HOLLAND, Mich. – While it’s easy to get excited about Tulip Time and all the festivities that go along with it, one of the hottest food items each year is something called pigs in a blanket.
Three weeks before Tulip Time gets underway, about 40 volunteers (mainly ladies) from First United Methodist Church and Grace Episcopal Church gather to make some 500 dozen (that’s about 6,000) of the pastry delicacies. Contrary to popular belief, they are NOT hot dogs rolled in pastry, nor are they beef rolled in cabbage. They are fresh ground beef and pork, seasoned lightly with salt, pepper, nutmeg, and spices, then rolled in a light, airy homemade pastry dough.
48 dozen eggs are used, 22 gallons of milk, 350 pounds of flour, five pounds of baking powder, and 128 pounds of margarine. Everything is completely homemade from scratch and is done in just one day. Perhaps what many people don’t realize is that all proceeds benefit mission projects.
If your mouth is already watering, pigs in a blanket can be purchased at the Marketplaats in the Holland Civic Center during Tulip Time week (that’s May 6 – 11). Other pigs (as they’re called locally) are sold to church members who preordered, and still others are sold by the dozen at Tulip Time. Pigs in a blanket are original, 100 percent authentic Dutch!
Once the eggs and milk are combined, flour is added along with margarine to formulate the dough or pastry part. The dough is mixed by hand and is then rolled out on a large table. It’s cut in to squares like a big tic tac toe board, then a scoop of combined beef and pork balls are added to the center. Afterwards, volunteers roll them up like a cinnamon roll. They are then packages are ready to be purchased and baked at home. Many of the ones sold at Tulip Time are already baked, hot and ready for immediate consumption.
Click here for information on the Holland Tulip Time Festival.