There is an old recipe floating around the Charleston area that I have a severe addiction to. They're known as Ham Delights, Poppyseed Ham Rolls, and a variety of other names -- basically a tiny sandwich of ham, butter, onion, poppyseeds, cheese and flavorings. They are a staple in old church-lady cookbooks from around the area. I remember these being hugely popular and served at parties when I was young, on those little rectangular Pepperidge Farm party rolls that used to come in a tin pan, and that was the number one finger-food I wanted at my wedding. I was astonished to discover that my caterer, very well-established and known for their 'Charleston-style' food, had not had a request for such a thing since at least the 1980s. How could one of my favorites have been so quietly swept under the rug of time?! The caterer was able to dig up their old recipe and they were indeed on silver platters when the reception started. I was one happy bride with a couple of these rolls adorning my plate!
Since then, I've made a point to carry them to parties and to bring this great food back in my own small way. But they do have their drawbacks, mainly being there is an incredible amount of butter, it can be a pain to assemble, and it is just about impossible to find those little rolls anymore.
Enter the homemade pretzel method. It hit me like a lightning bolt one day as I was trying my hand at ham-and-cheese-filled pretzels so I could use up my leftover ham and cheese from a batch of Ham Delights I conveniently made the day before. Instead of just filling my pretzel dough with cheese and ham per the recipe, I thought I might as well throw the mustard and poppyseeds in and it might be a bit like my favorite snack! There was no need to slather on a layer of butter as I would have with the sandwich, because these just have a light brushing of butter at the end so you have the buttery taste without using much. The results were so appealing that I could have eaten the entire batch in one sitting. And I probably would have if Scottery didn't get home shortly after they were cool enough to eat.
I got the initial recipe over at the food blog pip + ebby. Only, before you roll these bad boys up, squirt yourself a wiggly line of yellow mustard and sprinkle on the poppy seeds! I also sprinkled the tops with poppy seeds after the butter brushing to add a little flair. Nom.