I had a spa day today. Not a bread-baking, toe-nail-painting at-home-spa day, but a real spa day... at a real spa... with scented candles and "rain forest music". I had cups of green tea and people tending to my every need. I was anointed with expensive lotions and potions. And while all that was going on, I did what all ladies do at the spa, I read the gossip mags. I took a very good book with me, but it stayed in my basket while I read about what a mess Kloe Kardashians life is and compared photos of Meg Ryan before and after her startling face job. As I flipped through the pages of starlets and stars, I happened upon an interview with an Australian female celeb. She was asked what her beauty tips were. She was quoted as saying that she always adds a few drops of apple juice or a pinch of sugar to the bottles of water she sips on all day, because she was once told by a flight attendant that it helps to absorb the water (like I said, these are her words, not mine). She said that she has learned to accept her "wobbly bits" (puh lease!!), and that she does yoga twice a week. She said yoga and I immediately thought pretzels. Does anyone else have this problem?
Fat Pretzels with Steak Seasoning
adapted from Food Network
1 tablespoon caster sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons dry active yeast
3 1/2 cups plain flour
1 tablespoon fine salt
1 egg, lightly beaten
Your favourite steak seasoning for sprinkling
1 heaped tablespoon of bicarbonate of soda for the boiling water/pretzel spa.
Stir the sugar, yeast and 1 1/2 cups lukewarm water in a bowl and set it aside for 5 minutes, until they are foamy.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook, place the flour and slat and give them a quick stir just to combined. Add the yeast mixture and mix on low speed for about 8 minutes. Add more flour or water of the dough seems too wet or dry. It should be a little sticky and moist.
Pop the dough into a large, lightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Set aside in warm place for about 45 minutes for it to double in size.
Turn the dough out to a work surface and cut it into 8 equal portions. Roll each portion out into a long log shape and twist it into a pretzel. Put them on a oiled baking tray as you complete each one.
Let the pretzels rest again for 20 minutes and preheat the oven to 210 degrees C.
Bring a large pan of water to the boil. Once boiling, add 1 heaped tablespoon of bicarbonate of soda.