The Great Pretzel Roll Experiment

Food

Shaping and rising pretzel rolls

Every time I turn the television on these days there’s another advertisement for a fast food or chain restaurant for their new sandwiches on pretzel rolls. Everywhere it’s pretzel rolls, pretzel rolls, pretzel rolls. Where did this trend come from? I decided to take a stab at the pretzel roll using my favorite soft pretzel recipe and a couple different shaping techniques.

I used two different techniques for shaping. One is the Kaiser roll technique. As you would to shape a Kaiser roll, you roll the dough into a rope then knot it. The other technique I used was the boule. You start with a round piece of dough and pull the dough to the bottom in order to create tension along the top and sides of the round piece of dough. I also tried making the trademark X-shape on the top of some of the boule-shaped pretzel rolls but I wasn’t satisfied with the results.

Overall, I like the Kaiser-shaped pretzel rolls better. It gave the dough a chance to really pull apart like you’d see on a standard pretzel. Plus it looks more interesting. It’s not just a round piece of bread. And, of course, all are topped with coarse pretzel salt.

I made my rolls roughly 4 to 5 ounces each. This is like a large dinner roll. For a roll that’s large enough for a burger, I’d suggest going 5 to 6 ounces.

Pretzel Rolls: Boule shape

Pretzel Rolls: Kaiser shape

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