Simple Gifts

I’ve recently finished an in-house position for a client and wanted to properly send myself off with thoughtful notes for everyone.

Inspired by my love for salt and the Office Holiday Bake-off, I figured what better way than contribute to the December influx of sweets to remind everyone how much I appreciate them.

On a limited budget, I wanted to impress with novelty, create through time spent (not including store-bought lines), and of course taste!

I give you…

Marisa’s Skinnies!

I love salt with my sweet, so I fantasized all the ways I could incorporate potato chips, I landed on chocolate covered pretzels topped in crushed chips.

To be honest, the recipe kept evolving as I decided my own taste preferences, but below I show you how to make Skinnies of your choosing.

Marisa’s Skinnies:

  • Dark chocolate-covered pretzels topped with crystalized rose petals
  • Dark chocolate-covered pretzels topped with crushed cashews
  • Dark chocolate-covered pretzels topped with crushed potato chips
  • Dark chili-infused chocolate-covered pretzels topped with crystalized rose petals
  • Dark chili-infused chocolate-covered pretzels topped with crystalized basil
  • Dark chili-infused chocolate-covered pretzels topped with crystalized crushed potato chips
  • Dark chili-infused chocolate-covered pretzels topped with crystalized crushed cashews
  1. Crush your topping ingredients first, anything can work for this. Sprinkles in color theme, bacon bits, sugar, pink salt, candy… anything goes with Skinnies.
  2. Prepare your assembly line. For me this was placing my topping piles alongside where I would dip pretzels and subsequently set them to dry. I recommend using strips of tinfoil to later transport them to the freezer.
  3. Chop and break chocolate into pieces. As far as chocolate goes- you’re the expert. I wanted spicy so I mixed chili powder. A great cheat here is buying pre-made flavored chocolates, that way you know the taste is also pre-approved. Mine was a little guess and check- not bad if you’re me, bad if you have a problem eating half the chocolate you intend to gift!
  4. Using LOW HEAT, melt your chocolate, the pot on my first attempt turned the chocolate gritty and a tinge burnt. The second time on little to no heat my chocolate turned to the waterfall cascade you see in Twix commercials.
  5. Now the really hard part. Dip your pretzel, hold for a moment to congeal, and roll it in your topping choice. Then set to dry.
  6. I really can’t stress how easy this project was!
  7. The only secret I learned was that in order to fully set the chocolate you must freeze it. I put the pieces in my freezer for about 10 minutes each and they were good to go even a day later.

As you will see in the slides, I wanted to personalize each note. For those I didn’t work as closely with I wrote: their name, a special thought of how I appreciated them, thank you, and wishes for happy holidays. I included longer thank you notes for my direct team and stapled all of these to the brown packaging bags after I’d filled them. My “tags” were ‘upcycled’ paper bag cut into tags.

I also decorated each bag with an easy one color design, just to add a little pop.

I hope you enjoy – sampling the treats myself, I can tell you.. we all certainly did!

Crushing mallet

Using a meat tenderizer I crushed each topping to a fine dust, larger pieces will inevitably remain but the dusting covers your chocolate for a beautiful effect.

After dipping, roll your chocolate pretzels into topping piles.
After dipping, roll your chocolate pretzels into topping piles.
My first batch was taking up too much room so I placed them on another cutting board to get into the freezer.

My first batch was taking up too much room so I placed them on another cutting board to get into the freezer.

By placing them on tin foil, even the clinging Skinnies could be removed by peeling the foil away- these thin pretzels are fragile so any force would break them.

By placing them on tin foil, even the clinging Skinnies could be removed by peeling the foil away- these thin pretzels are fragile so any force would break them.

The only way to congeal them all!

While they froze I decorated bags and wrote my notes to easily assemble everything.

While they froze I decorated bags and wrote my notes to easily assemble everything.

Only packing about 6 per person, the bags were easy to carry, not too long to make, and the perfect (for almost everyone!) morning treat! I’m sure it’s great for afternoons as well.

Marisa's Skinnies. :)

Marisa’s Skinnies. 🙂

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