The other day I was in the mood for some savory baked goods, so I perused the "Crackers and Savory Cookies" chapter of Nick Malgieri's Cookies Unlimited. The large photo of the "Viennese Caraway Pretzels" immediately caught my eye. I quickly surveyed our spice shelf, and since we had a bottle of caraway seeds on hand, I decided to give them a try.
The pretzel dough contains only a few ingredients, which you mix together in the food processor: flour, salt, cold butter, and yeast that has been dissolved in water. After the dough comes together into a ball, you knead it a few times and let it rest for 30 minutes, "until it puffs slightly." After 30 minutes, the ball of dough wasn't exactly puffy -- the texture appeared to be almost the same, but I could tell that it was slightly larger, so I decided to run with it. You flatten the dough into a rectangle and chill it for at least an hour. Then you divide the dough into 36 pieces, each of which you roll into an 8-inch rope and form in the pretzel shape. You brush the pretzels with egg wash and sprinkle them with caraway seeds and coarse salt before baking.
Recipe: "Viennese Caraway Pretzels," from Cookies Unlimited, by Nick Malgieri.