Wednesday, June 5, 2013

School Spirit Chocolate Covered Pretzels

For my son's preschool graduation, we made these fun chocolate-covered pretzel rods in the school's colors. They just barely made the cut for "acceptable party snacks". We're going to go ahead and consider them healthy because they contain pretzels, right?

Typically when we make chocolate-covered pretzels, we roll them in sprinkles, coconut, or nuts after dipping them in chocolate.  For these, I really wanted to incoporate green and yellow for the school's colors.  Unfortunately, I couldn't find sprinkles in those colors.  (As an aside, don't bother using sugar sprinkles on these, they just blend into the chocolate).   Fortunately, I found three bags of candy melts in my pantry that I was saving for another project that solved my problem!  I'm always amazed at what I manage to pull out of my pantry and my craft closet when I need it!!

For these we used:
Pretzel Rods
Candy Melts
Chocolate (you'll notice that we used a GIANT Hershey Kiss that my husband received from a student from Valentine's Day and big giant Jesus fish that my son got on Easter.  We are all about recycling!  Of course, you can also use chocolate chips, almond bark, or anything else you like.)
Coconut Oil or Shortening (a few teaspoons should work perfectly)

1.  To melt the chocolate, we used a trusty microwave-safe bowl.  The kids helped me break up the chocolate (and eat a few pieces) and then we microwaved it on defrost for 45 seconds, and then in 30 second intervals until the chocolate was melted.  Go ahead and take the chocolate out while there are still a few chunks and stir it to melt the rest.  You don't want to burn the chocolate so it's stiff and difficult to work with.  I also recommend adding a teaspoon or so of the coconut oil/shortening to make it smoother and easier to work with.

2.  The kids helped cover the pretzel rods in chocolate by twirling the pretzels while we poured chocolate over them.  Gently shake off the excess and place on a wax-paper lined cookie sheet.  (If you are going to top with sprinkles, coconut, or nuts, now is the time to add those before the chocolate dries).

3.  After the cookie sheet was covered with pretzels, we placed it into the fridge to set while we set to work on the next batch of pretzels.

4.  With all the pretzels in the fridge, we set to work with the candy melts and melted about a 1/4 of the bag in a small microwave safe bowl using the same method.

5.  We shook a spoon over the pretzels to create a "splash" of color of the pretzels.  This was messy but effective.  I could probably have put the melted candy melts in a piping bag and made my stripes more precise, but I loved the look of the splattered colors.  After the candy melts were added, I put the pretzels back in the fridge for a few minutes to set.  We stored all the pretzels overnight in an airtight container in the fridge.

And here they are all dolled up on a pretty platter for the Preschool Graduation Party!

These would also make a sweet treat to give to teachers or students on the last day of school!

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