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"Your Holiday Directory"
  National Soft Pretzel Month!
When is National Soft Pretzel Month? Always the month of April!

Origin of this Holiday
Our research did not find the creator, or the origin of this day. We did however find that this holiday has been celebrated for years. There is plenty of documentation to support that National Soft Pretzel Month" does indeed exist.

We are wondering if this holiday was created by a food organization- but, our research couldn't find the creator-

This holiday is referred to as a "National" day., as all food holidays are.   However, we did not find any congressional records or presidential proclamations for this day. Even though we didn't, this is still a holiday that is publicized to celebrate.
So have fun with it and celebrate it!

We found recognition about this holiday from:
Calendar sites and personal Internet sites that blog and share information about this holiday.

"A pretzel is a bread pastry of Medieval European (probably Italian) origin,
that has the shape of a three looped knot or twisted braid. Pretzels are either soft or hard. Hard pretzels have evolved into a variety of shapes from knotted loops to straight "pretzel sticks" (called "Salzstangen" in German, Ropi in Hungarian). The pretzel dough is made from wheat flour, water, sugar and yeast, sprinkled with coarse salt. Pretzels are typically glazed with lye and salted. Pretzels can be found in a variety of shapes and sizes. Traditional soft pretzels are about the size of a hand. Most hard pretzels are only 2-3 mm thick. Hard pretzels which are 0.8-1.5 cm thick are called Bavarian pretzels. In many parts of Europe such as Austria, traditional Pretzels often contain Caraway seeds, mixed in with the dough."

"In the United States, pretzels are a popular snack, Pennsylvania being the center of pretzel history and production. One American variety is yogurt-covered pretzels (or "ghost-face"), with a thin coating of yogurt. Hard pretzels are also available with a sweet candy coating of chocolate, strawberry and other flavors. Chocolate-covered hard pretzels are very popular, especially around Christmas time. Other serving possibilities include pretzels dipped in mustard." (see Types of Mustard)

"Pretzels are common in southern Germany (Swabia, Baden and Bavaria), and Switzerland, where they are often sliced horizontally, buttered and sold as Butterbrezel. In Bavaria they eat pretzels for breakfast, with Weisswurst sausage. (see Bavarian Breakfast) In Hungary they are called perec. Other sources derive the name from Latin bracellus (a medieval term for "bracelet"), or bracchiola ("little arms"). Large, soft, salted unglazed pretzels arrive every morning to the bakery shops, together with freshly baked bread, and are sold fresh in almost every bakery shop. They are popular pastries, consumed between meals, eaten alone or together with yogurt or milk. Tiny hard glazed pretzels and pretzel sticks are sold in packages as snacks."

History of the European pretzel
"Sources give different information for the time and place of the pretzel's origin. The History of Science and Technology, by Bryan Bunch and Alexander Hellemans, claims that in 610 A.D. "...an Italian monk invents pretzels as a reward to children who learn their prayers. He calls the strips of baked dough, folded to resemble arms crossing the chest, 'pretiola' ("little rewards")". However no source is cited to back up these details. Documentation shows that pretzel shaped pastries were used in the bakery emblems of bakers guilds in Southern Germany since 1111. In the 12th century, Hortus Deliciarum from the southwest German Alsace (today France) may contain the earliest depiction of a pretzel."

"In the 16th century, the German tradition of eating pretzels during Good Friday dinner is introduced. It is said that the shape of the pretzel is like that of praying hands. Within the Catholic church, pretzels are regarded as having religious significance for both ingredients and shape. Pretzels made with a simple recipe using only flour and water could be eaten during Lent, when European Christians were forbidden to eat eggs, lard or dairy products like milk and butter. As time passed, pretzels became associated with both Lent and Easter. Pretzels were hidden on Easter morning just like eggs are hidden today and are particularly associated with Lent, fasting and prayers before Easter. The classic pretzel's three-hole shape begins to take form. The three holes represent the Christian trinity of "Father, Son and Holy Spirit," and pretzels are thought to bring luck, prosperity, and spiritual wholeness. The wedding phrase "tying the knot" got its start when a pretzel was used to tie the knot between two prominent families. The pretzel's loops stood for everlasting love."

"In 1609, Johannes Kepler states that "[if] one puts all of this information together in one bundle, and at the same time believes that the sun truly moves across the Zodiac over the space of a year, as Ptolemy and Tycho Brahe believed, then it is necessary to concede that the circuits of the three above planets through ethereal space are, as it were, a complex of several movements, that they are actually twisted; not like piled-up cord, with coils in a sequential order, but rather in the image of a lenten bread, as the following diagram shows..." (panis quadragesimalis or lenten bread is a pretzel)."

See Also
Banana Bread How-to-video  /  Cranberry Orange Loaf How-to-video  /  Bread Recipes  / Bread
No-Knead Bread How-to-video  /  Buttermilk Biscuits How-to-video  / Pumpkin Bread Recipes
Hard Tack Sea Biscuits  / cakes  / Gift Giving  / Coffee Cake Recipes  /  Gifts in a jar  / Cook Books
Herbs  /

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses some material from Wikipedia/article soft pretzel/and other related pages. Top Photo by:
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A look into National Food Holidays
National Bread Month: November
National Flour Month: March
National Nutrition Month: March
Drink Holidays Food Holidays
The average American consumes about 1.5 pounds (0.7 kg) of pretzels per year! Pennsylvania produces 80% of the nation's pretzels, and the average Philadelphian consumes about twelve times more pretzels than the national average.
photo by: Arnaud 25
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