Salzstangen are a very well-known laugendauer pastry in Germany. These are rods about four millimeters thick and ten to 15 centimeters long. Their surface is shiny brown and sprinkled with salt. In the airtight packaging they have a long shelf life.
Salt sticks were invented in the USA
Like numerous other salty snacks, the pretzel stick originated in the United States of America. In 1935, a German company then introduced them to the European region. They bore the name “Salzletten”, under which they are still partly traded in Germany today. Especially in the 1950s, they were widely used as an accompaniment to cheese, beer and wine. In the former GDR, they were the snack cookies that were still most available and hardly inferior in taste to the products of the Western world. In the Saarland, the salt stick is often referred to as “Stixis” in the present day. This name comes from a former manufacturer.
The famous Laugendauer pastry
Salt sticks are produced almost exclusively in the food industry in Germany. There is hardly any domestic baking tradition for it, only in recent times own recipes were created. The basic ingredients used are salt, vegetable oil, yeast, flour, water and caustic soda. Salted sticks have a lot of carbohydrates. However, since they are not baked in fat, they are low in fat. This distinguishes them from other snacks, such as potato chips or peanut flips, which contain a lot of fat.
Brown and shiny due to caustic soda
The typical brown and shiny surface is created by dipping the salt stick in sodium hydroxide solution before baking. During the baking process, CO2 escapes, resulting in neutralization of the lye, and the corrosive effect disappears. Most newer home recipes omit this process.
A snack with little fat
As a snack, pretzel sticks are much lower in calories than chips because they have very little fat. However, they are also high in carbohydrates. If a snack is to be served once as part of a weight loss project, they are certainly suitable. In many places, the salt sticks are known as a home remedy for vomiting and diarrhea. They are used together with cola, but the mode of action is not proven.