The Dish


This spring we went to a family reunion of sorts. As all the “kids” get older and more spread out geographically, my aunt Rose is set on keeping us together as much as possible.

Rose and her family own a large lake house in upstate South Carolina. With a dock, big decks and lots of bedrooms, it offers the prefect place for this gathering.  The tradition started last year but Brian and I couldn’t go. So this year, we planned our spring around the “cousins weekend” as it is dubbed.

The trip started with a late-night arrival. We flew into Atlanta on the last flight of the day arriving close to 11 p.m. When my cousin Erin picked us up we debated briefly our options: drive through to the lake about two hours away or spend the night in Atlanta and get up early. Driving through won out and we pulled in just before 2 a.m.

We woke up to a view of a beautiful lake, the warm sun and a kitchen full of goodies. Flying in from Jackson, we weren’t able to contribute very much to the stockpile. I did, however, bring some of the Bunnery’s pancake mix. (We made these one morning and they were incredible!)

Thankfully, we are a family who care about food. So, in addition to the puzzle playing, game of charades, waterskiing, shuffleboard playing and cocktails, we spent the weekend eating.  Everyone brought something, contributed to a meal and helped cook and clean. With 12 of us staying in the house, we needed all hands on board!

The family dinners included a barbeque with ribs and chicken, sweet farm-stand corn, and salad. Grilled salmon with potatoes and spinach was another night. Lunch consisted of a smorgasbord of salads and spreads (chicken, pimento cheese, hummus, and tabuli among others).

And then there was dessert, of course, and snacks.  Despite the walks, swims and games, never were we ever hungry even for a second.

Of all the snacks and treats, one of our favorites was made by my sister Lee. This combination of pretzels, chocolate and a buttery caramel sauce was perfectly salty and sweet with the added bonus of chocolate for the chocoholic in all of us.

Lee said she had made these bars a few times before from a recipe she found online and they have always been a big success. They are easy to make and can be done ahead and stored in the refrigerator. She found the recipe on a website called With an origin like that, how can the recipe not be good?

It is amazing when you can throw together a simple but delicious “homemade” dish that tastes good, takes no time and contains ingredients you already have in the house. Lee doubles the recipe as they (I am not sure weather to call them a bar, a cookie or simply dessert/treat) are so good, they disappear quickly.  These treats would be great for an afternoon snack or a weekend camping trip.

Chocolate covered toffee pretzels


  • Enough mini pretzels to make a double layer on the bottom of a small baking dish (12 x 12 inch glass dish)
  • 1/4 C butter
  • 1/4 C brown sugar
  • 1 T peanut butter
  • 1/2 C chocolate chips


  • 1. Make a double layer of pretzels in the bottom of a small foil-lined and non-stick sprayed baking dish.
  • 2. Combine the butter, brown sugar and peanut butter in a small saucepan and whisk until melted together.
  • 3. Pour over the pretzels in the pan and bake at 425 for about 5-6 minutes.
  • 4. Remove from oven, cover with chocolate chips. Let stand 3-4 minutes or until chocolate chips are melty. Then spread them over the pretzels with a spatula. Let cool then break into pieces.



About Author

Writer. Cook. Hockey player. Skier. Snowboarder. Mountain biker. Mother of two great danes. Wife. Marketing expert. And, most fulfilling, Co-editor of Dishing!

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