Being raised in PA Dutch country I have grown to LOVE pretzels! I currently live in beautiful Charleston and am completely homesick for a delicious, warm soft pretzel (of which is nearly impossible to come by in the south). So today I thought I would share my love in an ode to soft pretzels!
The best of the best is made from the original Julius Sturgis pretzel bakery in Lititz PA! Located in Lancaster county, Julius Sturgis was founded in 1861 and is the first commercial pretzel bakery in America and still open to this day! I remember going there several times in my youth to tour the bakery and learn how to hand roll them the old fashioned way! I remember walking around the bakery in awe of the beautiful red, brown, mauve bricks that look like they were hand made by a mason!!! So much history in that bakery!
The ancient history of just where exactly pretzels originate from is quite unclear however the first record is reported from 610 A.D. where monks would use scraps of dough to form the shape of children’s arms while in prayer. The three holes were meant to represent the Christian Trinity and was called “pretiola” in Latin meaning “little reward.” They were passed out to the children who learned their bible verses and said their prayers!
There are so many notations about pretzels and the good luck that they bring through out history!
I do encourage you, if enticed too, follow up with your own research! Pretzels are a unique treat with a historical background and are delicious to eat! Next time you are in the Lancaster area, check out Americas oldest pretzel bakery, it is so worth it! And while you are there you can also visit the Wilbur Chocolate Co. as well!!!