While you're frying up some eggs and bacon, we're cooking up something else: a way to celebrate today's food holiday.
Twist and shout! April 26 is National Pretzel Day.
No matter which way you twist them (or don’t), pretzels are a popular snack. Their origin however, might surprise you.
Seventh century French and Italian monks rewarded children who’d learned their Bible verses with pretzels. It’s been said that the way pretzels are twisted to represent someone with their arms crossed in prayer, and that the three holes made by the twists represent the father, son and holy spirit. To back this all up, the word pretzel derives from the Latin word for "little reward" and the Italian word for "little arms."
While the early pretzels were the soft kind, we have the Pennsylvania Dutch to thank for the hard, crunchy kind. In fact, Pennsylvania still makes most of America’s pretzels – 80% of them to be exact. That’s a lot when you consider that $1 billion worth of pretzels are sold annually.
Whether you like them hard or soft, with or without salt, dipped in mustard or nothing at all, it’s clear that pretzels aren’t going anywhere. And, if you’d like to help celebrate the day, check with your local pretzel seller as some are giving their twisted snack away for free.