Smoky Spicy Pretzel Bites with Habanasco Queso DipNatasha Jebens
Photography by Vega DuPont
Let’s be honest for a moment, how much of a confidence booster is it when you bring an appetizer to a party or friendly get-together and yours is the first to be demolished by the guests? Well if you are looking for a recipe that will do just that, we’ve got you! Soft and fluffy pretzel bites with an incredible smoky flavor from our Smoked Chipotle Salt and served with a spicy Habanasco Queso Dip, because what doesn’t go well with a cheesy dip, right?
Everything about these pretzel bites are magic, including the recipe which only requires 6 ingredients, hardly any rise time, and can even be prepared ahead of time and just popped into the oven when needed. Luckily this recipe is so easy because we promise you, everyone is going to be begging for more!
PREP & COOK TIME:
30 mins prep time
15 mins cook time
187 per serving
1 ½ cups
Active Dry Yeast
2 ¼ tsp
3 ¾ cups
1 tsp or to taste
Room Temperature Milk
1 ¼ cup, Shredded
Habanasco Fermented Habanero Sauce
1 tbsp or to taste
- In a medium bowl whisk together warm water, yeast & brown sugar. Cover yeast mixture and let sit for 5 minutes. Add Smoked Chipotle Salt, melted butter and 3 cups of flour to your yeast mixture, mix for 1 minute (either with an electric mixer and dough hook attachment or with a wooden spoon) then add your last bit of flour and continue mixing for another 2 minutes.
- Knead your dough lightly by hand for an additional 2 minutes, cover lightly with a towel and let sit for 15-25 minutes
- Preheat your oven to 400°F OR 200°C, line 2 baking trays with baking sheets and set aside.
- Place dough on a very lightly floured board and cut into 6 equal-sized pieces, roll each piece of dough into 15-inch (40cm) snakes then cut your snake into 1.5-2-inch (3-5cm), bite-sized pieces.
- Baking Soda Bath: In a large pot, mix together your baking soda & water and bring to a boil. Place 5-10 of your bite-sized pieces into the boiling water and let sit for 10-15 seconds*, using a spoon lift bites out of the water and allow excess water to drop off. Place bites onto prepared baking trays, remove the grinder off the Smoked Chipotle Salt, and sprinkle the coarse salt over the top of pretzel bites. (Make sure to sprinkle salt while pretzel bites are still wet, this helps the salt stick!). Repeat the process with the rest of the pretzel bites.
- Place in the oven for 15 minutes OR until golden brown, and start working on your spicy queso dip.
- Create a roux by melting your butter on a low-to-medium heat and slowly sprinkle flour over the top while stirring constantly until a thick paste is formed.
- Add your milk to your flour roux, a tablespoon at a time, while continuing to stir constantly. Carry on stirring until mixture thickens (about 5 minutes), mixture should be thick but pourable.
- Add cheese and mix until melted, then add your Habanasco – Fermented Habanero Sauce and Smoked Chipotle Salt. Feeling brave? After tasting your queso, feel free to add more habanasco sauce if you please.
- The sauce will thicken upon cooling.
For the Pretzel Bites:
- When rolling your dough into snakes, if the dough keeps shrinking and rolling out becomes difficult, set dough aside for an additional 10 minutes to let the gluten relax. Then return rolling out your snakes.
- Be aware not to let your pieces sit in the baking soda bath for longer than 15 seconds, as this can give your pretzels a metallic taste.
For the Habanasco Queso Dip:
- Store leftovers in the refrigerator and heat up on the stovetop before serving.