So I have a confession… <hangs head>
I’ve been holding out on you guys… <hangs head lower>
It’s not that I didn’t want to share this, it’s that well um…
… um… I got nuffin. LOL I just honestly forgot and every time I remembered I wanted to write it up, something else came up.
Now the traditional Jello Pretzel Salad has been around since the early 50’s however I’m not sure if started out as a Pittsburgh dish and then traversed across the country or we adopted it. Either way I’m so happy to have this in my life!
Growing up my Mom would make the traditional one – layer of crushed pretzels, layer of strawberry jelly followed by Cool Whip.
With me, however, I can’t leave things well enough alone. You should all know that by now.
I need to take it up another notch as Emeril would say.
I like to push the limits and see just how far I can take it.
With this dish I wanted to make it more elegant, more fancy schmancy while keeping the base ingredients pretty much the same.
Food doesn’t have to be outrageously expensive to look and taste amazing.
As you can see, this doesn’t look like your Mama’s Jello Pretzel Salad. I’m not knocking the traditional one as that ROCKS but I wanted something… more. Plus I didn’t want that actual Jello layer but rather have it all infused together.
This tart was so amazing I can’t even begin to tell you. But before I get into the taste, I have to tell you about the presentation.
Next let’s discuss that drizzle sauce…
No seriously, we NEED to talk about it!
I literally could not stop eating it/licking it off of my fingers/almost licking the spoon it was still on while I was drizzling it… but I held back on that. Really! LOL
But this sauce was truly a gift from the God’s! It was so just… so just… so just perfect!
With Labor Day coming up and summer coming to an end, please do yourself, your family and me a favor… MAKE THIS!Print
- 2 cups crushed pretzels (maybe about 4 cups before you crush them)
- 1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) melted butter
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 2 cups hot fudge sauce, warmed
Cream Cheese Filling
- 8 ounces softened cream cheese
- 3/4 cup sugar (regular or confectioners) – I used confectioner’s
- 1 tsp vanilla bean extract
- 1 1/2 cups Cool Whip (or whipped cream).
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 Tbl corn starch
- 1 1/2 Tbl strawberry Jello mix
- 1 pint fresh strawberries
Make the crust
- Preheat oven to 350ºF.
- In a bowl combine the pretzels, butter and brown sugar.
- Line a pan with foil if not using a springform pan.
- Press firmly into a 10 inch tart pan or 8×8″ glass pan lined with buttered foil (with a 1″ overhang)
- Bake for 10 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and spread the hot fudge on the bottom.
- Cool completely ~30-45 minutes.
Make the cream cheese filling
- Beat the cream cheese and sugar until smooth.
- Add vanilla.
- Fold in the Cool Whip and spread into completely cooled crust.
Make the strawberry topping
- Combine the sugar, water, and corn starch and bring to a full, rolling boil on the stove.
- Boil for two minutes, whisking constantly.
- Remove from heat.
- Add the Jello and whisk until combined.
- Allow to cool slightly.
- Arrange the berries on top of the cream cheese layer and then drizzle the Jello mixture over the berries, trying to cover each berry.
- Refrigerate uncovered at least 3 hours or until the Strawberry Topping jello layer is firm.
Keywords: parties, pittsburgh, pretzels, jell-o salad, summer, berries, dessert