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Saturday, February 19, 2011

Retro and Still Fun: Pigs in a Blanket

A Mexican Chile Tray filled with Pigs in a Blanket--or Puerquitos en Cubijas!

Retro and Still Fun:  Pigs in a Blanket
by Victoria Challancin

Clearly, I'm not yet out of my "cute" mode...Last week when I had a request to translate into Spanish a recipe for Pigs in a Blanket, it occurred to me that yes, I just had to make them.  Had to.  It's been years since I had eaten them or even gave them a thought.  But I knew I could get Lit'l Smokies Cocktail Links here in San Miguel de Allende; plus, one of our local bakeries makes terrific, buttery puff pastry for sale.  Add a few interesting condiments...and you've got a party snack that everyone loves.  They just do.  And clearly it has nothing to do with health and everything to do with retro memories of tasty food from earlier times.

For my cooking class for Mexican cooks, I used a recipe from Martha Stewart for the piggies.  Well, that's not quite true as Martha's recipe called for including cheddar cheese and caramelized onions.  Yum...but not what I had in mind for class.  I cobbed together a recipe using Martha's basic guidelines and added to it a recipe for Curried Ketchup from Food Network.  Add to that's Avocado Mayonnaise and a dollop of a purchased, but oh-so-tasty, Mango, Pomegranate, and Chipotle Sauce and we turned out one tasty batch of cocktail goodies.  

I could see the puzzlement on the faces of the Mexican cooks in class when they read:  Puerquitos en Cobijas...the translation of Pigs in Blankets.  I suspect they thought it might be one of my "strange" experiments. The end result, however, was that somehow we managed to consume 48 piggies--in their attendant blankies.  Cute again.  I'm clearly on a roll.

Three Dipping Sauces:  Curried Ketchup, Avocado Mayonnaise, and Mango, Pomegranate, and Chipotle Sauce

Pigs in a Blanket
(Adapted from a recipe pigs from Martha Stewart)
Makes about 4 1/2 dozen

2 pounds (about 60) mini hot dogs (sometimes Costco carries “Little Smokies”)
1 large egg
All-purpose flour, for work surface
1 box (17 1/2 ounces) frozen puff pastry, thawed (from Mega, Costco, or Luna de Queso)
Poppy, sesame, or mustard seeds, optional
Mustard, Curried Ketchup, and Avocado Mayonnaise for serving

Prick hot dogs several times with the tip of a knife.  On a lightly floured work surface, working with one
 sheet of puff pastry at a time, roll into a 14-by-11-inch rectangle. Cut lengthwise into seven 
1 1/2-inch wide strips. Cut each strip crosswise into 4 rectangles, each about 3 1/2 inches long.

In a small bowl, beat together egg and 1 tablespoon water; set aside. Line baking sheets with 
parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat; set aside. Place a hot dog on the narrow end of one piece 
of pastry. Roll to enclose, brushing with some of the beaten egg to adhere; transfer to prepared baking 
sheet. Repeat process with remaining hot dogs and pastry. Brush the tops of puff pastry with egg and 
sprinkle with seeds, if using. Transfer to refrigerator and let chill for 15 minutes.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  Transfer baking sheets to oven and bake until puffed and golden, about 
20 minutes. Let cool briefly before serving with mustard, curried ketchup, and avocado mayonnaise.

Curried Ketchup

             (Recipe from Food Network)

Yield: 1 cup

1 pint cherry tomatoes (or 2 cups regular tomatoes—or even canned chopped tomatoes)
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons good quality curry powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
Pinch ground cloves

Put the tomatoes, vinegar, sugar, curry powder, salt, pepper and cloves into a saucepan and place 
over high heat. Bring to a boil, stir to dissolve the sugar and cook until the tomatoes have broken down 
and the mixture is slightly thick, about 10 minutes. Pour the mix into a food processor and pulse until 
smooth. Let cool to room temperature before refrigerating. Place in a decorative bowl to serve.

Avocado Mayonnaise
(Recipe from
1 avocado, flesh only
Juice of ½ lemon or lime
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
¼ cup grape seed oil (Costco) or vegetable oil

To make avocado mayonnaise, blend 1 avocado, the juice from 1/2 of a lemon, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper together in a food processor until smooth. Slowly add 1/4 cup of grape 
seed oil to the mixture, a little at a time, into the food processor. Blend until the mixture is fully mixed 
and smooth. Avocado mayonnaise can be used as a sandwich spread, vegetable dip or as a salad 


A perfect serving dish by famed Guanajuato ceramicist Gorky Gonzalez

...and a trio of brass spoons from Morocco

A happy marriage:  Pigs in a Blanket with Dipping Sauces

Victoria Challancin
Flavors of the Sun Cooking School
San Miguel de Allende, México

©Victoria Challancin.  All Rights Reserved.


Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

They are adorable! And I love the two dipping sauces too-they sound like they would be a great contrast! :D

Ben said...

How cute! I haven't had pigs in a blanket in so looooong, hehe. Now I'm hungry for some.

Nagi@RecipeTinEats said...

They are so cute and adorable! The dipping sauces look appetizing!