Combine yeast, 1 1/2 tsp. brown sugar and water. Stand for 5 minutes until foamy.
Add remaining sugar and salt. Stir Add flour, a bit at a time. Mix by hand until well mixed.
Knead dough until it has a sheen (about 7 minutes). Place kneaded dough in bowl, cover, and rise for 40 minutes.
Dust your area with cornmeal and a little extra flour. Divide dough into 12 pieces and roll to your preferred length and thinness. Form dough into pretzel shapes and move to a cornmeal dusted baking sheet. Rise uncovered for an additional 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Bring pot of water to boil. Transfer risen pretzels to boiling water. Boil on one side for 1 1/2 minutes. Transfer to a rack to drain.
Arrange on cornmeal-dusted baking sheet, sprinkle with kosher salt and bake for 20 minutes.