Makes 12-15 medium pretzels
1 tablespoon sugar
1 package active dry yeast
1Â½ cups warm water
4 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon salt
2 tablespoons fresh horseradish, grated
2 tablespoons of each of the following fresh herbs, chopped: thyme, marjoram, chives, parsley, tarragon
1 large egg, beaten
Â¼ cup fresh chives, chopped fine, for garnish
Mix together sugar, yeast and water in a metal or glass mixing bowl until frothy. Let sit until foamy, about 5-7 minutes. In another large mixing bowl combine flour and salt.
Whisk together 4 cups flour and 1 tablespoon table salt in a large bowl. Add yeast mixture, horseradish and herbs and stir with a wooden spoon until it forms into a soft dough. Gently dust a smooth flat work surface with flour, turn out dough and knead gently, using enough additional flour to make a smooth sticky dough, about 10 minutes (Dough needs to be somewhat sticky to facilitate rolling and forming into pretzels).
Place dough back into the bowl and cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel, let dough sit in warm place until doubled in bulk, about 45 minutes. Turn out dough onto a clean work surface and cut into 12-15 equal pieces. Using your palms, roll 1 piece back and forth on a clean dry work surface into a rope about 12″ long. If dough sticks to your hands, lightly dust them with flour. Twist dough into a pretzel shape. (Dough will retract as you form the pretzel.)
Transfer pretzel with your hands to an oiled or lined with parchment paper baking sheet and place all the formed pretzels about 2 inches apart on all sides.
Preheat oven to 425Â°F.
Let pretzels stand, uncovered, about 20 minutes. Bring a wide 6-quart pot of water to a boil.
Using both hands, carefully add a few pretzels, 1 at a time, to boiling water and cook, turning over once with tongs, until pretzels are puffed and shape is set, about 3 minutes. Transfer parboiled pretzels to a rack to cool. Repeat with remaining pretzels.
Line baking sheet with parchment paper and oil paper, then arrange pretzels on sheet. Brush pretzels lightly with some of egg and sprinkle with pretzel salt and chives. Bake until golden brown and lightly crusted, about 35 minutes. Cool 15 minutes, then serve warm.