Chocolate pretzels are a delightful combination of sweet and salty flavors. This incredibly popular snack has been around since the 7th century and continues to provide all the deliciousness we have come to know and love about pretzels. Pretzels come in soft form as well as hardened. They can be torn off and dipped into mustard or cheese sauces for a savory treat or coated with chocolate or cinnamon to satisfy your sweet tooth.
Pretzels: The Origins
Made from dough and called by some as the oldest snack in the world, pretzel is a bread commonly shaped into a knot. They are relatively easy to make and are commonly mass produced using automated machinery. You can grab a pretzel while strolling through the mall or when you go to watch a movie at the theatre. A recent survey found that pretzels in the United State make are a $560 million a year industry. That’s over 300 million lbs. (136.2 million kg) of pretzels and pretzel products being sold annually!
Pretzels are such a popular snack because they are healthier than most snacks like potato chips and they are fat-free. A typical soft pretzel has a glossy brown surface and soft and warm doughy interior. They can be served salted or with dips like cheese, jalapeno, cinnamon, or chocolate. Hard pretzels on the other hand taste very similar to crackers and have a crispy brittle texture. According to food historians, the first pretzel ever made was in 610 A.D. by a monk. Living in either northern Italy or France, he used left over dough to make a pretzel shape. It was meant to look like a child’s arms folded in prayer. He started making these pretzels as a reward to all those children who learned their prayers. The snacks were called pretiola, which means ‘little reward’ in Latin. After a time, these snacks make their way to Germany and Austria and that is where they got their name. Pretzels kept growing in popularity and were brought over to America around 1620.
Endless varieties of pretzels
Today, pretzels are particularly very popular in American and in Germany. As the snack grew in popularity, so did its many different variations. Hard pretzels now commonly come dipped in chocolate or yoghurt. Soft pretzels on the other hand are often served with dips such as mustard or jalapeno cheese. They also come with cinnamon glaze, or with a chocolate dip.
You can even make your own chocolate covered pretzels right at home! Here’s what you’ll need:
- 2 cups chopped semi-sweet chocolate or chocolate chips
- 1 tablespoon shortening
- A large bag of mini pretzels
- For decoration: assorted sprinkles, small candies, crushed nuts, or chocolate to drizzle.
Preparations of Chocolate Covered Pretzels
- Place the chopped chocolate and shortening in a microwaveable bowl and heat on high for about 30 seconds or until the chocolate has melted nicely.
- Use a fork to dip the pretzels in the chocolate and let excess chocolate drip off
- Decorate the pretzels while still wet with your choice of sprinkles, nuts, etc.
- Place chocolate pretzel on a piece of parchment paper and allow to dry.
Chocolate pretzels are an exciting new spin on one of the world’s oldest snacks. If you’re looking for ways to reinvent the beloved pretzel, chocolate is the answer. Whether you like your pretzels soft or hard, chocolate is the perfect addition to this treat. Use it as a dip or opt for chocolate coated pretzels. Whichever option you choose, have a great time snacking.