Pigs and Princes

Prinskorv (prince sausage) are snappy little Swedish sausages in natural casings. They are common on the Julbord (Christmas table) and tasty alongside eggs and pancakes for breakfast. If you don't have a Scandinavian butcher (or IKEA Marketplace) in your neighborhood, substitute your favorite old-fashioned skin-on wieners.

When I was a kid my grandpa had to explain to me why Pigs in Blankets (in Minnesota that typically meant sausages wrapped in pancakes) were called pigs. I understood bacon came from pigs, and bacon was good, so pigs were good, but it hadn't occurred to me that sausages and bacon were siblings. And why weren't pancakes rolled around bacon on breakfast menus? Since then I've eaten a variety of Pigs in Blankets... well, actually I've eaten pretty much the same piggies encased in a wide variety of blankets: from puff pastry to fried wonton wrappers... a comforter of steamed dumplings, a duvet of french toast, and even a sad cold quilt of cabbage.

A bundle of pretty pink prinskorv and a batch of rye dough becomes a Swedish version of Pigs in Blankets. Don't expect a fluffy comforter. The rye dough is flavored with orange, fennel, and caraway and crisps in the oven. Serve with Lingonberry-Orange Mustard to enhance the spices.

Princes in Blankets (Prinskorv i Filt)
1 package yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)
2/3 cup warm water
1 teaspoon honey
1 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for kneading
2/3 cup rye flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon each fennel and caraway seeds
Zest from 1 orange
2 pounds Prinskorv or similar small sausages (about 20)

Stir together yeast, water, and honey; let rise until foamy, about 5 minutes. Combine flours, salt, seeds, and zest; add yeast mixture and stir until sticky dough forms. Add more flour as necessary to make soft dough. Note: rye flour will make dough a bit craggy. Form dough into ball and place in oiled bowl. Cover and rise to double; about 2 hours.

Divide dough into 20 equal portions. Roll into thin squares and wrap around individual sausages. Set 1-inch apart on greased baking sheets. Cover and rest 30 minutes.

Bake sausages in 400 degree oven until dough is golden and crisp.

Lingoberry-Orange Mustard
1/2 cup Dijon mustard
1/2 cup lingonberry preserves
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 teaspoon orange zest

Combine well.


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