GREEN 42, GREEN 42, WEASEL, WEASEL, LITTLE BUNNY FUFU…OMAHA!
Whatever the heck that means. Does anyone understand what these quarterbacks are talking about before the snap? Mind you this is a rhetorical question, because honestly I don’t care. When I watch football, it is usually by accident. Either because OB is watching and I happen to be in the room, or there is a football watching gathering. In those cases, I am there for the food and to watch the commercials.
Don’t misunderstand, I don’t hate football, but I am more likely to watch if it’s an exciting game; otherwise I am more apt to spend my time checking my Instagram feed.
Of course, as soon as the bites came out of the oven I had to do some necessary quality control. Holy molly! These are so crazy “gut”! (That is German for good, btw.) Swoon-worthy soft pretzel bread, with the salty sourness that make pretzels so lovable, wrapped around a meaty little sausage. Be warned these little bites are incredibly addictive. I love this soft, salty pretzel dough.
Of course, I can’t forget the cheese sauce! Hello! Cheese, meet, beer and you shall be best friends!
I will be honest this beer cheese dip is kind of like mustard. It’s amazing (seriously) with pretzel dog bites, hot dogs, corn dogs and burgers, but you may not necessarily want a full spoonful straight up. At least, I wouldn’t want a spoonful of mustard; you might be different (weird) but, to each its own.
So, which teams are you hoping to see go head-to-head at the Super Bowl or are you in it more for the commercials?
- Pretzel Dogs
- 1½ cups warm water
- 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
- 1 package active dry yeast (2¼ teaspoons)
- 3 ounces unsalted butter, melted
- 2½ teaspoons kosher salt
- 4½ to 5 cups all-purpose flour
- Vegetable oil
- 3 quarts water
- ¾ cup baking soda
- 1 whole egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon cold water (egg wash)
- Coarse sea salt or Kosher salt
- 2 14 oz packages cocktail sausages, drained and patted dry
- Cheese Dip
- 1 bottle beer
- 3 cups grated orange sharp Cheddar cheese
- 2 tablespoon flour
- 8 oz cream cheese, diced and softened
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- Salt and pepper
- Pretzel Dogs
- In the bowl of a stand mixer combine the water, sugar, yeast and butter, mix with the dough hook until combined. Let sit for 5 minutes.
- Add the salt and flour and mix on low speed until combined. Increase the speed to medium and continue kneading until the dough is smooth and dough pulls away from the side of the bowl, about 3 to 4 minutes. (If the dough appears too wet, add additional flour, 1 tablespoon at a time.) Turn dough out of the bowl, place on a flat surface and knead into a ball.
- Oil the same bowl with vegetable oil, return the dough to the oiled bowl and turn to coat with the oil. Cover with a clean towel or plastic wrap and place in a warm spot until the dough doubles in size, about 1 hour.
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
- Bring the water to a boil in a small roasting pan over high heat and add the baking soda.
- Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Remove the dough from the bowl and place on a lightly floured work surface. Divide the dough into 8 equal pieces, about 4¼ to 4½ ounces each. Roll each piece into a long rope until just about ½ inch in diameter. Take a cocktail sausage and begin to roll the dough around it, using a knife of a bench knife, cut the dough right where the dough meets, tightly pinch the dough at the seam to secure.
- Boil the bites in the water solution in batches, about 10 - 15 at a time. Boil for about 30 seconds. (If some of the seams pop a little, just pinch them back together.) Remove with a large slotted spoon. Place pretzel bites, seam side down, on a prepared baking sheet. Make sure they are not touching. Brush the bites with the egg wash and season liberally with the salt. Place into the oven and bake for 15 to 18 minutes until golden brown, turn pan ½ way for even browning.
- Remove to a baking rack and let rest 5 minutes before eating. Serve with cheese sauce.
- Cheese Dip
- In a saucepan over medium heat, bring the beer to a simmer. In a bowl, toss the cheese with the flour. Add the cheese mixture to the beer with the remaining ingredients. Stir until all the cheese has melted and the texture is smooth, about 5 minutes. Strain through a fine mesh strainer. Keep warm until ready to serve.
Cheese dip can be made ahead of time. Cover with plastic wrap touching the surface of the cheese dip to prevent skin, refrigerate. Reheat in a sauce pot and serve.