Wholemeal Spelt Pretzels with Coconut Chocolate Dipping Sauce (Vegan and Wheat Free)

I suddenly realised it's Tuesday night and I need to write a blog post. I had yesterday off work and it threw me off completely. I kept thinking today was Monday. My two best friends - Kat and Rachel - came to visit me in Stoke yesterday. Rachel brought her beautiful baby Ava and we had a lovely lunch and a stroll around the shops at Trentham Gardens. If you are ever near Stoke I would highly recommend a trip to Trentham. I picked up some gorgeous cards for Mother's Day, a birthday and a little card for Nick from Yellowstone Art Boutique.
 
It was great having my friends come visit, it's hard being 50 miles away and not being able to drive but it's so nice to be able to sit down for lunch and catch up. I rewarded them for driving all the way over to see me by sending them home with slices of cake and cherry jam muffins (recipe in a future post).
 
When I started making these pretzels I was anxious that they would turn out to be awful - just because I'd never made them before - but I got really excited when it looked like they were working. They actually weren't much effort, they just take time but 3 1/2 hours of it is chilling in the fridge so I had time to watch The Biggest Loser and get the weekly food shop done. The chocolate sauce looks like heaven. Nick said it was amazing. It was so smooth and rich that it killed me not being able to eat chocolate. The sauce was made with coconut milk and I think this made it glossier than a ganache made with double cream.
 
I also made a GIF! I am far too excited by this. I've never made one before but I feel like dipping things in chocolate sauce was made for GIFs. I love all the ones Izy at Top With Cinnamon makes. It takes food porn to a whole new level.
 
How sexy is that?! I even get to show off my glittery nails in it. I sprinkled half of the pretzels with fleur de sel (perfect with the chocolate according to chef Nick) and the other half with pearl sugar. The pretzels are soft and yummy and I need them in my life on a daily basis.

Don't forget I'm giving away 2 tickets to The Cake and Bake Show as well. Enter here.
 
Wholemeal Spelt Pretzels with Coconut Chocolate Dipping Sauce (Vegan and Wheat Free)
(adapted from the Babycakes app)
 
200ml warm water
1 tablespoon agave nectar
1 tablespoon dried active yeast
30g coconut oil, melted
350g wholemeal spelt flour, plus extra for dusting
1 tablespoon salt
fleur de sel/pearl sugar, for sprinkling
 
for the boiling:
3 inches of water in a saucepan
3 tablespoons bicarbonate of soda
 
for the sauce:
200ml full fat coconut milk
200g dark chocolate, broken up
  1. In a jug, mix together the warm water, agave and coconut oil. Sprinkle the yeast on top and let sit for 15 minutes.
  2. In a large bowl or stand mixer, whisk together the spelt flour and tablespoon of salt. Make a well and pour in the water/yeast mix. Mix together (adding more flour if too sticky/more water if too dry) until a firm dough ball forms.
  3. Knead in the mixer or on a lightly floured surface for 2 minutes. Place in the bowl and cover with cling film, leave to rise for an hour.
  4. After an hour, knock back the bubbly dough and knead 3-4 more times. Place back in a bowl and chill for 3.5 hours.
  5. Pre-heat the oven to 230 C/450 F. Cut the dough into ping pong sized balls (I got 15). Roll each dough ball into a rope about 14 inches long. Twist into the pretzel shape (this tutorial is helpful) and press the ends to seal. Oil a baking tray and set to one side.
  6. In a large pan, bring the water and bicarb mix to a simmer. Place 1-2 pretzels in the pan at a time for 45 seconds on the first side, flipping over for another 30 seconds. Remove from the water and place on a wire rack. Sprinkle with salt/sugar. Move over to the baking tray.
  7. Bake in the oven for 6-8 minutes, or until golden brown and allow to cool for 10 minutes.
  8. For the chocolate sauce, heat the coconut milk in a pan until it just starts to boil. Remove from the heat and drop in the broken chocolate. Leave to melt for a minute then stir in until completely combined. Pour into a bowl ready for dipping.