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French in a Flash

French in a Flash (Super Bowl): Hotdog Vol-au-Vent

French in a Flash (Super Bowl): Hotdog Vol-au-Vent

[Photograph: Kerry Saretsky]

Are pigs in a blanket French? Not really. And are these really vol-au-vents? Not exactly. But since the Super Bowl isn't French either, I thought we could take a few liberties.

These are really mini versions of something called Saucisson en Croûte, or sausage in a pastry crust—very similar to the UK's sausage roll. For this version, I slice up all-American hot dogs (a personal favorite) and roll them up, along with a homemade sweet onion Dijon mustard, inside a blanket of puff pastry. Sprinkle with poppy seeds, bake, and you have a flavorful and delicious, but unpretentious, little combination of French and American standbys. While you could go out and buy a bunch of frozen pigs, I like that slightly glam touch of making your own—they look homemade and cozy. I can also choose all-beef or organic hot dogs that get so crisp around their cut edges—a definite step up from the little cocktail sausages in the frozen variety. And that sweet onion mustard is so spicy, soft, and, of course, sweet that everyone will know you made them.

I could eat these everyday. To me, a party isn't a party without pigs in a blanket.

About the author: Kerry Saretsky is the creator of French Revolution Food, where she reinvents her family's classic French recipes in a fresh, chic, modern way. She also writes the The Secret Ingredient series for Serious Eats.

French in a Flash (Super Bowl): Hotdog Vol-au-Vent

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About This Recipe

Yield:makes 12
Active time:15 minutes
Total time:40 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 sheet (1/2 box) frozen puff pastry, thawed but cold
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 1/2 yellow onions, finely sliced on a mandoline
  • 3/8 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 4 hot dogs, cut into thirds
  • 1 egg, beaten with a splash of water
  • Poppy seeds (optional)
  • Fleur de sel

Procedures

  1. 1

    Thaw the puff pastry in the refrigerator overnight. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Heat the canola oil in a wide sauté pan over medium heat, and add the onions, sugar, and salt. Sauté, stirring often, until the onions are golden and soft, 7 to 8 minutes. While they are cooking, add 1 tablespoon of water whenever the bottom of the pot gets brown. Drain the onions of extra oil or liquid in a paper towel. Stir the dry onions with the mustard in a small bowl.

  2. 2

    Cut the puff pastry in 1 1/2-inch strips. Then cut each strip in half the short way. Spread some of the onion-mustard mixture on each strip, and roll each strip around 1 piece of hot dog. Place seam-side-down on a rimmed baking sheet, leaving space for the pastry to puff. Repeat with the remaining pastry, onion mixture, and hot dogs.

  3. 3

    Use a pastry brush to lightly brush each pig in a blanket with eggwash. Top with poppy seeds and a touch of fleur de sel. Bake until puffed, golden, and crisp: 22 to 25 minutes. Serve right out of the oven. You could easily make as many multiples of this recipe as your want. I would budget 3 per person.

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