Posted by: Bill & Gayle McCord | December 24, 2010

Weekend Recipe: Pretzel Yummies

A Group Effort

Emily, Becky, and I hosted a baby shower for my niece, Hillary, who is expecting a boy in February.  I was really impressed with the girls and their hard work.  Becky made a diaper cake, an adorable diaper wreath with baby toys, and cupcakes with a barnyard theme.  She also painted a tractor for the baby’s nursery.  Emily made an Italian cream cake (Becky did the writing!), spinach-artichoke dip, and a new recipe: pretzel yummies.  She got the recipe from a friend and we really enjoyed them…so much so that we feel we must share them!  {I just copied the recipe from the link above.}

Pretzel Yummies

1 cup packed brown sugar
½ cup light-colored karo syrup
¼ cup butter
2/3 cup sweetened condensed milk
½ tsp. vanilla
25 pretzel rods or one 14 oz. pkg. whole Bavarian pretzels
2 cups walnuts (8 oz.)
1 cup peanut butter-flavored pieces
1 cup milk chocolate pieces

1. In a food processor combine walnuts, peanut butter pieces, and milk chocolate pieces. Cover and process until mixture is coarsely chopped (or coarsely chop nuts, peanut butter, and chocolate pieces with a knife and combine). Transfer to a large bowl; set aside. (Hint: as you get more adventurous, try different combinations–especially if someone you know has a nut allergy. I’ve gone as far as mint drops, toffee bits, shredded coconut, and themed sprinkles–not all at once.)

We used mini chocolate chips and peanuts.

2. In a small heavy saucepan combine brown sugar, karo syrup (or Golden Syrup), and butter. Bring to boiling over medium heat, stirring constantly. Stir in sweetened condensed milk. Return to boiling over medium heat, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to medium-low. Clip a candy thermometer to side of pan. Continue cooking, stirring constantly, until mixture reaches 236 degrees F, soft-ball stage (should take about 10 minutes). (Adjust heat as necessary to maintain a steady boil.) Remove saucepan from heat; stir in vanilla. Cool 15 to 20 minutes or until slightly thickened. (Hint: As I don’t use a thermometer, I just set the timer for exactly ten minutes; works every time.)

3. Dip each pretzel into caramel mixture, covering about two-thirds of the pretzel. Let caramel drip off slightly. Roll some of the chopped mixture onto the caramel on the pretzel, pressing crumbs lightly with back of a spoon. Let stand on nonstick foil until caramel is set. Store in an airtight container between layers of wax paper in refrigerator up to 4 days or freeze up to 1 month. Makes 25 pretzels rods or 15 whole Bavarian pretzels. (Hint: I lay out my chopped rolling items on a cookie sheet, place the pretzel with caramel in the middle, dribble the bits over top and press in. Be careful! The caramel is hot!)

*Technically you could use soft caramels and melt them down but this way you can say you basically made these from scratch barring the pretzel itself. The caramel is much more delicious this way, I think. So put down those wrapped candies and go for it!

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