How to Make It
Finely chop the chocolate and place in a microwave-safe bowl or in the bowl of a double boiler over gently simmering water. Add shortening to the bowl.
To microwave the chocolate, heat the chocolate in 30 second intervals at 30% power, stirring after each interval, until chocolate is completely melted and smooth. To melt the chocolate in a double boiler, simply stir the chocolate over the gently simmering water until it is melted and smooth. Remove from heat.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Using small tongs, tweezers, or chopsticks, pick up one pretzel at a time and submerge the pretzel in the melted chocolate. Lift the pretzel out of the chocolate and gently tap the tongs agains the side of the bowl so the excess chocolate falls off of the pretzel. Place the pretzel on the prepared baking sheet. Top with whatever optional decorations you prefer. Repeat with remaining pretzels.
Once all of the pretzels are decorated, place the baking sheet in the refrigerator for 15 minutes to allow the chocolate to firm completely before serving. Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container.