Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Portland Pretzels Has Moved!

Not to fret! I am still eating and blogging about pretzels - but I have upgraded my site. Please check out to continue following me on my pretzel-eating adventure!

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

The Big Apple has Big Pretzels!

The Cronut - Dominique Ansel
New York City (NYC) might have Dominque Ansel's Cronut, not to mention a plethora of other yummy cuisine, but as an avid pretzel lover I had to see how the city’s pretzels stacked up against those in Portland. It turns out that Houston Hall, a massive beer hall in NYC’s West Village, has a tasty (and massive) Soft Bavarian pretzel!

Houston Hall Giant Warm Pretzel

Alex Tucker eats a pretzel
While traveling for work, I was able to soak up some of the city and fortunately for me, Matt's friend Alex lives close by so I was able to meet up with him for some pretzel eating and site-seeing. When we got to Houston Hall, we ordered one Giant Warm Pretzel and then had to order a second one because I overlooked that for a little extra money ($2) they also had some Cheddar ale dipping sauce. It was delicious and well worth every bite and the extra pretzel!

We walked off the pretzel(s) - oh and meat & cheese plate - on our way to see the Flat Iron Building, which is easily my favorite building in America. While I should have been full from all of our pretzel eating and beer drinking, I couldn't pass up the chance to eat at Shake Shack in Madison Square Park. Their squished, juicy little burgers were so savory and they let us wait to get our frozen custard shakes until we were done eating our burgers! 

Contrary to what it might seem I didn't just eat my way through NYC, but as a lover of food I couldn't pass up the opportunity to truly taste what they big city had to offer!

Houston Hall Cheddar ale dip

Monday, February 3, 2014

I love making pretzels and I cannot Lye...

I got Andrea Slonecker's cook book "Pretzel Making at Home" for Christmas and my boyfriend (Matt) and I decided SuperBowl Sunday would give us the perfect excuse to try out our first recipe from the book! In case you didn't get enough food yesterday during the big game, read along and be on your way to a pretzel making adventure!


Baking Soda (in lieu of lye), flour, sea salt, Pilsner, unsalted butter, active dry yeast, brown sugar (instead of barley malt syrup), a mixer (with a dough hook), cookie sheets, parchment paper, egg, water, Kosher salt!

Step 2: Put active dry yeast (one 1/4 oz) in warm water. Add brown sugar, butter, sea salt, flour..

and beer - we used Pilsner Urquell

Get dough hook for the stand mixer!

Stand back and let the magic happen (until dough is elastic - about 7 minutes).  We used about a cup of water to help make the dough less dry, a little more than the recipe recommends. 

Once it's fermented, knead it out a bit, grease the bowl with butter, put the dough back in and refrigerate!

Andrea recommends letting the dough rise in the refrigerator for 24 hours, so we stuck to that (more or less). At the same time we baked baking soda for about 1 hour at 250 degrees. This will eventually be combined with water to dip the pretzels in before baking!

The following day...we kneaded out the dough, and were able to yield 16 TWISTS!


Once we twisted them into shape (my favorite part), we then dipped each of them in the simmering hot water/baking soda solution for about 20 seconds. Note: in some cases the bread is actually boiled, which I think I might try next time just to see the difference in the pretzel.

Then we brushed egg yolk + water on the pretzels, sprinkled with Kosher salt and popped them into the oven for about 8-11 minutes. 


I must say, they turned out quite spectacular - just the right amount of salt, thickness and softness - and our friends would agree. Nothing like pretzels for #SuperBowl Sunday!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

The Happiest Place on Earth...just got a little saltier!

Happy 2014 Pretzel Lovers!
My boyfriend's parents recently took a trip to Disneyland and found chocolate dipped pretzel-rods, which naturally inspired me to write a blog post. Not only did it look delicious, but after one bite I was hooked because it was filled with caramel.
It tasted the way you hope a Twix bar tastes each time you decide to indulge in one, but arguably better. Maybe there should be a "pretzel-inspired" Twix bar? The pretzel M&M's were a hit (well at least in my world). If anyone from Mars is reading this, I will allow you to steal my idea, but only if I get a few free Twix-pretzels in the mail?! I also accept pretzel M&M's!
A girl can dream, right?

I guess in 2014 I just might have to do a little traveling to Disneyland myself and you can bet that I will be in search of pretzels (along with all my favorite Disney characters, of course).