Jessie Alice Smith
Pretzel Christmas Candy
A favorite Christmas-time tradition that has come down the generations in my family from grandmother to mother to myself.
I am a person who finds traditions comforting. To me, these annual holiday rituals help my brain and attitude acclimate to the coming festivities. Traditions help me get ready.
That is what Pretzel Christmas Candy is to me. Just one of the important steps to ready my mind and heart for Christmas.
I also believe that traditions like this play an important role in making memories for my kids. Through time, they will see me making this candy only during one special time of year and they will know that Christmas is around the corner. This one tradition of many will spark joyful anticipation in my family that will help ready them for the good times ahead.
To begin with, there really is no recipe. I will list what supplies I use and how I use them but it is a loose interpretation. Go with the flow on this one, folks, and customize them to your own tastes.
I do several different varieties of pretzel candy; peanut butter sandwiches, Rolo sandwiches, regular dipped pretzels, and sticks.
2 bags of Rolos
1 bag each of chocolate and vanilla melting chocolate bark
1 or 2 bags of pretzels (snaps, regular, and/or sticks)
Creamy Peanut Butter
2 microwave-safe bowls
I start with the Rolo-filled pretzels. Preheat your oven to 200°. Place your Snap pretzels on a baking sheet and place 1 Rolo in the center of each.
Place in the preheated oven for 4-5 minutes. They should still hold their form but be very soft.
Once out of the oven, squish down the Rolo with a second Snap pretzel creating a sandwich. Set aside to cool.
Next, I do the peanut butter sandwich pretzels:
Using the Snap pretzel again, use a knife and scrape and small amount of peanut butter on one pretzel and sandwich it with a second pretzel. Set aside.
Now I start melting my chocolate. I break off a few chocolate pieces and place them in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave it. First, at 30 second intervals, mix with a fork after each interval, then once it starts to melt, change to 15 second intervals until it is smooth and melted. Be very careful not to overheat it.
From here the fun begins, I do a mix of fully submerging, partial submerging, and drizzling. You do you! I find that I like the variety because some people like less chocolate than others.
If you do fully submerge the pretzel, shake off the excess chocolate and scrape the bottom of the pretzel on the side of the bowl.
Also, when submerging peanut butter pretzels, I suggest you do 1 at a time. The chocolate is hot and tends to melt the peanut butter if left in the chocolate for too long.
If you want to add sprinkles, add them about every 5 pretzels or the chocolate will start to harden and set and the sprinkles will not stick.
I also enjoy the drizzling method because it's light-years faster than dipping. To drizzle, make sure your chocolate is very melted and right out of the microwave. Use a fork and in fast motions, let the chocolate fall onto the surface of your pretzels (see the video at the end of this blog post). I also group the pretzels closely together on the wax paper for this so you don't waste a bunch of chocolate by it falling on the wax paper instead of the pretzel.
Now, let sit for about 30 minutes and then eat your face off!
Merry Christmas and happy holidays to you all!
All photography by Jessie Alice Smith