Pig in a Trough

As the months drift by, I find myself pushed out of the kitchen more and more. Freya has been cooking like crazy and I can only make quick recipes and even those are generally made late at night. There was a time when I was the only one in the kitchen, but now I'm more often than not, relegated to the couch (boring now that Sky doesn't show King of the Hill) or alone in the basement ("Don't you have some wiring to do?"). I really miss the days when I could roll out some masa and boiled pork on a corn husk and steam tamales or meticulously prepare a very hearty chili (Mmmmm, chili!). And the funniest thing about it is that Freya used to love my cooking, especially my gumbo!

If and when I get to cook now, it's never a big affair. I get hassled even when I make something quick. Take the subject of this article for instance. I have mentioned Pig in a Trough at least twice in this blog, so she must have known that I'd need a slot of time in the kitchen! The bread was already made which meant the hard part was out of the way. And yet when I went into the kitchen and put a pan on the stove the response was, "What are you doing? I need that pan to make custard!"

Pig in a Trough is a very simple spinach and dill dip. It has gone under many names in our house, but when I first made it for Freya's family it was called Pig's Delight. Freya's grandma either genuinely can't remember a thing you say to her or she thinks it's funny to pretend she can't. Over time the name of this dip went through several permutations: Pig in the Ghetto, Pig in a Hellhole, Pig's Soup, "that dip in bread you make." For some reason Pig in a Trough stuck, possibly as it was an apt description of the grandma with her face in the breadbowl (Please don't read this Betty!)

The first thing you'll need is a decent round loaf of bread. If you're trying to keep it simple feel free to buy a nice loaf from the bakery or grocery store, but if you really want to impress you could make your own. The rice bread I made on Wednesday was used for todays Pig. The rest of the recipe is simply a matter of measuring and mixing a few ingredients. In spite of this, I have never had leftovers and everybody who's had it has requested the recipe.

Large round loaf of bread with the top cut off and insides scooped out and reserved.
Spinach-Either 300g/6oz. fresh spinach leaves or a small bag of frozen chopped spinach.
1 Tablespoon dill (we used dry out of necessity, but fresh would be better)
1-2 Teaspoons celery salt, depending on taste.
400g/8oz. Mayonnaise
400g/8oz. Sour cream

1. For fresh spinach: Chop the raw spinach leaves and drop into boiling water for a minute until wilted (or, if you aren't allowed to use a pan!!! place in a bowl and cover with boiling water from a kettle and leave for about five minutes while you stand in the corner.). Drain and squeeze out all excess water.
For frozen spinach: Thaw completely and squeeze out all excess water
2. Thoroughly mix spinach and all remaining ingredients in a bowl.
3. Transfer dip into bread bowl, cover with bread lid or tin foil and refrigerate for at least one hour, preferably overnight.
4. Serve with cut up bits of reserved bread, raw vegetables, or crackers.


Kathryn said...

Paul - this looks so good, and so easy too! I am going to try it, because it just looks amazing. Although the danger of it is clearly that making it for two people might mean we eat it all. Ahem.

I guess I could make a small loaf of bread and reduce quantities...

Kathryn x

FreyaE said...

What's wrong with eating the whole thing? It does keep for a couple of days, but you could make mini versions and give some away. Even so, I'd just make the big one and eat it in secret making it my guilty secret! Actually, my guilty secret is the reduced shelf at Somerfields. Freya asked me to write an article about it in fact.

Julia said...

hi Freyae,
this looks so good, I love spinach, bread and mayo so it's a winner for me! ;) yum!

Carolyn Johnson said...

Freya, this looks absolutely delicious. As I love spinach dip I will have to make a go for this recipe! A good time to make a boule just for this. :)

FreyaE said...

Hi Julia! It is a perfect dish, great for a picnic too!

Carolyn, you must give the bread a try, it's the best with homemade. Lovely for the Christmas table too!


Small Town Police Blotters said...

Pig in the Ghetto? That is by far the funniest thing I've heard all year. My sides still hurt from laughing. :)

That's what I'm calling this dish from now on.