The pretzel. It can be enjoyed savory or sweet. It can be salted, dipped in mustard, or coated in icing. It’s easy to eat, satisfying, and it looks and tastes amazing. It’s little wonder pretzels are so popular, but popular they most certainly are.
There are several legends that pertain to the origins of the pretzel, but the one that seems to be most widely repeated is that the pretzel was invented in 610 A.D by an Italian monk who gave them as a reward to children that learned their bible verses.
The knot shape is said to represent the folded arms of praying children and the name pretzel stems from the word “pretiola” which means “little reward”.
Today, the pretzel is especially popular in Germany and in parts of the USA and, as well as being able to buy store bought treats, you can buy artisanal pretzels, and there are numerous recipes you can follow if you want to pep up your pretzel dishes.
Obviously, pretzels can be enjoyed exactly as they are bought, whether you prefer plain, savory or sweet. The simplicity of the ingredients is what makes pretzels such a great snack option. Pretzels were eaten in the Christian church during lent, because they eschewed ingredients like eggs and milk, which are traditionally avoided during this time. The simplest recipe uses only flour and water.
Sweeten Your Pretzel Treats
In keeping with the simplicity of the dish, here are a couple of ways to improve your pretzel snacks that are quick, easy, and inexpensive, and that you can do at home.
Cinnamon Sugar Pretzels
This really is a simple recipe that uses ingredients you might have laying around in the kitchen.
- Vegetable oil
- Granulated sugar
- Ground cinnamon
Preheat your oven to 330 degrees. While you wait, mix the oil, sugar and cinnamon in a bowl. You want a runny consistency. This will ensure that the mix sticks to the pretzels. Simply drop your pretzels in the mix and ensure that they are fully covered. Place them on a baking tray, lined with parchment paper, and pour any remaining mix over them. Finally, bake for approximately 30 minutes, moving the pretzels around occasionally to ensure a good spread of the cinnamon sugar.
Cookie Dough Pretzel Bites
Cookie dough is another firm snack favorite, and it not only tastes great in ice cream, but also sandwiched between two mini pretzels and coated in chocolate.
- Cookie dough
You can make your own cookie dough, or simply buy a pack from the shop if you’re feeling really lazy. Roll the dough into balls, each containing around 2 teaspoons of dough. Take two small pretzels and use them to squish the ball and create a pretzel sandwich with a cookie dough filling. Next chill the sandwiches for around 20 minutes while melting your choice of dark, milk, or even white chocolate into a bowl. Once the pretzel sandwiches have chilled a little, they will be easy to dip in the chocolate sauce and they shouldn’t separate or fall apart, which will happen if you skip this step. And there you have it, really simple cookie dough pretzel bites.
Pretzels are incredible, and there are many other recipes and tricks you can use to make them even better tasting.