So how do we feel about the Superbowl?

Once the Broncos were out, I kind of stopped caring but there’s piece of me that’s sad the Colts aren’t going. I’ll be watching it, of course, but I just don’t really have a preference now. 

Next year, the Broncos will be there. Putting it out in the universe now. 

Okay, so it’s time to plan your Superbowl menu. You gotta have the wings, you gotta have some sweets, and you really need to make these Ham and Cheese Pretzel Bites. 

Guys, I cannot tell you how simple homemade pretzels are. I always go into it thinking “Gahhhh, this is going to take ALL DAY and they probably won’t even turn out well” and then I’m always pleasantly surprised when it takes 2 hours (that includes rising time) and they turn out awesome.

If you’re scared of working with yeast, try the pretzels. For whatever reason, I’ve had multiple yeast fails in the past month but these were a piece of cake.

These pretzel bites are stuffed with ham and cheddar… I mean.

So good. I love soft pretzels anyway but when you add ham and cheddar, I could eat my weight in them.  And they’re bite-sized which means you can eat more. That’s how it works, right?

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Ham and Cheese Pretzel Bites

Ingredients

1 package (1/4 oz) active dry yeast
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 cup warm water (110-115 degrees F)
1 cup warm milk (110-115 degrees F)
2 1/2 to 3 cups flour
1/2 cup finely chopped ham
1/2 cup shredded cheddar
6 cups water
4 teaspoons baking soda
4 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1-2 Tablespoons coarse salt

Instructions

  1. Combine the yeast, brown sugar, warm water, and warm milk in a large bowl. Set aside until foamy, 5-8 minutes.
  2. Add 2 1/2 cups flour to the yeast. Stir with a wooden spoon until a soft dough forms. Add the remaining flour as needed. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and gently knead a few times, forming a smooth ball.
  3. Spray a large bowl with oil. Transfer the dough to the bowl and roll it around to get all the sides oiled. Cover and let wise in a warm area for about an hour, until dough has doubled in size.
  4. Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Divide into 4 equal pieces. Lightly dust your hands and rolling pin with flour. Roll one of the four sections into a 12Ă—4-inch rectangle. With the long side facing you, gently press 1/4 of the ham and cheese into the bottom third of the dough, and roll as tightly as possible, starting with the end that has the filling. Cut into 12 1-inch pieces and transfer to a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Repeat with remaining 3 portions of the dough.
  5. Let rest, uncovered, at room temperature for 30 minutes.
  6. Preheat oven to 400F.
  7. Bring 6 cups of water to a boil. Add the baking soda and reduce to a gentle simmer. Working in batches, boil pretzels, cooking about 20 seconds each, turning halfway through. They should be slightly puffed. Use a slotted spoon to drain the water and transfer to a parchment-covered baking sheet.
  8. Bake about 15 minutes or until golden and puffed. Remove and brush the warm pretzels with melted butter and sprinkle with salt. Serve warm.
http://fakeginger.com/ham-cheese-pretzel-bites/

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