Strawberry Pretzel Salad
Now that I feel normal about food again, I’m finally ready to resume this cooking blog. It was a rough few months between January and April with all of the food aversions and nausea that came with being in my first trimester of pregnancy, but now blogging about food sounds fun again.
Strawberry Pretzel Salad was something I’d been craving for the past few weeks, and I finally made it yesterday. It was the first time we’d made it in Spain, and we had to tweak the recipe a bit, but it turned out just fine.
Yum. I could eat this stuff all day.
Note on the recipe: They don’t really have Cool Whip here so I had to use real whipped cream, we had to freeze our own strawberries because frozen strawberries are not widely available, and Spain’s Philadelphia Original Cream Cheese has goat’s and sheep’s milk in it (is that true in the US as well? I’m burning with curiosity).
I have no idea who made up the first strawberry-pretzel salad recipe way back when, but she’s a genius!
- 2½ cups crushed stick pretzels (release some stress by sticking the pretzels in a plastic bag and slamming them with a mallet or jar)
- ¾ cup unsalted butter, melted
- 3 tsp. sugar
- 8 oz. heavy whipping cream (or 8 oz. Cool Whip)
- 1 cup sugar
- 8 oz. cream cheese
- 6 oz. envelope of strawberry Jell-O (or 2 3-oz. envelopes)
- 2 cups boiling water
- 2 10-oz. packages of frozen sliced strawberries (do not thaw), OR freeze your own strawberries the day before: Rinse 20 oz. of strawberries, slice them, and freeze them.
- Preheat oven to 350º F. Stir together the pretzels, butter, and sugar and then press the mixture onto the bottom of a 9×13-inch pan using the blade of a rubber spatula or the bottom of a glass (smear the bottom of the glass with butter to make it less sticky). Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and cool.
- If you’re using Cool Whip, skip down to the next step. If you’re using real cream, beat the whipping cream in a clean, cold bowl until soft peaks form. If you’re using a stand mixer, scoop out the whipped cream and put into another cold bowl (because you’ll need the mixer bowl for the next step). If you’re using a hand mixer, set aside the bowl of whipped cream.
- Beat together the sugar and cream cheese until smooth. Fold the whipped cream or Cool Whip into cream cheese mixture. When the pretzel crust is fairly cool, spread this mixture onto the crust.
- Place Jell-O powder into a large bowl. Pour 2 cups boiling water over powder and stir until powder is dissolved. Add frozen strawberries and stir to separate. Let sit for 5-8 minutes so that Jell-O starts to gel. If it takes longer than that, place the bowl in the refrigerator for a couple of minutes. (You want the Jell-O to be firm enough so that it won’t bleed into the bottom layers when you pour it into the pan, but not so firm that it’s not pourable). Once Jell-O is ready, pour it on top of whipped cream layer, and spread evenly.
- Cover the pan, refrigerate at least two hours to finish setting up the Jell-O, and serve.