February 11, 2013

Pigs In Salt-Free Blankets

Salt-Free Low-Sodium Pigs in Blankets

I’m not going to waste much time here, because we have some little piggies who are cold and need to be wrapped in blankets. STAT.

But I will take a moment to explain why I decided to makeover this little party treat. Between the piggy (mini hot dogs) and the blankets (prepared croissant rolls), one serving can equal over 1,760mg of sodium, more than the 1,500mg daily recommended intake for most Americans. And you haven’t even added in ketchup and other dipping sauces. Not to mention that these are appetizers, which means there is a whole sodium-filled meal waiting to be consumed after these little piggies have gone to your belly.

So traditional pigs in blankets are totally out this winter season. But a low-sodium version? Now that’s totally in style.

Even though this remixed recipe requires you to make your own “croissant dough,” it’s surprisingly easy and fun. And definitely a project you can get your kids, roommate, or bothersome neighbor involved with. But a note about the dough…you’re really going to have to channel your instincts here.

When it comes to adding the water, pour in a bit at a time until the dough is no longer dry but not sticky and wet. You want to hit that sweet spot right in between, where the dough feels pretty pliable and moist. And if you go overboard with the water, just add some flour back in and keep kneading until it’s right.

But again, enough talking. I don’t want these piggies to get cold.

So go find some piggies of your own at the market and cozy up with this crave-worthy, low-sodium treat.

Chow on.

PIGS IN SALT-FREE BLANKETS

adapted from Food.com Pigs in Blankets From Scratch

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons sodium-free baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon sodium-free baking soda (already adjusted for sodium-free baking soda)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt-free garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black paper
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
  • 3/4 cup FAGE Greek Yogurt
  • 1/2 to 1 cup water
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 thin, boneless pork chops cut into 18 mini hot-dog-like pieces

Directions

Heat the over to 400ºF. Grease a large baking sheet or cover it with parchment paper. Sift the dry ingredients (flour through ground black pepper) into a mixing bowl. Using your hands, rub the butter pieces into the dry ingredients until mixture is crumbly. Then, make a well in the dry ingredients and add the Greek yogurt and 1/2 cup of water. Using your hands, slowly bring the dry ingredients into the well, mixing it with the liquids until you can form a round ball of dough (much like making fresh pasta dough if you’ve done that before). Try not to “over mix” the dough, but do add more water if it feels dry or some stubborn flour won’t mix in. Add more flour if it gets to wet and sticky. When the dough reaches the right consistency, let it sit for 3 minutes.

Sprinkle a your counter or cooking surface with flour, sprinkle the dough ball with flour, and then roll it out into a 15 by 7-inch rectangle, that is about  1/4-inch thin. Note: If you’re like me, it’s impossible to roll a ball of dough into a perfect rectangle. So use a knife or dough cutter to trim the edges to make those right angles. Then, begin to cut  rectangle into thirds horizontally. Next slice each third into thirds vertically, this will give you 9 small rectangles. Slice each rectangle diagonally into two thin triangles. Or if none of this makes sense, cut the dough to look like those Pillsbury croissant triangles.

Now for the fun part. Make sure you have your beaten egg ready in a bowl and a pastry brush. And one at a time, brush a triangle with some egg. Place a pork bite on one edge of the triangle and then roll it up, so that the “croissant” trangle wraps over itself. Place the finished Pig in Blanket pointy side down on the cookie sheet. Continue until you’ve used up all your traingles. Then, if you have leftover dough and pork bites, reform a dough ball and repeat all the rolling, triangle-ing, and pork stuffing again until you’re all out of pigs or blankets or both.

Bake your piggies for 12 to 13 minutes, until golden brown. Cool on the sheet for 3 minutes then tranfer to a wire rack or serving dish. Perfect dipping sauces include sodium-free honey mustard, sodium-free ketchup (that you can find in my new cookbook, Sodium Girl’s Limitless Low-Sodium Cookbook), or Greek yogurt mixed with fresh dill.

+ Sodium Count: Pork top loin chop, boneless: 90mg per chop

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