3 tablespoons butter
2 cups warm water (between 105-110F)
1 tablespoon sugar
3 teaspoon active dry yeast
6 cups bread flour (high protein; I used 14%)
2 teaspoons kosher salt
8-10 cups water
1/3 cup baking soda
1 egg beaten together with 1 teaspoon water
coarse sea salt
In the bowl of a stand mixer, place 1 cup sof the flour with a well in the middle. Combine the butter, hot water and sugar. Stir to combine and melt the butter. Sprinkle the yeast over the top of the mixture and let sit for 10 minutes, at which point it should be nice and foamy.
With the dough hook attachment, stir in 2 more cups of flour and the kosher salt. Scrape down the sides of the bowl a couple of times. Add remaining flour and mix until dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and forms a ball (should take a few minutes). Continue kneading until dough becomes smooth and elastic (about 4-5 minutes more). Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and form into a ball. Place in a lightly oiled bowl, cover and allow to rise for one hour, or until doubled.
After an hour, punch the dough down and turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Divide into twelve pieces and roll into small balls. Place on a greased baking sheet, cover and allow to rest for 20 minutes.
Preheat oven to 400F and line baking sheets with parchment paper or silpat.
In a large pot, heat 8-10 cups of water until just boiling. Stir in 1/3 cup baking soda. Keep at a low boil and place each dough ball into the water. Cook for 45 seconds, flipping in the middle. Remove and place on the baking sheets. Once you’ve boiled each ball, brush with egg wash and sprinkle with coarse sea salt. Cut a small X on the top of each dough ball with a sharp paring knife.
Bake at 400F for 15-18 minutes, until very brown on the outside. Allow to cool.