I remember being quite surprised at the mild winter we were having in New England in 2017. Nonetheless, we finally saw our first official snow / ice day off that season come January. Trust me, the boys could not have been more ecstatic to have been able to stay home from school. Of course, that begged the question….what did one do with three rambunctious boys on an unexpected day off? I needed to come up with some kind of snow day activities. So, I thought we should bake something delicious together!
Rise and Shine – It’s A Snow Day!
You have to understand MY boys when they were young. MY boys were not your typical kids. They were not the type to sleep in, lounge around and do nothing. They didn’t even like to go out to play in the white stuff. No, my adorable, crazy, driven and task-oriented children were always up at the crack of dawn to get things done ~ BY CHOICE!
I remember that day vividly. My oldest was up at his normal time (5 AM, the same time I began my work-from-home), showered and on the computer to work on his AP Statistics. My middle son was up because he just couldn’t sleep anymore. Now, my youngest ~ well, he hardly ever slept in, so there’s no need to explain that. By 8 AM, all boys were up, showered, dressed, fed and had already crossed off a handful of tasks from their personal check lists. Yes, I know they’re strange, but it’s okay. They are mine to cherish forever and ever and then some.
No Time Off For Mom and Dad!!
Now, the boys had off. However, Mom and Dad didn’t. Hubby was relieved of his duties of taking the boys to school that morning. However, he still hopped in his truck and headed to the office for a full day. I have been working from home for years, which means it is always there waiting for me to accomplish.
Fortunately, the boys were well trained on how to manage things around the house. They worked on daily chores in the morning. After that, they read, played board games, built with Legos, etc. They were very good at occupying themselves and were very aware that asking to play video games was out of the question until mid afternoon. Get this, they even did me a solid and worked on laundry (not to mention shoveled!). This allowed me to focus on work. Love these guys!! I think I’ll keep ’em.
Let’s Do Something Fun!
Noon came and it was time for lunch. At that point, I had two who could cook, so I didn’t have to worry about leaving my desk to ensure they ate properly. However, I was feeling a little guilty about all the hard work and wanted to do something with them. I knew I couldn’t take the time to watch a movie and leaving the house was out of the question because of the ice. I had been wanting to make homemade pretzels for weeks after seeing a similar recipe circulating around social media. So – I convinced myself it was okay to step away from the computer and spend about 30 to 60 minutes just hanging out with them, baking pretzels together.
So, we did.
Pretzel Making Together
I had one preheat the oven, take out the baking sheet, foil and spray. Another one gathered ingredients (refrigerated pizza dough, shredded mozzarella, garlic powder, oregano, shredded parmesan and butter). The third prepped to melt the butter. I took care of cutting the strips of pizza dough that would ultimately become our not-so-pretty pretzel creations. That was probably the hardest part, working with the dough.
That’s why I took on this particular task.
Once they were cut, we added the mozzarella in a very thin line down the center. We then pinched up the sides ~ not my favorite part of the recipe! Cheese was going everywhere, to be quite honest. Once pinched together, we formed the long strips into pretzel-like shapes on the baking sheet (more detailed instructions below). At the same time, my oldest was melting the butter. We then buttered the tops of the pretzels (and a few pretzel bites from leftover dough), sprinkled on the garlic powder, oregano and parmesan and tossed them in the oven. They baked at 400ºF for twenty minutes.
At the fifteen minute mark, I had my oldest heat up some marinara…and we were ready to go.
They honestly tasted just like pizza!! It was a great way to spend a piece of their snow/ice day. The ice made it challenging to go outside and my boys are not that much into snowball fights and snowmen anymore. So, this made for a great activity.
From there, it was time for their video games and enjoying the rest of the day in our pjs.
Now, I have to confess that we don’t seem to have snow days anymore now that we’ve moved south. I’m still curious, though ~ what do your snow days look like? Do you have a “snow-day” schedule or do you take opportunity to simply let the day unfold? Share with me some of the fun, unique things you do when your kiddos have a snow/ice day off from school.
Food allergy tidbit!
This was a great treat for our egg, peanut and tree nut allergy son! He loved making them and, well, eating them was even better. We were able to save some money and use a lot of our own store brand ingredients, such as the pizza dough (though you could use brand name, too, which may provide a little bit better stability in the dough), mozzarella, parmesan, garlic and marinara. We simply just read the ingredient labels to ensure there were no allergens or disclaimers. All safe and much enjoyed!!
A great way to combine two delicious favorites - pizza and pretzels - into one! It's a winner for anyone who loves their carbs topped with a little sauce and cheese.
- 1 tube pizza dough
- 2.5 cups shredded mozzarella
- 3 tbsp melted butter
- 2-4 tsp garlic powder
- 2 tbsp oregano
- 1 cup shredded parmesan
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Stretch the dough out onto a clean surface and cut into equal strips - approximately 8.
Stretch each strip out in both width and length - making sure to not stretch too thin.
Sprinkle shredded mozzarella down the center of each strip.
Fold and pinch the sides of the dough together around the cheese, including the ends.
Now it's time to form a pretzel shape with your dough. Take the ends of the strip and make a U” shape. Twist the ends around each other twice and connect them to the bottom of the “U” shape.
Place each pretzel onto a greased baking sheet.
Take the melted butter and generously brush it onto each pretzel.
Sprinkle each with garlic powder, oregano and shredded parmesan to your liking.
Bake in the oven at 400 degrees for approximately 20 minutes, or until golden brown
Serve with a side of warm marinara and enjoy!!!!