I’m a supernerd – I’m so excited about these silly soft pretzels shaped like candy canes! The challenge was that Scarlet’s preschool was having a holiday party, but I waited too long to sign up for what I would bring and everything was already taken. So her teacher asked me to just bring some sort of non-sweet munchie. Hmm. Then it hit me! Soft pretzel candy canes!
I found the recipe from my fave kiddie cooking site written by my friend Rebecca: Cooking With My Kid (Scarlet and her son Gus have already been found in bed together, sigh). She has so many fun kid-friendly holiday recipes right now, like her Easy Gingerbread House, Holiday Granola, Sparkly Pomegranate Cranberries, and Cinnamon Sugar Popcorn.
My kid was already in bed, but I did do some Cooking With My Husband which was really fun, he helped roll out the candy canes. I think these would make an awesome hostess gift or appetizer for a holiday party! A sweet version with cinnamon sugar could be dipped in a little glaze to look like snow maybe? These were not difficult to make at all, and they were insanely delicious!
Get the Pretzel Candy Cane recipe after the jump…
Tell us what kind of fun holiday treats you are planning on concocting this week in the comments, you could win some of those pretty Jacinda-made snowflakes pictured on the left!
Pretzel Candy Canes
This soft pretzel recipe is from Cooking With My Kid, which she adapted from Alton Brown.
1 1/2 cups warm water
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 package active dry yeast
4 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 ounces unsalted butter, melted
10 cups water
2/3 cup baking soda
1 large egg yolk beaten with 1 tablespoon water
Combine the water, sugar and kosher salt in the bowl of a stand mixer and sprinkle the yeast on top. Allow to sit for 5 minutes or until the mixture begins to foam. Add the flour and butter and, using the dough hook attachment, mix on low speed until well combined. Change to medium speed and knead until the dough is smooth and pulls away from the side of the bowl, approximately 4 to 5 minutes. Remove the dough from the bowl, clean the bowl and then oil it well with vegetable oil. Return the dough to the bowl, cover with plastic wrap and sit in a warm place for approximately 50 to 55 minutes or until the dough has doubled in size.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Line 2 half-sheet pans with parchment paper and lightly brush with the vegetable oil. Set aside.
Bring the 10 cups of water and the baking soda to a rolling boil in an 8-quart saucepan or roasting pan.
In the meantime, turn the dough out onto a slightly oiled work surface and divide into 8 equal pieces. Roll out each piece of dough into a 24-inch rope.
Here’s where we change it up.
Cut each rope into three equal pieces. Shape into candy canes. They don’t stay put super well so give them a little pinch at the top and get to boiling pretty quickly. Place onto the parchment-lined half sheet pan.
Place the pretzels into the boiling water, for 30 seconds. She recommends doing it one by one, but since these were small and my pan was big, I dumped them in in two batches.
Remove them from the water using one of those flat spoon-like things with holes in it (what are those called) so the water can drain. Return to the half sheet pan, brush the top of each pretzel with the beaten egg yolk and water mixture and sprinkle with the pretzel salt. Bake until dark golden brown in color, approximately 12 to 14 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack for at least 5 minutes before serving.
Package them up cute! These were awesome fresh but still super yummy the next day. I thought about adding red food coloring but decided it might look too confusing and therefore unappealing. Also thought about coloring the salt red, but then I remembered this was for a class of two-year-olds, not the martha stewart show, and I let it be as is.