Stretching for miles in a sprawling Los Angeles canyon is Griffith Park. We love Griffith because there’s an observatory, museums, hiking, biking, swimming, horseback riding, a working historic train, and a multitude of snack shops that keep us well nourished and hydrated during our strenuous weekend activity.
The crown jewel of snack shops is “The Trails,” a shack built to blend into the landscape. It’s the California hippie version of Manhattan’s Shake Shack. If you’re in Griffith and can’t find “The Trails,” just look for the long line of people waiting for a slice of pie, a lavender cookie, a sprout sandwich, or if you’re Ben and Nick, a Snake Dog.
Snake Dogs are like pigs in a blanket, only much cooler – a frankfurter wrapped in a coil of puff pastry, then baked so it looks like a snake slithering across the picnic table. We’ve started making Snake Dogs at home. Here’s a recipe so you can pack Snake Dogs in the picnic basket for your next trip to the Griffith Park where you live.
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1 package frozen puff pastry
1 package of 8 frankfurters, a local butcher’s brand is best
Long wooden skewers
1 egg, whisked
Thaw and place an unfolded sheet of puff pastry on a cutting board and cut in 1-inch wide strips as evenly as you can. Insert a wooden skewer into the end of each frank, lengthwise from end to end, with the sharp point sticking out of the end of the frank.
Poke the end of a puff pastry strip onto the sharp skewer and carefully coil the strip around the frank, making sure it overlaps with each coil. Depending on the length of the franks and puff pastry strips, you might need two strips of pastry. If this is the case, start the second strip so the end is on the bottom-side of the frank.
When the frank is covered with the coil, brush it with egg and bake in a 350°F preheated oven until the puff pastry is golden brown, about 15 minutes.
If you’re looking for an adult version, you can brush the frank lightly with any kind of mustard, horseradish or even BBQ sauce before wrapping. You can also sprinkle the outside, after you brush with egg wash, with sesame or poppy seeds, or make your own “everything” blend.
Note of caution: With its sharp skewer inserted in the center, Snake Dogs are not appropriate for young children.
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