Nothing warms my heart or my cold apartment more than baked bread on a weekend afternoon. I generally eat as healthy as possible during weekdays, but on weekends I adopt a Vegas-policy, "what's consumed on weekends, stays on weekends."
Last summer I got married so was avoiding eating carbs leading up to the day. Temptation was rampant & these trendy pretzel baguettes were popping up everywhere like a Ouija board you swear you threw out.
As soon as the wedding was over & I was eating carbs making up for lost time, suddenly I couldn't find these things anywhere! Anyways, I realized it was a life lesson. I wasn't going to wait for life to present these to me again. I'll just make them myself & then I can salt them to my heart's content.
1 C 2% milk
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 envelope of traditional yeast (or 2 1/4 tsp of traditional yeast)
2 tsp salt
2 1/2 C All Purpose flour
BOILING SOLUTION INGREDIENTS:
3 Quarts water
2 tbsp baking soda
3 tbsp brown sugar
EGG WASH INGREDIENTS:
1 tbsp water
1. Melt butter & heat milk in a pot to whatever temperature your yeast suggests. For traditional, 35-45 F.
2. Combine brown sugar, yeast and milk mixture in a stand mixer. Stir in 2 C of flour & beat for 3-4 minutes on medium speed.
3. Add spoonfuls of flour until a soft dough forms.
4. Preheat oven at 200. Knead on a floured surface until smooth & elastic, about 5-7 minutes.
5. Place in a greased bowl in the heated, but now turned off oven. Let it rise, let it rise (imagine Idina Menzel singing this). Remove from oven.
6. Preheat oven to 400 now. Prepare boiled solution with sugar & baking soda. Roll out each into desired baguette shape & boil in solution for two minutes, flipping halfway.
7. Cut each roll in a crisscross pattern. Brush egg wash on each & top with flaky salt. Bake each for 15 minutes, then turn down heat to 350. Bake for additional 12 more minutes.