In a large mixing bowl combine warm water, salt, sugar, maple syrup and yeast. Mix well and let sit for about ten minutes - the yeast will begin to activate and bubbles will start to appear. Once the yeast has activated, add melted butter and flour and using a wooden spoon mix to form a dough. If the dough seems too wet, add a bit more flour - if the dough is a bit too dry, add a splash of water.
Turn the dough out onto a well-floured work surface and knead the dough for about five minutes. Form the dough into a ball and place into a lightly oiled bowl and cover with a tea towel and let rise for about 45 minutes to an hour. The dough will double in size.
Pre-heat oven to 400° and line two baking sheets with parchment paper and lightly spray with non-stick cooking spray. While the dough is rising, prepare the baking soda bath.
In a large pot bring nine cups of water to boil and add the baking soda. After the dough has risen, pop it out of the bowl onto a floured work surface and divide it into eight equal pieces. Roll out each piece into a long (aprox. 24”) rope. To form the pretzels grab each end of the rope and make a U shape.
Twist each end with each other and bring the twist back down and over the bottom loop and pinch to form the pretzel shape. Repeat with each rope and place them on the prepared baking sheets. The pretzels are now ready for their baking soda bath.
Carefully drop two pretzels at a time into the baking soda bath. Let each pretzel sit in the bath for about 20 seconds on each side, remove with a slotted spoon and place back on prepared baking sheets.
In a small bowl mix together egg and water and brush each pretzel with the wash and sprinkle with coarse salt. Bake for 25 minutes - the pretzels should be nicely browned, have a beautiful crust and soft on the inside.
While the pretzels are baking, prepare your glaze. In a mixing bowl combined amber maple syrup and melted butter. Once the pretzels are out of the oven brush each one with the maple glaze. Serve immediately and enjoy!
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