Tasty Tuesday: Saboteur Extraordinaire!

Tasty Tuesday

My general rule of thumb...Wait, Quick sidenote: did you know the history of that saying??  Terrible!

Anyway, general rule is that I don't bring major tempations into my home when I am trying to moderate my caloric intake.  In a family as large as mine, we celebrate a lot so I don't need lots of sweets in my house.  I'll get them soon enough.

I had a terrible time avoiding Leo's potty-training treats.  Now that they are gone, I'm just keeping the basics around.  No more snack foods!!

Then Jason volunteered to head out to Costco and pick up our necessities.  I love when he volunteers to go to the store.  However, he is not a "seasoned" shopper so he often comes home with the sugar-free chocolate syrup, or fat-free sour cream or the *gasp* caffeine free?!  He just doesn't stand for a long time and read labels.  I told him very specifically: Make sure you read the label.  I want the 25 lb bag of regular flour, not bread flour!

He comes home with this...
50 lbs???????  It takes me a month or two to go through the massive 25 lb bag!!  And we just filled up our deep freeze with 1/4 cow so I have no way to store it. 

I'm going to have to get creative.  First up?  Buttery Soft Pretzals.  Yes - I am the saboteur extraordinaire.  These also go by the name of Diet Be Gone!!

When I was 19, I was attending community college and bored out of my mind!  I quit the restaurant/bar business to get enough sleep to not fail the semester.  I found a sweet job at a kiosk in the local mall advertising Comcast high-speed internet.  In those days of dial-up only, I had no clue what I was selling, but I faked it well enough to sign people up.  The job requirements were play on the high-speed internet all day and make it look fun.  DONE!  I survived off Auntie Anne's pretzals.  A bowl of cereal and a pretzal...every day...for 4 months.

With the discovery that I can make them in the comfort of my home, this 50 lb bag of flour might be put to good use after all!!  And this just may not be my year for dieting :)

Buttery Soft Pretzal

4 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 teaspoon white sugar
1 1/4 cups warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
5 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup white sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon vegetable oil or butter

1/2 cup baking soda
4 cups hot water
1/4 cup kosher salt, for topping

In a small bowl, dissolve yeast and 1 teaspoon sugar in warm water. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes. In a large bowl, mix together flour, 1/2 cup sugar, and salt. Make a well in the center; add the oil and yeast mixture. Mix and form into a dough. If the mixture is dry, add one or two tablespoons of water. Knead the dough until smooth, about 7 to 8 minutes. Lightly oil a large bowl, place the dough in the bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.  I learned a trick from City Wife, Country Life.  If you need a warm place to let your dough rise, set your oven to 200 degrees and let the heat kick on for 2 minutes (don't let it preheat all the way!).  Turn the oven off and place the dough in the warmed oven for as long as it takes to double in size!

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C). In a large bowl, dissolve baking soda in hot water.

Grab the dough out of the oven after it doubles in size.

When risen, turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface.

Kick yourself for asking your toddler to "help"...

Divide into 12 pieces and roll each piece into a rope and twist into a pretzel shape.

Our favorite saying in the house is "Leo/Elena (and occasionally) Jason - You need to ask yourself right now, are you helping? Or are you hindering?..."

Okay, now things get dicey.  You have about 30 seconds to roll each slice into a pretzal shape and get them on the pan before your 2.5 year old pokes a hole in each and every one.  1. 2. 3. GO!!!!!

Once all of the dough is all shaped, dip each pretzel into the baking soda solution and place on a greased baking sheet. Sprinkle with kosher salt.

Strategically take photos of your counter looking oh so clean...

That's the beautiful thing about blogging.  No one ever has to see the mess unless you actually post a picture.  For the sake of keeping it real: Here you go.

Bake in preheated oven for 8 minutes, until browned.

Pour some melted butter on them.

And give it a whirl!!

Do a little happy dance when it turns out as delicious as it smells!!!

I exercised self-control and only ate 2.  But there are still 9 of these in my house....


  1. Those look so good! I especially love the Auntie Ann's cinnamon and sugar ones! I think you could easily do that to these too

  2. What a great recipe - and what a cute post! Looks like you had fun!!

  3. That looks awesome! I love pretzels. I've always bought the huge box of frozen ones at BJ's but this is WAY yummier. I remember back in middle school when we made some in our culinary class - I never remembered how. This is awesome.


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