Virginia Hall and Undercover Hotdogs
Updated: Sep 29, 2021
Ages 9+ Total Time: 30 minutes WWII
Virginia Hall's plans for her life were too ambitious to begin with. For a woman born in 1906, her aspirations to higher education and public service
were somewhat radical. At the age of 26 she managed to land a low-ranking administrative job. However, a year later, a tragic hunting accident took away her leg. It was now clear that she would need to shelve her childhood dreams.
Clear to everyone else, that is.
Hall took a year to heal, learning to walk using a wooden leg. Once she was walking again, she devised out her next steps to achieve her old dream.
Just seven years, Hall was an undercover agent in occupied France, considered "most dangerous spy" by the German itelligence agency, the Gestapo. In one of her more daring escapes, she crossed the Pyrenees Mountains by foot, covering fifty miles of steep snowy terrain in only 3 days, all while dragging one wooden leg behind her.
On most of her missions, however, no escapes were needed. Hall disguised herself as an old folksy woman, using acting skills, a knack for languages, and sharp wits, to remain undercover.
In her honor, we disguise American hotdogs as a French pastry.
1 sheet puff pastry dough
Optional: cheese, relish, onion
1. Heat oven to 350F
2. Cut each hotdog into 2. Cut each half lengthwise into 2
quarters. Now cut each quarter lengthwise. Each hotdog
will yield 8 “sticks”.
3. Using a pizza slicer, cut the puff pastry dough sheet into 4.
4. Make a diagonal cut in each of the 4 rectangles to create
5. Place a stick of hotdog parallel to the triangle base.
6. Add condiments, or other toppings.
7. Roll the triangle dough from the base to the top
8. Bake for 10-15 minutes, until dough is golden.
While you wait
Taste the experience of limited leg movement by wrapping cardboard around your knee. You can use a side of a cardboard box and stick some tape around it to hold it firm.
Now that you cannot bend your knee, only drag your leg along, try crossing a mountain of tables and chairs, climbing over a sofa, or going up a tree. Extra ketchup for whoever makes it!