Who can we thank for putting the first pig in a blanket?

Almost every culture in the world has some kind of meat wrapped in cookie dough, but how did these dough-covered hot dogs become a staple at barbecues and parties?

Forget Thanksgiving. The most gluttonous day of the year is Super Bowl Sunday, where bowl after bowl and plate after plate of finger bacchanalia is enough to make even the most insane. responsible for choosing the TGI Friday breakfast (and certainly the ancient Romans). ). And so, for the week leading up to game day, we’ll be serving up our own menu of science fiction, backstories and the wonders of snacking that can’t be beat at the biggest sporting event. the year. Read the full story here.

What could be more festive than a pig in a blanket? It looks like nothing.

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When I Googled them (the way I do research on all my stories), the first one THREE The answer said “it’s not a holiday without a pig in a blanket.” Whether you’re tailgating a football game or, uh, watching a football game at home, these little pig snacks are a must. I personally like to whip up a plate of them and then eat the whole plate by myself while watching Below Deck. We all celebrate.

The pork in the blanket is cut into a hot dog rolled in a dough ball or (if you are disgusting, like me) it is rolled out of the tube. Once fried, a small bite is inviting, the tips of the hot dogs gently poke out of the golden brown bread dough as if luring you in. good time. Plus, cut the hot dogs up, so you can stop not knowing how many hot dogs you’re eating at once if that’s a big deal to you. On every level – aesthetic, culinary, ideological – recognizably, American is wonderful. But where did the dish come from?

In 1957, marketing materials and the fictional character Betty Crocker were released Betty Crocker snacks for boys and girls, in which a pig in a blanket appears for the first time. Betty suggests them as fun and easy things to let your kids do when you pop a few Valium and wonder where the hell your husband is (I say). In keeping with the science and convenience of American home cooking at the time, even this ancestor of modern pig-in-a-blanket technology required pre-made biscuits. Hot dogs are also called “wieners”, which is funny, because they are penises. Betty’s classification of pigs in blankets as “lunch or dinner” is also noteworthy. We Americans may be a clumsy bunch, but at least we now know that we can’t have a pig in a blanket as our whole lunch, even if we do.

Pigs in blankets may have made their literary debut in this book, but they’ve probably been around for a long time, even without a cute name. As for how long they’ve been around, or who created them, the trail quickly becomes murky. Gertrude Strohm’s Cookbook author The Universal Cookery Book: Practical Recipes for Home Use It includes a “pig in a blanket” recipe, but it’s a different and more unique dish than today’s Super Bowl party food: big meat-stuffed oysters and fried, “a great appetizer for lunch or dinner.” tea.” (What went on with an American lunch?)

The trail goes back again with kolaches, a Czech immigrant food that is still popular in Texas where many of the immigrants settled in the 19th century. Kolaches are puff pastry with a yeasty center in which the industrious baker can fill with the filling of his choice, usually sausage. In fact, the filling of kolaches was meant to be sweet, but these immigrants must have noticed how much pork their neighbors had bought fresh and prepared accordingly. In fact, what we now call kolaches may be closer to another Czech dish called the sausage, consists of meat encased in a sweeter and sweeter dough than that which covers most kolache. Anyway, as new as it may sound, sausage kolache is like a pig in a blanket.

It’s hard to trace the dish back to where it came from, probably because “meat wrapped in a cake to make it easier” is a dish that all meat-eating cultures have. In fact, the history of the construction of human civilization is a history of backward work. People doing this work needed a quick and easy burst of protein to get the job done, or die of exhaustion. Sausage is the best protein in culture, which is an ancient preparation that has made animal dressings tasty, healthy and long-lasting.

Pigs in a blanket are pierogies are empanadas are pastelitos de carne are lop cheung bao. Perhaps their story is not so much about place, but about circumstances. The reality is the amount of heavy lifting that the average worker had to do in those days, and wherever the location was – hence the story of the origin of the food that would evolve into the pig in a blanket we know and we love. But there are still several legends that are worth telling, even if they are as apocryphal as the famous food story.

A legend says that in the early 1600s, field workers began stuffing meat into British cornmeal to keep themselves full during the workday. This may be true, but it seems like a stretch to say. him there is created internally there is bread like a “pig in a blanket”. We can compromise and call this dish the grandfather of the tailgate classic.

Another legend says that this English version is the real one no originally created by these field workers. Instead, it came to them from somewhere in Asia, via the Silk Road. The Asian version called for fish instead of sausage for the pastry, and the Anglo-Saxons replaced the fish with red meat according to the local cuisine. That too is certainly doable considering how much it costs is passed from culture to culture along the Silk Road (including, presumably, the bubonic plague). But is this fish cake really a pig in a blanket, or just the great-great-great-grandfather?

Somehow, Asian bakers have taken the pig under the blanket and run with the concept for years. Chinese hotdog buns have been around for decades in bakeries in various Chinatowns. Hot dogs still appear regularly in Chinese, Korean, and Japanese buns, at least in New York restaurants. Popular Chinatown bakery Golden Steamer has long served buns with every filling imaginable, including a bun that looks simple until you bite into it, when — surprise! — it’s a pig in a blanket, Chinese style. The rich batter used in the Chinese hotdog buns also deserves a shout out. It’s delicious: sweet, airy, soft, it goes well with the salty meat of a hot dog. It beats Pillsbury crescent rolls by a mile.

A recent truck legend points to the creation of the dish for a restaurant on Route 66 in Oklahoma. The problem with this myth is that the Pig in a Blanket must have been created about 10 years after his star appearance in the Betty Crocker comic book. The mystery eater may have perfected the snack like a regular eater, but couldn’t create it. That said, truckers continue to contribute to pig in blanket culture, like The Crafty Trucker’s pig in truck blanket recipe. (These are low-carb, which feels like a violation of blanket integrity, but this one I give it, because I have never – and never will – cook in a truck.)

As for what’s new on the scene, look no further than Pizza Hut’s hot pizza, whose crust is made from pork rings in a blanket. Although this delicious abomination may seem American, it comes to us from… Pizza Hut Japan! Maybe the pig in the blanket is an Asian invention! However, regardless of where they came from, or whatever name your grandma originally called them, pigs in blankets have become an American staple.

As they say, it’s not a holiday without a pig in a blanket.