If you opt to use baking soda instead of lye, follow these instructions:
When using the baking soda bath you will need to bake ¼ cup of baking soda at 250 degrees for 1 hour. Then you will need a stainless pot with 8 cups of water. Add the baked baking soda to the pot of water and cook on high until you it simmers. Use a stainless steel spoon to mix the solution to make sure the baking soda dissolves. Then turn the heat to medium to maintain a simmer. You are ready to dip your pretzels for 30 seconds then cook.
Dip the wrapped smokies in the lye or baking soda solution for 30 seconds then place them back on the baking sheet (if you use lye, do not touch at this stage). After you dip all of dough wrapped smokies, score them with a sharp knife and top with pretzel salt.
Bake for 5-8 minutes at 425 degrees . The cooking time can vary based on how close you have your oven rack to the heating element. Start looking at them after 5 minutes. No one wants burnt pigs in a blanket. LOL
Let them cool for about 5 minutes and enjoy!