So many of the treats that I look forward to making at Christmas are sweet – cookies, fudge, cinnamon buns… so I wanted to toss a savoury option out there!
These are classic soft pretzels, with a to-die-for honey mustard dipping sauce, but with a holiday twist (literally!).
The recipe below is for classic pretzels, but I would argue that getting the candy shape shape is actually easier!
The only extra step is dying the dough – but that’s fairly straightforward. The food colouring won’t fully mix into the dough, which is fine! It creates more of a marbled effect that I think looks amazing. If you wanted a full-out red, I would recommend making two batches of dough from the jump and dying the milk red. However, as the pretzels bake they turn a beautiful golden brown colour anyways, so to me it’s not worth the extra effort.
Here is a video showing all the steps, including how to shape the candy cane twists. The steps are as follows:
- Once at step 6 of the recipe below, instead of diving the dough into 6 portions, divide it into only 2. Add 2-4 drops of red food colouring to one portion, kneading until the dye is evenly distributed.
- Divide each of the two halves of dough into 6 equal portions. Roll each portion into long, skinny snakes.
- Take one plain snake and one red snake, attach them at one end, and twist them together. Bend one end of the twist 180 degrees to form a candy cane shape.
- Follow steps 7-9 of the recipe below as usual.
Soft Pretzels with Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce
- 1 cup milk warm
- 2¼ tsp yeast
- 1 tsp white sugar
- 2 tbsp butter melted
- 2 tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- 2½ cups flour plus more, as needed
- 3 tbsp baking soda
- 2 cups water hot
- 1 tbsp butter melted
- chunky sea salt for sprinkling, to taste
- 3 tbsp mayonnaise
- 3 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 3 tbsp honey
- 2 tsp yellow mustard
- Whisk yeast and white sugar into warm milk, and let stand for 10 minutes. Yeast should activate and mixture should be bubbly.
- Using the dough attachment on a stand mixer (or by hand), mix in brown sugar, melted butter, salt, and about half of the flour.
- Add remaining flour slowly, allowing it to fully combine before adding more. You may need to add more than the 2½ cups if the dough is too sticky. It should form a smooth dough that pulls away from the sides of the bowl.
- Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a clean towel, and let rest in a warm place for about an hour.
- After the dough has risen and doubled in size, preheat the oven to 450°.
- On a floured surface, divide the dough into 6 equal portions. Roll each one into a long rope, twisting to form a pretzel shape. You want these to be thin – they will rise as they bake.
- Mix hot water and baking soda together. Dunk each pretzel twist into the baking soda bath before placing on baking sheets lined with parchment paper or silicone mats.
- Bake 8-10 minutes, until golden brown.
- Brush the pretzels with melted butter and sprinkle with sea salt.
- Whisk all ingredients together until smooth.