10 March 2021

Pretzels as a bakery food for Lent

Within the Christian Church, pretzels were 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 Christians were forbidden to eat eggs, lard, or dairy products such as milk and butter. As time passed, pretzels became associated with both Lent and Easter. Pretzels were hidden on Easter morning just as eggs are hidden today, and are particularly associated with Lent, fasting, and prayers before Easter.
Lots more info at the Wikipedia link.  Image: Jan Steen, Baker Arent Oostwaard and his wife Catherina Keizerswaar (1658) features pretzels, Rijksmuseum.


  1. Speaking of the religious significance of shape, I have heard that the three divisions of the pretzel symbolized the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. I don't know if that's the case, but I have heard that.

  2. That's a helluva widow's peak!


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