The Lenten pretzel is an ancient Christian tradition. The early Roman Christians observed a strict fast during Lent, not eating any foods derived from animals. Even such staples as butter, eggs, milk, cheese and cream were forbidden. Therefore a special bread was created made only of flour and water and shaped to resemble two arms folded in prayer. It was called bracellae or little arms and today has come to be known as the pretzel. It is still traditional in many nations in Europe to eat pretzels during the Lenten season and there is a growing movement in the U. S. to revive this lovely custom. Make this easy casserole and review the place of the pretzel in Easter history!