Monday, November 30, 2009
If there's one tried and true appetizer I can think of, it's Mini Pigs in Blankets. These little guys are especially popular with men and children (who often turn up their noses at frou-frou canapes), but- let's face it- we ladies like them too. So universally popular are these mini pigs that we elected to have them as one of the hors d'oeuvres at our (fancy-pants) wedding.
These are super easy to whip up if you grab a bag of Hillshire Farms Lil' Weiners ("Go Meat!") and a couple tubes of crescent rolls. Simply cut each crescent triangle into three skinny triangles and wrap away. These aren't "pricey" ingredients, but they aren't dirt-cheap either. An even more frugal and especially delicious way to go? Make your own rolls and simply cut full-size dogs into mini pieces.
I use Kate's recipe for Homemade Crescent Rolls. (If you've never made these, you simply must try them. I think the potato flakes might be the secret- this recipe is the only reason we keep them in the house!) I make 1/2 of her recipe to yield 64 mini pigs in blankies.
I follow her direction and mix up the dough. Here's what it looks like after the first 15 minute rise:
I split my (half) batch of dough into two even blobs and roll each into a circle. I keep mine pretty thin- less than 1/4 inch. Let it rest for a few minutes before you cut it. That helps prevent it from shrinking and curling on you. (Took me a long time to learn that step...) Once it's rested for about five minutes, use a sharp knife or (even easier) a pizza wheel to cut it into 32 narrow wedges. Set a small square of American cheese on the edge of each wedge.
Quarter up 16 hotdogs to yield 64 segments.
Wrap up one quarter in each wedge and set on greased cookie sheets or pizza pans or whatever you've got handy. Just make sure you give them some rising room!
Cover and allow to rise in a warm spot for about an hour. Here they are after the second rise:
Bake in a 350 degree oven for 10 minutes- I like to do 5 minutes on the bottom shelf followed by 5 on the top to ensure even browning but you could probably eliminate that step if you find it to be a hassle.
Cool on racks or a clean dish towel on the table, whatever's handy for you!
Now head on over and visit Jen over at Balancing Beauty and Bedlam as she hosts our appetizer course of the Second Annual Bloggy Progressive Dinner. Link up your own appetizer recipe and check out all the great ideas others have to share!
If you missed my festive drink recipes yesterday (and all the wonderful ones other bloggers linked up!), head right here to check that out.
We'll have lots of wonderful recipes throughout the week. For the full schedule, please click the button at the top of this post to see the outline our lovely hostess, Amy, has provided.