What’s better than two hours in the kitchen, laughing and spending time with your daughter while making pizza filled pretzel poppers? Honestly, nothing could be better than that for me, however, eating the poppers when they’re done would have to be a close second! Especially when they’re fresh out of the oven and the cheese is all gooey and melted when you take your first bite…sigh. THIS was a fun day!
This recipe is the perfect opportunity to get your kiddos in the kitchen with you and spend some time cooking together. I find doing the prep work ahead of time works best, so everything is all set out on the counter and ready before you begin. And if you like a little kick to your marinara sauce, mix in some sriracha. Yummy!
For the Dough:
10 cups of water
4 cups flour
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 ½ teaspoons salt
1package active dry yeast
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 ½ of cups warm water (approximately 110°F)
2/3 cup baking soda
2 teaspoons coarse salt
1 egg yolk, beaten
For the Filling:
(Be creative with your favorite fillings. These are some of ours.)
2 cups marinara sauce
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1 cup spicy sausage, cooked and crumbled
1 cup white onion, finely chopped
1 cup chopped button mushrooms
1 cup chopped black olives
1 cup chopped pepperoni
1/4 cup sriracha sauce
1) Combine 2 cups of the flour, sugar, salt and yeast in a bowl.
2) Add the warm water and oil to the flour mixture and stir the ingredients together with a wooden spoon until they’re thoroughly combined.
3) Stir in the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until the dough is soft and sticky, yet easy to handle.
4) Lightly flour a work surface, remove dough from the bowl and knead it for about 5 minutes until smooth. Lightly spray a sheet of plastic wrap with cooking spray; cover the dough loosely with the plastic wrap, sprayed side down. Let rest 45 minutes until the dough is doubled in size.
5) Pre-heat your oven to 375 degrees and line a baking sheet with Parchment paper.
6) Add flour as needed to your work surface where you’ll be rolling out the dough.
7) Pinch off pieces of the dough about the size of a golf ball until you have the dough fully distributed.
8) Roll out each ball to a circle about 3-4 inches in diameter and 1/2 thick.
9) Mix the marinara and sriracha sauce together in a small bowl.
10) Spoon a small amount of the sauce in the center of each circle, followed by a generous pinch of the cheese, and the other filling ingredients you’ve chosen.
11) Moisten the edge of each circle with a small amount of water on your finger and then carefully pinch the circles together sealing the edges, so all the filling ingredients are nestled inside the dough.
12) Bring the water and the baking soda to a boil in a large pot.
13) Gently drop the poppers into boiling water one at a time, for 30 seconds. Remove them from the water with a slotted spoon and place them an inch apart on the parchment-lined baking sheet.
14) Mix the egg yolk with one tablespoon of water in a small bowl. Brush each popper with the egg wash followed by a sprinkle of the salt.
15) Place the pan in the oven and bake the poppers for 15-20 minutes or until the dough is golden brown.
16) Remove the pan from the oven and allow the poppers to cool for about 5 minutes. Serve with a bowl of the leftover sauce for dipping.