- Portion size 500 servings
MethodA pretzel is an attractive, decorative shape that doesn¹t require a cookie cutter. Let the Test Kitchen show you how it's done >>
In large bowl, stir 2 tsp (10 mL) of the sugar with 1/4 cup (50 mL) warm water until dissolved. Sprinkle in yeast; let stand until frothy, about 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, in small saucepan, heat milk, remaining sugar, butter, cardamom, orange rind and salt until butter is melted; let cool to lukewarm. Stir into yeast mixture along with eggs.
Stir in 3-1/4 cups (800 mL) of the flour, about 1 cup (250 mL) at a time, to form shaggy dough.
Turn out onto lightly floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes, adding enough of the remaining flour as necessary.
Transfer to large greased bowl, turning to grease all over. Cover with plastic wrap; let rise in warm draft-free place until doubled in bulk, about 1-1/2 hours.
On lightly floured surface, divide dough in half. Roll each piece into 20-inch (50 cm) rope. Curve to create horseshoe; cross ends over each other twice. Bring ends up to curve of pretzel shape and press down.
Place loaves 3 inches (8 cm) apart on parchment paper lined baking sheet. Cover and let rise in warm draft-free place until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.
Brush tops with egg. Sprinkle with pearl sugar. Bake in centre of 375°F (190°C) oven until golden and loaf sounds hollow when tapped on bottom, about 25 minutes. Let cool on pan on rack for 5 minutes. Remove to rack; let cool completely.