As you may know, Spoon staffers as U of M have been trying to take food-porn recipes from Pinterest and recreate them in their own college kitchens, photographing evidence along the way. Shout out to Pinterest Challenge Round 1: Mac and Cheese Pizza for the encouragement.
SoI took at a stab at it, and tried to recreate Pinterest’s epic Warm Chocolate Chip Cookie Stuffed Soft Pretzels.
Prep Time: 30 minutes, plus 1 hour for dough to rise
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 45 minutes
1 ½ cups warm water
2 tablespoons light brown sugar, packed
1 package active dry yeast (2 ¼ teaspoons)
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt or kosher salt
4 ½ to 5 cups all-purpose flour
1 egg, beaten
course sea salt, for sprinkling
1 package store-bought chocolate chip cookie dough
1. Make the pretzel dough. “Combine water, sugar, yeast, and melted butter in the bowl of a stand mixer and mix with the dough hook until combined”. Set aside for 5 minutes.
2. Add salt and 4 ½ cups flour to mixture and use spatula to mix until well incorporated.
3. Knead dough by hand for 3-4 minutes until dough begins to pull away from sides of bowl. Remove dough from bowl and knead into a ball.
Considering the fact that I am a college student who doesn’t exactly have a stand mixer or a dough hook handy, these steps are actually more complex than they sound. Time to improvise! I used a spatula to stir the wet ingredients together, and then my hands to knead the dough after adding the flour. Let me tell you, I didn’t miss that stand mixer for a second.
4. Coat a large bowl with canola oil and add the dough. Turn to coat with oil, then cover with plastic wrap and set aside for an hour until dough doubles in size.
5. After dough has expanded, remove from bowl and divide into eight equally sized balls.
6. Cookie time. Okay, I kind of skimped out on the whole make-your-own cookie dough step, but I already made pretzel dough, for crying out loud. College cop out: store-bought cookie dough.
7. Preheat oven to 425 ºF.
8. Roll dough ball into rectangle (11×3 inches). College again exposed itself here in the fact that I do not have a rolling pin. While I likely could have used a cup, I decided to just use my fists to spread the dough. Mine ended up being a little bigger than the desired size, but hey the bigger the better, right?
9. Spread cookie dough along the length of the rectangle and roll pretzel dough around it to enclose. Pinch the seams together and roll the pretzel/cookie dough log to fully enclose the toppings.
10. “Take the two ends of each rope and form into a circle that is overlapped by a couple of inches of dough on either side, twist the ends and lay over the opposite side to form a pretzel shape. Press the ends under the pretzel to seal”. Couldn’t have said it better myself. Or really at all, making pretzels is definitely not my strong suit.
11. Fill a large bowl with water and mix in two tablespoons of baking soda. Dunk each pretzel in water, then place on a baking sheet and brush with beaten egg.
12. Sprinkle with salt. And don’t go salt-happy as I did. A little goes a long way.
13. Bake for 15-18 minutes until pretzel is golden brown and cookie dough that has started to ooze out is golden brown.
14. Bask in the fruits of your labor and sit down with one of these and an ice cold glass of milk.
All in all, I can’t say that I’m upset with the results. These things were just as wonderful as the name made them sound (I mean really, how can you go wrong with warm cookie stuffed inside of a soft pretzel?) I even learned a thing or two in the process, like how to revive my brown sugar after it has become a brick, and that my hands are just as good as any old dough hook.
So if you’re dying to tackle one of those crazy Pinterest recipes, consider this one approved. It IS possible, and it IS delicious.