“There are countries with no traditional bakeries anymore, because industrial production has taken over, and the knowledge and traditions have been lost,” says Ludwig Neulinger, the owner of the Neulinger chainlet of bakeries in Munich, Germany. “My apprentices are learning it the way it should be done. Maybe they’ll open their own bakeries someday. That would make me really happy.”
Neulinger learned the trade of baking buttery, soft, and golden brown Bavarian pretzels at a young age from his parents, who also owned a bakery. “I’ve been in the bakeshop since I was two, and [was] doing stuff like shaping the loaves and watching my dad work. I’ve always been a baker.”
Now, with 25 artisan bakers across five shops who also make cakes, breads, cookies, and other sweet treats, Neulinger insists on training all employees on the traditional techniques of baking Bavarian soft pretzels by hand. “The pretzel should be moist on the inside, and really crispy on the outside,” Neulinger says. “When you eat a fresh, hot one from the oven with some butter, it’s wonderful.
Watch the video to see more of Ludwig Neulinger’s Bavarian pretzel-making process.