we froze the dough.   I'll do a short post later when we decide to thaw it and  have a pretzel snack.


Wednesday, August 17, 2011

My Alter Ego

Super-rare photo of my alter ego. Priceless. Not sure how he eats pretzels, but whatever.

Death of the Pretzel, or Story of the The Pretzel King's Transformation

So, we have utterly failed in our first attempt at pretzel making....to be expected I guess, but disheartening nonetheless. No one said this wouldn't be a learning process, but wow these pretzels were just atrocious.

But I digress. We wanted to document our foray into the pretzel world, and how The Pretzel King came into existence. It went something like this:

(Before/After shocking footage)

Let it suffice to say this was a grueling transformation, and I now know the pain The Hulk goes through. I swear.

On to the pretzel making...We found a recipe online that seemed basic enough. No frills. We followed it to the letter (I think), and it really seemed as if everything was going well. And we got to use our stand-up mixer, which is really cool if you like that kind of thing. Which we do.

Oh by the way, I just realized I have been using "we" quite often. The Pretzel King has an alter ego that helps him navigate pretzel making. More on this later.

Here is photographic evidence of the first pretzel failure:

The last photo is clear evidence we are using the wrong attachment for the mixer. Shit happens, so we made a command decision to change it out NASCAR-style, and use a proper dough hook:

Yes, The Pretzel King sticks his fingers in stuff. Deal with it.

The dough hook worked much better, and we really were quite pleased with the result. Things really seemed like they were looking good, and so The King put the dough in some bags with some flour to let it rise for a bit:

The Pretzel King looking quite pleased with his delicious pretzel dough balls.

So 30 minutes to fill...what better way than get after some Sangria:

Not sure if the Sangria contributed to the defunct pretzels, but it could have been a mitigating factor. I blame it on his alter-ego :)

So the final steps went well too. We rolled the dough out, formed them into classic pretzel shapes, and gave them a bath in boiling water + butter. Lo and behold, they looked like real pretzels:

Delicious, right?

So we baked them. I don't remember how long, but I swear we followed the recipe. They came out looking pretty normal. Kind of splotchy, but just like real pretzels. And who doesn't love a delicious warm pretzel right out of the oven?

The pretzels tasted like hell. Some kind of salt malfunction. The Pretzel King and his alter-ego both choked some down, mostly because we felt like we had to, but my God this was the worst tasting pretzel ever. Period. Try chewing on a salt lick sometime if you want to recreate the experience. Horrible.

Alas, we will persevere. Check back in, as we intend to do some crazy things with pretzels, the most under-utilized bread form ever!