Wednesday, February 20, 2013

auntie anna's pretzels.

i went to the mall a couple weekends ago and decided i needed to make some pretzels.
so i did.
the recipe is pretty easy.


1 1/2 cups warm water
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons salt
1 package yeast
4 cups flour
4 tablespoons melted butter

10 cups water
2/3 cup baking soda

1 egg yolk
1 tablespoon water
coarse salt (if you don't have it, you can use the regular kind but it's pretty cheap and worth the investment!)


pour 1 1/2 cups of warm water into a bowl. add 1 tablespoon of sugar and 2 teaspoons of salt and stir it all up. then add 1 package (or 2 1/4 teaspoons) of yeast into the mix and let it sit for about 5 minutes until it gets kind of foamy. 

then add about 4 cups of flour and 4 tablespoons of melted butter (1/2 stick). mix it in little by little. if you have a dough hook, you can use that. otherwise just do it by hand (like i do). keep kneading it until it's all good and mixed together. this part should take a few minutes.

roll the dough into a ball, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let it rise for about an hour.

now's a good time to preheat the oven: 450 degrees...or 400 if your oven is super-hot like mine. you can also get your cookie sheets ready. you'll probably need two (or just bake one batch at a time) so line them with parchment paper.

also bring 10 cups of water to a boil and add 2/3 cup of baking soda. 

while that's working, roll your pretzel dough into pretzel-like shapes. you should be able to make 8 medium sized pretzels or more smaller ones. when those are ready, put each pretzel in the boiling water for 30 seconds -- one at a time. that's what gives it the nice coating when it bakes.

after they get their baking soda bath, put the pretzels on the parchment paper-lined cookie sheet and brush them with a mixture of 1 egg yolk and 1 tablespoon water. add coarse salt on top. 

bake them for 12-14 minutes (or 10 if your oven is super-hot like mine).

and voila. homemade pretzels ( :

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

i am getting so old.

can you believe i'm 26?
i can't. ugh.
luckily i have cool people who made me feel extra-special
instead of just extra-old.

it started with a few of my coworkers.
one of them made me lemon raspberry cupcakes -- 
another one baked me some cookies but i already ate them and forgot to take a picture.

then i got some fruit from ruth!
(i put it in the fridge and another one of my coworkers dropped it on the floor and broke the handle -- you can see a little bit below)
but mostly it had this awesome chocolate pineapple bunny -- 
then a flower bouquet from m+d+d -- 
 and some awesome bday texts (and a midnight call) from surrah -- 
 i watched some 24 with sean, played some games -- 
 ...and dustin may have made this in honor of my birthday.
still not sure about that one. 
anyway i'm getting pretty old but i'm not dead yet.

Monday, February 18, 2013

crock pot creations.

m&d were kind enough to get me a crock pot for christmas.
so i started using it and it is awesome.
(thanks guys!)

my first dish was spare ribs with carrots and red potatoes -- 
i coated the ribs in flour, browned them and popped them in the slow cooker. then i added carrots, potatoes, chopped onions and some beef broth and let it cook on low for ten hours. 
it was so tender, the meat literally fell off the bones. YUM.

then today i made chili.
browned the ground turkey --
 sauteed the veggies (two green peppers and one onion) -- 
 and threw it all together in the pot with two cans of dark red kidney beans, a packet of chili mix, an extra tablespoon each of chili powder and paprika and some tomato juice. cooked on low for eight hours and it was yummy.
oh and also i got my hair cut.