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January 21, 2010

Smoked turkey or chicken sausage, a Pantry Special (Recipe: "chicks in blankets" with mustard dip)

Pantry Specials are great ingredients that find their way into my pantry from time to time, but not all the time. Easy Apps Week, Day Three. 

Chicks in blankets

A sausage is highly seasoned minced meat, stuffed into a casing, cooked or cured. A smoked turkey or chicken sausage, in addition to being all of the above, has the advantage of being lower in fat and calories than a traditional pork sausage, and because of that it's an occasional visitor in my pantry. Though sausages aren't exactly health food because they often have a high sodium and fat content, a single sausage can add a huge flavor punch to beans, pasta, stuffing or soup. When shopping for turkey or chicken sausages, read labels carefully or know your source, if pork-free is your goal; many non-pork sausages are stuffed into pork casings. Turkey or chicken sausages, cooked or uncooked, can be stored in the freezer for months. This is one Pantry Special that's available in your local supermarket.

Is this Pantry Special new to you?

Where to buy:
Aidells chicken and apple minis
(many supermarkets, Costco, etc.)
Hillshire Farms Turkey Lit'l Smokies
(supermarkets)

How to use smoked turkey or chicken sausages:
Baked pasta with chicken sausage
Chicken and sausage gumbo
Calico bean soup with smoked sausage in the slow cooker
Wild rice, mushroom and sausage soup
Shredded Brussels sprouts with winter squash and chicken apple sausage
Lentil and sausage soup with cabbage
Sausage, fennel and pear stuffing

Chicks in blankets

"Chicks in blankets"

I found mini smoked turkey sausages (sometimes called cocktail links) in my local supermarket. If you can't find them, buy regular smoked turkey or chicken sausages, in any flavor you like, and cut them into pieces 1-1/2 inches long. Then cut lengthwise in fourths, to make pieces the size of fat matchsticks. Everything in this recipe comes from the pantry, and proportions aren't important; what is important is to use pre-cooked sausage, or to cook your sausage thoroughly, according to package directions, before starting this recipe.

Ingredients

1 package mini turkey smoked sausages (defrost if frozen; cook if uncooked)
1 sheet frozen puff pastry, defrosted according to package directions
1 egg
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup strong grainy mustard

Directions

Preheat oven to 425°F. Line a sheet pan with a Silpat (silicone mat) or parchment paper.

Roll out your puff pastry on a lightly floured counter top. Cut into 1-1/2 inch squares. Place one piece of sausage (or one mini sausage) diagonally in the center of the square, and bring both ends of the pastry up around it to form the "blanket", as in the photos above. Place on the sheet pan, and continue until you've made as many as you wish.

Lightly beat the egg with 1 tsp of water, and paint the tops of the pastry. Place in the preheated oven and bake for 15 minutes or until brown.

Meanwhile, combine the mayonnaise and mustard to make a dipping sauce. Place in a serving bowl.

Remove the "chicks in blankets" from the oven, and serve hot with the mustard dipping sauce.


More recipes in The Perfect Pantry:
Chickpeas with sausage and peppers
Farfalle with spinach and sausage
Split pea, sausage and preserved lemon soup
Fregula sarda with leeks and sausage

Comments

my son is always so happy when i make these for him :) he have them for breaky once in a great while for something special he loves helpin me make these!

I know the British version called "Pigs in Blanket" and often make it for Soeren and his friends. Always very popular with different dips!

It is kind of irritating that the packaging is not marked "includes pork" or something along that line. A few years ago I learned the hard way when a friend who does not eat pork came for a visit and I served canapés using chicken/turkey sausages and salami. When she left I happened to look at the package and read that it contained pork meat too. I felt so guilty - yes I did tell her!

My mother made something similar to this using vienna sausages from a can and those biscuits you pop out of the container, so those of course were "pigs in blankets." I definitely like the idea of "chicks in blankets better!"

These remind me of get togethers my mom would have for her ladies group. Pigs in a blanket always seemed to be on the menu....but these have a dipping sauce!!!

I've got to get these! I love the traditional "pig" but could quickly develop a great fondness for these well wrapped chicks!

I know someone in my family who'd really love this. I'm saving this recipe. ;-) Thanks!

Paz

I used to gobble these up when I was a kid. But the ones we had were encased in a heavier dough rather than the lighter, flakier ones you have here. They look so good!

Kira, this would be a very special breakfast in our house, one our grandsons would love.

Meeta, as a person who doesn't eat pork, I'm always reading labels carefully. Here in the US the ingredients must all be listed, but they put the words in the smallest possible type so it's hard to read.

Kalyn, that was such a popular way to make these appetizers when I was a kid, too.

Val, absolutely, it was one of my mother's favorite appetizers to serve for bridge parties.

TW, I'm glad we have more options these days. Even my little town supermarket carries chicken and turkey sausages.

Paz, enjoy!

Susan, I remember those, more like a pizza dough, I think. These are really light -- and of course a bit buttery, which doesn't hurt!

These are so tasty right out of the oven. Sometimes I use croissant dough it comes out just as good!

So cute! I found mini pepperonis the other day that looked quite the same. Made my son similar piggies but with pizza dough and flavours - he loved them!
I'll keep my eye out for the chicken and turkey ones.

Love that you used frozen puff pastry here versus crescent roll dough. Couple that with turkey sausage & this is one appetizer I could easily eat too much of! :)

Since I don't eat pork smoked chicken and turkey sausage is always a must have in my pantry.
For the never ending office pot-lucks this recipes is always a hit. I think because so many of us remember them from childhood. But next time I'm going to use the puff pastry instead of the Pillsbury biscuits.

I was just thinking about Superbowl party apps... and I think this one may have to go on my list!

oh yes I think these little gems will always be in fashion, in craving, in season. I mean I love making these just for the crispy pastry and the dipping sauces.

since they are made with turkey sausages - you should call them "tom in a blanket" especially funny/corny if there is an actual person named Tom in the house!
:)
(ps I never met a sausage I didn't love!)

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  • My name is Lydia Walshin. From my log house kitchen in rural northwest Rhode Island, I share recipes that use what we keep in our pantries, the usual and not-so-usual ingredients that spice up our lives.

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