- 1 (0.25-ounce) package active dry yeast
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 3 tablespoons barley malt syrup, divided
- 2 cups whole wheat pastry flour, divided
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons baking soda
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 1 tablespoon milk
- Coarse salt
Gradually incorporate the all-purpose flour, 1 cup at a time, kneading until smooth. Turn dough out onto a floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Transfer dough to a clean large bowl, cover with oiled plastic wrap and set aside to let rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 400°F. Place rack in upper third of oven. Lightly oil a large baking sheet; set aside.
Put 1 quart water, baking soda and remaining 2 tablespoons barley malt into a large pot and bring almost to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until ready to use, making sure to stir it often.
Punch down dough and turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Cut into 20 pieces and cover with a floured cloth to keep them from drying out. Working with one piece at a time, use the palms of your hands to roll dough into a rope about 18 inches long, then form into a pretzel. (Holding each end with one of your hands, lay the middle point of the rope onto a floured surface, cross the two ends and spiral them, forming a heart, then lay down the ends to complete the pretzel's shape.)
Ease the pretzel into the simmering water mixture and poach it for about 30 seconds per side. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pretzel to a dry towel, pat gently, then transfer to prepared baking sheet. Repeat process with remaining dough.
Whisk together egg and milk in a medium bowl. When all pretzels are formed, brush them with the egg mixture and sprinkle all over with coarse salt. Bake until golden brown, 13 to 15 minutes.
Note: We've provided special diet and nutritional information for educational purposes. But remember — we're cooks, not doctors! You should follow the advice of your health-care provider. And since product formulations change, check product labels for the most recent ingredient information. See our Terms of Service.