Pretzels in Pennsylvania

Julius Sturgis founded the first commercial pretzel baking company in 1861.  The pretzels were hand twisted until the 50’s.  Most pretzel twisters were able to twist 50 pretzels a minute.  In about 2 minutes, I was able to roll out and twist one.  This was an entertaining tour! They still had most of the wooden equipment first used in the pretzel making process when it first began and soft pretzels are still being made today in this original location where the factory was created. We all had a soft pretzel after our tour, still hot from the oven.  These pretzels are not dipped in butter like most of the soft pretzels made elsewhere.  Fresh, warm bread warms my soul and these hit the spot.  But, I really loved the Little Cheesers, hard pretzels the best and bought two bags! Time to hit the country roads and head to lunch! IMG_7829 I’ve never seen so many corn fields in my life!  A small portion of the corn grown here is sold at the Amish markets, IMG_7821 but the majority is grown to feed the animals owned by the Amish.  Horses are their source of transportation and they use mules or horses in the fields for plowing.  Many own goats, sheep and pigs, milk or beef cattle and some even raise deer. We stopped for lunch at a Columbian restaurant.  Mike thought it would be a good experience for the kids and I was ecstatic for them to eat something other than chicken fingers, cheeseburgers, pizza or grilled cheese!  I could write an entire blog about kids menus.  I’ll save that for another time. I ordered a tamale and I wouldn’t have if I had known how big it was. I wasn’t that hungry after the pretzel.  When I order tamales at home they are tiny.  Not this one… IMG_7890.JPG The slaw on the side had jicama, carrots and cilantro and was very good!  The girls ordered lentil soup and loved it!  I wish I had ordered that as well. Our last event for the day was Cherry Crest Adventure Fun Farm.  What a blast for the kids! Giant bouncy pillows, potato sack slides, petting zoo, tractor pulls, hayrides, corn mazes, pig races and that’s only the beginning. Pre-dinner drinks for Mama and Daddy were much needed. IMG_7931 Dinner was our final “must-do” smorgasbord. IMG_7928 Smorgasbord = buffet.  Buffet = quantity, NOT quality.  Enough said.
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