Initially, I wasn't that pleased with these pretzels, thinking that the outside should be more crispy and the centre less dense, but then Hannah, my daughter who went to Berlin twice last year, told me that they are just like the ones she bought there. My judgement had been based on ignorance of what they should be like.

Next time though, I think I'll leave them to rise for a short time after shaping, before boiling them. I'll also omit the egg yolk glaze and try out different toppings: poppy seed, sesame, celery seeds etc.



500gm flour
285gm water
1 teasp salt
20g oil or softened butter
1 packet 'instant' yeast
1 egg yolk for glaze
Coarse sea salt for topping
A pan of boiling water with 2 tablespoons of bicarbonate of soda to each 500mls water.

Use oil and omit the egg yolk for a vegan version.


Make a dough with the first five ingredients. Leave to rise until doubled in size. Put the bicarb' into the pan of boiling water and preheat oven to 200°C. Knock the dough back and cut into 8 pieces. Roll each piece into a rope shape about 20" (500mm) long. Shape into a pretzel and boil gently in the water for 30 seconds, then drain. Mix the egg yolk with a little water and brush the pretzel with it, then sprinkle with coarse grain salt. Bake in the oven until brown, about 10 - 12 minutes.

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