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Wittenberg Piggies

30 Oct

Reformationstag is tomorrow!  Our church had her annual Reformation Day celebration and dance last night.  It was tons of fun!  I was pretty bummed that Peter and I wouldn’t be able to host a grand Oktoberfest dinner this year as I’d been hoping to, so I decided that the next best thing would be to make these little treats to bring to the dance:

After much deliberation – and accepting that my German is far too limited for me to come up with some cute alliteration in German – I decided they should be called Wittenberg Piggies.  They are delicious little beer brats wrapped in pretzel dough and served with a slew of different mustards on the side.  Seriously, you’d have to be a Socinian to not enjoy these.

Wittenberg Piggies

Ingredients for dough:

  • 4 cups bread flour
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 cup warm milk
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 1/4 tsp instant yeast

Ingredients for pretzel bath:

  • 2 quarts water
  • 2 tbsp baking soda

Additional Ingredients:

This is a bit of a time-consuming recipe, unless you have lots of little hands to help you out.  I found it helpful to cut up the brats and brown them on a frying pan on medium-high heat the night before.  Then I just stuck them in a container in the fridge.  I did not find that the sausages being chilled affected how the dough rose when I prepared them.

The dough, of course, should be made the day you are going to enjoy the piggies:  add all dough ingredients into the pan of a bread machine in the order suggested by the manufacturer.  Program the bread machine for the dough cycle and press “start.”  When the machine has completed the cycle, the dough should be smooth and elastic.

Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper and lightly spray them with cooking spray.  Set aside.

Turn the risen dough onto a clean counter top.  Do not flour the counter top, but keep a little floured area to the side, to dab the dough in.  If you don’t use any flour at all, the dough will just stick to the counter rather than roll nicely.  But if you flour the counter you’re rolling the dough on, the dough will get too dry and won’t roll nicely either.

Use a bench knife or spatula to cut off a small section of dough.  Keep the unused portion of dough covered with a clean towel so it won’t dry out.

Begin to roll the small section of dough into a narrow snake (its diameter should be about 1/4 to 1/2 of an inch).  Beginning with one end of one brat piece, wrap the dough snake around the brat, snip off the end of the dough when finished, and place the brat seam-side down on one of the cookie sheets.  Continue doing this until all the little brats are wrapped.  Without worrying about perfection, try to wrap them as well as you can, because the dough can detach from the brats when put in the baking soda bath, if not wrapped well.  When all brats are wrapped, let them rise uncovered for about a half hour.

While waiting for the dough to rise, preheat the oven to 400° and bring 2 quarts of water to a boil in a large pot.  Add the baking soda to the boiling water.  Carefully lower up to 8 piggies into the boiling water – don’t drop them from too high.  Allow the piggies to simmer for about 45 seconds, by which time you will notice the dough puffing.  Using a slotted spoon, scoop out the piggies one at a time, give them a little shake to remove excess water, and place them back on the cookie sheets.

When all piggies have been bathed, arrange them on their cookie sheets so that the dough – rather than the brats – are facing upwards.  Brush the tops of the piggies with the egg/water, and lightly sprinkle them with the coarse salt.

Bake the piggies for about 16 minutes each, or until the tops are a nice glossy golden brown.  Remove from the oven and transfer to a pretty platter.  Serve with lots of mustard varieties on the side, and enjoy!

October Blues

7 Oct

Luna Plena

6 Oct

It looks like the next full moon is October 22nd, but I got impatient and made a cosmetic bag to accessorize with it a little early.  It’s made from 100% polished cotton, and my favorite part about it is the fact that, right down to the zipper, it’s made entirely from a skirt I’d bought from Forever 21 a couple years ago, which I pretty much never wore because I found it was way too short for me (yes I know, I need to try clothes on before I leave the store).

I just think it’s so fun and October-y.  I would keep it for myself, but I already have a toiletry bag, and I refuse to become one of those women who, in the name of de-cluttering her home, actually ends up cluttering it with storage containers and bags.

So it’s in my Etsy.  Give it a home, you don’t want to risk clashing with the full moon.  It’s very embarrassing.

Euro Shams for $8

25 Mar


I wanted to buy some euro shams since our euro pillows have been naked for a looong time.  So I went shopping and found lots of ones I liked, but none of them were under $35 (unless I wanted to buy just plain ones at Bed Bath and Beyond for $15 each).  So since I didn’t want anything too fancy, I bought a twin sheet from Target for $8 and made two shams with flowers.

My mom has lots of pearl and mother of pearl buttons, which are my favorite part.  I’d like to make a couple shams that are really covered with flowers (as long as my husband wouldn’t be too embarrassed to let anyone in our room), but as little time as it took to make these, it would take about 20 times longer to do that.  So maybe I’ll just slowly add them one or two at a time.

More of Katie’s Shower

6 Feb

I want to throw an indoor garden party of equal beauty.  I think I did a pretty good job decorating this shower, if I do say so myself.  I am completely open to color suggestions.  What would brighten your mood in the middle of winter?

I’ve been tagged too?!

6 Jul

I was actually tagged over at Love2BInspired to complete one of those “10 things about you” posts.  I am pretty sure that is the very first time anyone’s ever tagged me to do one! So I was pretty excited when I got a little message letting me know I’d been tagged!

Ok, let’s see:

1. I am very unsure about my home decor tastes. I decorate my home kinda country, and I wish it were more modern. I do modern, and I wish it were more warm and cottage-like! I’m still trying to figure out exactly what my style is.

2. I was an Au Pair in Munich, Germany when I was 17. It was an interesting experience.

3. I feel most fulfilled and happy when I’m working in my tiny little home and taking care of my husband in that way.

4. I love the color white, but I’ve never been able to get into the shabby chic thing.

5. I love collecting milk glass and silver, and sometimes worry that my home is beginning to make me appear about 60 years older than I am!

6. I was an English major in college.

7. I have a 2 year old pug named Clementine.

8. I am terrible at finding my way around, because my husband drives everywhere (except for maybe the grocery store).

9. On the rare occasion that I am in the car alone, I love singing Rosemary Clooney songs really really loud.

10. My favorite movie is “The Secret Garden.” Sometimes when I’m stressed out, I just hum the music to myself! I could watch that movie every day for the rest of my life… maybe.

Um… I don’t know what 10 people to tag! I don’t think most of the people I read have any idea about my blog, or are probably too busy with their awesome businesses to respond to my post. So anyone who would like to post 10 things in the comments here (or on your own blog and link back to this one!) is totally free to! Let me know if you post something, if you don’t link back here!