"Growing up, baking was something my mom and grandma and I did together. I think my mom thought it would be a hobby—but I took it a little further! I've worked in all sorts of places, from fine dining restaurants to homestyle Southern bakeries, like Back in the Day Bakery in Savannah. And no matter what there's always been a bag of White Lily flour around."
"I like to call my style "modern grandma." I get excited about taking dishes I grew up with—things like pretzel Jell-O salad or Watergate salad—and finding ways to freshen them up or elevate them using local produce or homemade vinegar and sauces we make in house. There's still nostalgia about them, but they're more than that too."
"My mom has always been my inspiration. When I was a kid she was up for trying anything that seemed fun. It was a real blessing. One of her specialties was soft pretzels—she always served them with what she called her "poor man's seafood stew," which had a combo of New Orleans and Maryland flavors—a real Southern melting pot. They're still one of my favorite things to make at home."
Old Bay Soft Pretzels -- adapted from Caitlyn Jarvis
Makes 10 Pretzels
1 ¾ cups White Lily Bread Flour
2 ¾ cups White Lily All-Purpose Flour
2 ¼ teaspoons instant yeast
1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
1 ½ cups water, heated to around 110°F degrees
1 ½ tablespoons sorghum or molasses
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
2 cups water
4 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons brown sugar
1 large egg, beaten
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
Pretzel salt or coarse kosher salt
Old Bay seasoning
Make the dough:
1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the bread flour, all-purpose flour, yeast, and salt.
2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, whisk together the warm water and sorghum (or molasses). With the mixer on low, slowly add the flour mixture to the water mixture until combined. Then increase the mixer speed to medium high and continue kneading the dough until it is smooth and elastic, about 6 minutes.
3. Transfer dough to a lightly oiled bowl and cover. Set aside to proof until nearly doubled in size, about 30 to 40 minutes.
4. After the dough has proofed, transfer it to a flour-dusted work surface and divide it into 10 equal pieces.
5. Roll each piece into a thin rope about 24- to 26-inches long and twist into a pretzel shape. Transfer to two parchment lined baking sheets. Cover and let rest.
Prepare the poaching liquid:
6. Add the remaining water, baking soda, and brown sugar to a medium pot and bring to a low simmer, stirring to dissolve. Reduce heat to low.
7. One by one, gently lower the shaped pretzels into the warm poaching liquid, turning them once, so that each side spends about 45 seconds in the liquid. Transfer finished pretzels to two clean parchment-lined baking sheets.
8. Brush lightly with egg wash and sprinkle with pretzel salt. Let rest, uncovered, for 10 minutes.
9. Heat the oven to 450°F.
10. Bake the pretzels until golden brown, rotating the pans once, about 15 to 20 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack. Brush with melted butter and sprinkle lightly with Old Bay seasoning. Enjoy warm