Now, I have nothing against whole wheat made by other people. In fact, I prefer it because it’s so much healthier. But when it comes to my own baking, it leaves me completely stumped because it’s so dense. I just cannot, CANNOT make it work, even when making specifically whole wheat recipes. Bread becomes a brick. Cookies become hockey pucks. Pancakes become frisbees.
Until the other day.
I have a grocery list. I wrote on that list: ‘flour’. I brought the list with me to the store. I saw the tag – flour was on sale! YES! I brought said flour home, and it sat on the shelf until I went to make these delicious Pretzel Rolls from Fabulessly Frugal, a recipe I’ve made several times before.
Opened the package.
Dipped in my measuring cup.
Poured it in the bowl.
It wasn’t until that moment that I noticed one important thing. WHOLE. WHEAT FLOUR.
I took a deep breath, and decided today was the day. Today was the day I was continuing my kitchen crusade against the things that intimidate me, and gosh darn it all, I was going to make this work! After some quick googling for recipe adjustments, I charged into the breach. I went to the dark side, and man oh man, I do NOT regret it.
It was a miracle! These pretzel rolls came out chewy but not dense, and remarkably pretzel-y! Victory is MINE! And of course, I have to share with you!
The first thing we need to do is get our yeast hopping (ha.ha.), so mix that and some brown sugar in a bowl. Add the oil and 1 cup of the water.
Place it on a floured surface and knead it for 3-4 minutes. You should be able to feel the elasticity of the dough change a bit as you go.
Divide the dough in 12 balls and place them on a foil covered sheet to rise for about 20-30 minutes.
Measure about 6 cups of water to a large pot, stirring in the baking soda. Bring it to a boil. This is what’s going to give your pretzel rolls that gorgeous ‘pretzel’ sheen and texture on the outside, while the inside is soft and light.
Place the rolls in the water for about 1 minute on each side, then set them aside to drain.
Pat them dry if you have too, you want them to be dry, TRUST ME. I have screwed up this recipe a few times in the beginning and you do not want soggy rolls. Gross.
These are incredible. Fluffy on the inside, chewy on the outside, the perfect pretzel roll.
- 1 cup warm water
- 3 tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- ¼ cup oil (canola works well)
- 2 ¼ cups whole wheat flour (or 3 cups bread flour for the non-whole wheat alternative)
- 1 tbsp yeast (OR 2 packages will do the trick)
- 6 cups water
- 3 tbsp baking soda
- dash kosher or sea salt for each roll
- egg white or butter wash
Mix brown sugar and yeast in a bowl, add oil and 1 cup warm water. Let it sit for a couple minutes, until the yeast becomes frothy.
Add salt and flour to the yeast mixture and mix. The dough should NOT be sticky. If it is, add a little more flour.
Knead the dough for 3-4 minutes. You should feel it become more elastic.
Divide the dough into 12 balls, and let rise on a foil covered sheet for 20-30 minutes.
Bring 6 cups of water and the baking soda to a simmer in a large pot.
Preheat the oven to 375°.
Place rolls in the water, 1 minute on each side.
Drain and pat dry, and place on a cookie sheet. (Be careful! They will be HOT!)
Brush rolls with egg white or butter wash, and sprinkle with kosher or sea salt.
Slash on the top.
Bake for 12-15 minutes, let cool for at least 5 minutes.
Serve with soup or as a sandwich. Enjoy!