Not Your Momma’s Pretzel Salad

1 8-ounce bag mini pretzel twists
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 8-ounce pkg. cream cheese, room temperature, I mean it!
1 8-ounce container Cool Whip, thawed
2 4-ounce packages cherry Jell-O
1 12-ounce can pitted bing or morello cherries, or fresh, pitted, if in season

Pour the pretzels into the work bowl of your food processor. Pulse until they have been reduced to fine crumbs. Add sugar and melted butter, and pulse until combined. Turn out into a 9” x 13” pan pressing into the bottom. Bake for 10 minutes, remove from oven and allow to cool.

Wipe out the bowl of your food processor and add cream cheese and sugar. Pulse until combined. Add Cool Whip and process until smooth and creamy. Pour over the cooled crust.

Make Jell-O according to the “quickset“ directions. I use 2 cups of boiling water for two packages, and 1-3/4 cups of ice water. Place in refrigerator for 30 to 40 minutes, (checking at 30 minutes) until it has thickened, but is still pourable. Meanwhile, place the cherries in whatever design you see fit on top of the cream layer. When the Jell-O is ready (no more than 40 minutes), carefully pour over the cherries. Place pan in refrigerator and allow to chill completely, 3 to 4 hours. Cut into squares and serve. Keeps, refrigerated, for 3 days.