Landisian Hot Pretzels

Basch fon Ronsenburg“Our paths keep crossing, yours and mine. It’s more than coincidence.”

—Basch fon Ronsenburg, FFXII

If you can’t get Maldon salt, you can substitute sea salt, but it’s worth making an effort to find Maldon salt — the texture is perfect for this recipe, and you’ll find that you end up wanting to use it for all kinds of other recipes.

  • 1 16-oz. ball of pizza dough
  • ½ cup baking soda
  • 1 large egg beaten with 1 tablespoon of water
  • A handful of Maldon salt
  • Bowls of hot mustard and spicy cheese dip, for serving

Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and let rise for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and butter the paper.

Punch down the dough, knead lightly, flatten, and cut into strips. Roll each strip until about ½” thick, then transfer to the prepared cookie sheet. If you’re feeling ambitious, you can cross the ends into a traditional pretzel shape; or leave them as sticks — they taste just as good that way, and it’s a lot easier! Leave at least 2″ of space between pretzels and let stand uncovered until puffed, about 20 more minutes.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. In a large, deep skillet, stir the baking soda into 5 cups of water and bring to a simmer over high heat. Spread paper towels on the countertop. Reduce heat to medium and carefully transfer the pretzels into the simmering water. Boil for about 15 seconds on each side, then transfer to paper towels using a slotted spoon. Return pretzels to the baking sheet, spacing them evenly.

Brush pretzels with egg wash and sprinkle with salt. Bake until richly browned, about 10 minutes. Serve immediately with a tankard of strong ale like Stone’s Cali-Belgique IPA or Green Flash’s Saison Diego. The pretzels can be stored overnight in a plastic bag at room temperature.