Preparation / Directions:
Heat milk and butter until very warm (120-130F.). Mix yeast, salt, sugar, and 1 cup flour. Slowly beat into warm milk. Beat for 2 minutes. Add eggs and 1 cup of flour. Beat for an additional 2 minutes. Add enough flour to form a soft dough.
Knead until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Place dough in a greased bowl. Let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour. Punch dough down and let rise again until doubled. (1 hour more). Divide dough in half.
Shape pretzel as follows: Roll dough into a rope about 30 inches long and 1 1/2 inches in diameter. Cross the ends leaving a large loop in the center. Flip loop back onto crossed ends to form a pretzel. Repeat with remaining dough. Place pretzels on greased baking sheets. Let rise 15 minutes more.
Bake at 375F for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown.
Cool on wire racks. Mix confectioners' sugar, water and vanilla to form a thin icing. Spread icing on pretzels and sprinkle with chopped almonds. Makes 2 large pretzels