Holiday Memories : Making Pretzels at Home

Welcome to another post from our Holiday Memories series.  Today I take us back to Florida in the summer of 2017 where I tasted the best ever Pretzels at Busch Gardens.

Holiday Memories : Making Pretzels at Home

Now I know Pretzels are German (and I have yet to experience a true German Pretzel) but Americans really know how to make a brilliant Pretzel too and for me, they were a real taste sensation.

In 2017 we were very lucky to land a job as real-life models for some of the Florida attractions - the people you see in their adverts / promo material. This involved very early starts as we would get to the parks before they opened. We were staying in Orlando so our day at Busch Gardens which is around 90 minutes away was a super early start. I think it was around 4am if I remember rightly.

We would spend from 6am - park opening shooting without any crowds and then spend a full day at the park shooting other material.

The whole experience was a little surreal, we had our own VIP team and camera crew/photographers following us around the park, they radioed ahead and closed rides / attractions as we arrived, we were escorted around the parks in Golf Buggies and I really don't think we will ever experience anything like this ever again.

This photo below is from the Serengati Safari - we had our own truck and there was a team of 7/8 not in the shot who were filming / directing etc...... We loved hand-feeding the giraffes but as midday was approaching and we had been working all morning, we were starving and ready for a break.

The team took us to Busch Gardens world famous Pretzel shop for a break. A whole area dedicated to Pretzels. There were so many to choose from with their signature Pretzel being the Bacon Twist (gorgeous). I don't know if it was the combo of the early start / the fact that we were tired or just that they were actually incredible but those Pretzels were a little piece of heaven.

They were served warm, crunchy on the outside, soft on the inside and with just the right amount of salt. I wasn't a fan of Pretzels before this but now I often catch myself thinking about them.

Holiday Memories : Making Pretzels at Home  - Pretzels at Busch Gardens

Back to work straight afterwards though. As we were dining the team cleared the Flamingo area so we could head straight there and shoot some images of us feeding them.

Holiday Memories : Making Pretzels at Home  - flamingos at busch gardens

Recreating our Pretzel Experience at home......

Lockdown provided the perfect opportunity for us to recreate our Pretzel experience at home. We follow this recipe by BBC Good Food . It was a complete faff if I am honest and takes a full half day.

First you make the dough, then let it prove for an hour. Then you knock back and form into pretzel shapes before covering with oiled cling film. At this stage they need to prove for a further 20 minutes.

Then you need to add them to simmering water with bicarbonate of soda (which has been pre-baked in the oven for an hour)  for 40 seconds before finally giving them an egg wash and baking for 20 minutes. Oh and then they need to cool on the baking tray for 10 minutes before then being transferred to a cooling rack.  Like I said, a complete faff!

You need to bake bicarbonate of soda in the oven for 1 hour to add to your pan of water. 

The BBC Good Food recipe makes 8 and we got the kids involved in making their own which they really enjoyed.

Holiday Memories : Making Pretzels at Home  - rolling pretzel dough

WOW all of that faff was 100000% worth it. They tasted so good! Just as good as our Busch Garden Pretzels. Steve says they were even better as our hard work went into them.

You can freeze Pretzels for up to 1 month so they are perfect for making ahead. I don't think they would ever get that far in our house though, so delicious and very moreish! Highly recommended.

Holiday Memories : Making Pretzels at Home

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Holiday Memories : Making Pretzels at Home


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