Pretzel Pockets Stuffed with Ham and Asiago

Pretzel Pockets Stuffed with Ham and Asiago Recipe via Kudos Kitchen By Renee

They say that the third time's the charm when it comes to trying and failing, and I have to believe it. For the past three Fridays in a row, I worked this recipe for my Pretzel Pockets Stuffed with Ham and Asiago only to be stopped dead in my tracks due to some horrendous sticking issues I was having after they were baked.

Now, don't get me's not like my family and I didn't get to benefit from having those ugly ripped and torn pretzel pockets in the house for all those weeks to enjoy, but they certainly weren't worthy of photos or a recipe write up if I couldn't figure out how to prevent that awful sticking to the pan. Let's face it, you as cooks would not be very happy with me if I weren't bringing you something that could be duplicated in your own kitchen without 100% satisfaction. I get it...and I worked hard to fix the problem. See???

Pretzel Pockets Stuffed with Ham and Asiago Recipe via Kudos Kitchen By Renee

The key (at least for me) was in not using parchment paper on the baking sheet, and not brushing on a heavy coat of egg wash right before baking, which I felt might be adhering them to the baking sheet. What I found did do the trick was baking the pretzels directly on a bare baking sheet that had been heavily sprayed/coated with olive oil and giving them only a light brush of egg wash that didn't run down and pool on the baking sheet around the pretzels.

Pretzel Pockets Stuffed with Ham and Asiago Recipe via Kudos Kitchen By Renee

The final result is a beautifully browned pretzel that is soft and chewy on the outside with a wonderful filling of ham, asiago and a slathering of honey mustard to round out all the flavors. Much to my family's chagrin, I will no longer be making these every week. Maybe every other week...because they're that good and because sticking is no longer an issue.

Oh, by the way, if you're not a fan of the ham and cheese filling, why not change things up to suit your tastes. You can do turkey and Swiss, or how about corned beef and sauerkraut? What about caramelized onions and ground beef? Or roasted veggies and cheddar? The possibilities are as endless as your imagination. Now that you know the process, you're virtually unstoppable!!!

Yield: 8 Sandwiches    Prep Time: 2 hours 30 minutes (including rise time)   Bake Time: 30 minutes

1 1/2 cups warm water (110-115 degrees)
1 package active dry yeast (2 1/4 teaspoon)
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
2 teaspoon salt
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups whole wheat flour (or you can use 4 cups all-purpose flour)
4 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon yellow mustard
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 pound thinly sliced ham
1/2 cup shredded Asiago cheese
10 cups water
4 tablespoons baking soda
1 large egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon water
kosher salt for topping
poppy seeds, optional
sesame seeds, optional

-In the bowl of a stand mixer, dissolve the yeast in the warm water. Stir in the sugar and allow the mixture to sit and get foamy (approximately 5-10 minutes).
-Add in the salt, flours and butter. Using the dough hook, knead on low speed for about 5 minutes until the dough comes away from the sides of the bowl and becomes smooth and elastic.
-Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and allow the dough to double in volume in a warm, draft free place (about 1 hour).
-While the dough is rising, mix together the mayonnaise, mustard and honey. Refrigerate until ready to assemble the pretzel pockets.
-Once the dough has doubled, punch it down to deflate and turn it out onto a lightly floured surface.
-Divide the dough equally into 8 portions.
-Using your hands, pat each portion of dough into roughly a 8"x 6" rectangle.
-Smear about 1 tablespoon of the prepared mayo/mustard into the center of each flatted dough rectangle.
-Place about 3 thin slices of ham and about 1 tablespoon of Asiago cheese on top of the mayo/mustard.
-Fold the dough over the filling forming a pocket, and use a fork to crimp the edges completely closed.
-Continue the same process with the remaining dough and filling ingredients placing them on a lightly floured baking sheet.
-Allow the pockets to rise again in a warm, draft free place until doubled (approximately 30-45 minutes)
-Meanwhile, bring the water and baking soda to boil in a large pot over medium heat.
-Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
-Gently drop each risen pretzel pocket into the boiling baking soda water for roughly 60 seconds, turning occasionally.
-Using a slotted spatula, carefully remove the pockets from the water and place them on a baking sheet that has been heavily sprayed (or greased) with olive oil. Continue the same process with the remaining pockets.
-Using a pastry brush, lightly brush the top of each pocket with a little egg wash.
-Sprinkle the tops of each pocket with the salt, poppy and sesame seeds, if desired.
-Bake the pockets in a preheated oven for 30 minutes or until they're a deep golden brown.
-Allow the pockets to cool for about 30 minutes and then gently use a spatula to loosen them from the baking sheet to cool completely or to be eaten warm.
-Serve with additional mayo/mustard  dipping sauce if desired.

Again, it's worth another look because I'm so relieved to be able to bring this recipe to you without worrying that you'll have the sticking problem that I had....WOOT!

Pretzel Pockets Stuffed with Ham and Asiago Recipe via Kudos Kitchen By Renee

Cheers to success in the kitchen with... Doh! Sorry, couldn't help myself. LOL

Duff Beer painted stein
If there is ever anything I can paint for you, please don't hesitate to contact me or visit my shop which is located within the navigation bar. Custom orders are always welcome and I can work from any photo or description you send my way.

Kudos Kitchen By ReneƩ ~ Where food, art and fun collide on a regular basis!

Until we eat again,

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