Soft Pretzels

I learned to make these back in high-school at a church youth activity. I haven't made them in years, but when I read the recipe it sounded so good. I don't remeber them being very hard, either. I think my son would enjoy helping me make them. ( Hmm...I wonder if they'd be good with wheat flour??)

2 c. warm water
2 Tbsp yeast
½ c. sugar
2 tsp salt
¼ c. soft butter
1 egg
6 ½ - 7 ½ c. flour
1 egg yolk
2 Tbsp water
coarse salt

Measure warm water into large bowl. Sprinkle in yeast. Stir until dissolved Add sugar, salt, butter, 1 egg, and 3 c. of the flour. Beat until smooth. Add enough more of the flour to make a stiff dough, not too sticky. Cover the bowl tightly with foil and refrigerate for 2-24 hours. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface. Divide in half, cut each half into 16 equal pieces. Roll each piece out into snake-like pieces about 20 inches long. Shape into pretzels and place on lightly greased cookie sheets. Blend together egg yolk and 2 Tbsp water and brush the tops of pretzels. Sprinkle with coarse salt. Let rise in warm place until doubled, about ½ hour. Bake at 400 degrees about 15 min, or until done. Remove from baking sheets and cool on wire racks.