An Albany Park couple invented a novel way of serving pigs in a blanket: Chicago-style. Credit: Provided

CHICAGO — Pigs in a blanket are a holiday staple in many households — but an Albany Park couple just found a way to make them even better.

Kyle Wolfe and her husband, Eric Marsh, served up their pigs in a blanket — which are tiny sausages in a baked dough “bun” — with a twist for Christmas: They were done with a Chicago dog-style sauce. It wasn’t the most appetizing-looking sauce, but it’s quickly become popular online as a photo of the spread has been liked more than 1,100 times on Twitter.

“It really still tasted so much like a Chicago hot dog, and that really surprised me,” Wolfe said. “That was one of the things that shocked us the most, is how much the integrity of the flavors held up even though they were blended together.”

Wolfe and her husband were discussing what to serve for the holidays when they decided to make pigs in a blanket.

“Immediately our minds went to, ‘We should probably make this Chicago-dog style,'” Wolfe said.

RELATED: A Short History Of Chicago-Style Hot Dogs (And Why We Love Them So Much)

They got the ingredients and Marsh processed and blended them: mustard, onion, relish, pickle, tomato, sport peppers and celery salt. They eyeballed the ratios and based them on how much of each ingredient they’d use on a normal-sized hot dog, Wolfe said.

And, of course, the two served their pigs in a blanket with poppyseed-covered dough to mimic the required bun for Chicago-style hot dogs.

The green sauce was a surprise hit, with people laughing and excited to try it, Wolfe said.

“Obviously all the ingredients go so well together, but sometimes when you repurpose them in such ways it doesn’t quite work,” Wolfe said. “Everyone was really surprised at how much it tasted like a Chicago dog.

“You’d think it would turn into mush but all the flavors were there.”

Wolfe tweeted a photo of the sauce and pigs in a blanket and has received dozens of supportive comments, with many people saying it was “brilliant,” “genius” and they’d try it themselves.

“It’s a Chicago-churri,” one person suggested.

“Genius,” another person replied. “And now this is the only thing I am ever bringing to parties for the rest of my life.”

The reaction delighted Wolfe, who thinks the attention on her and her husband’s invention is funny.

“I’m surprised there haven’t been more people saying, ‘That’s disgusting,'” Wolfe said.

Naturally, Wolfe and Marsh are fans of traditional Chicago-style hot dogs, making sure they have all the required toppings at their barbecues. It’s “very much a staple” of their diets, she said, laughing.

“The Chicago dog is definitely very important to us, I would say,” she said.

The recipe:

  • 2 pickle spears
  • 6 sport peppers
  • 1 small tomato
  • 1/3 cup white onion
  • 3 tablespoons sweet pickle relish
  • 2 tablespoons yellow mustard
  • celery salt to taste
  1. Blend in a food processor until the sauce is the desired consistency.

Note: The sauce was “roughly based on the ratio of what we’d put on an actual hot dog,” Wolfe said. “It can absolutely be adjusted to taste.”

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