This is a family favorite. The pretzels are soft and chewy and taste way better than the pretzels one can get at the mall. Morton's Sea Salt is prefect for these pretzels. It doesn't melt and gives them a classic pretzel flavor.
In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the brown sugar, salt and 2 cups flour; beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.
Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 4-6 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 45 minutes.
Punch dough down; divide into 12 portions. Roll each into a 18-in. rope; twist into a pretzel shape. Cover and let rest for 10 minutes.
In a large saucepan, bring water and baking soda to a boil. Place pretzels into boiling water, one at a time, for 30 seconds. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.
Place pretzels onto a preheated waffle iron coated with cooking spray. Cook for 1 to 1-1/2 minutes or until golden brown. Carefully remove to wire racks. Immediately brush with butter and sprinkle with additional salt. Serve warm.
For baked pretzels: Place on parchment-lined baking sheets. Brush with butter and sprinkle with additional salt. Bake at 475° for 7-9 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pans to wire racks. Serve warm.