Laziness Brings Many Hot Dogs at Once
Wow, who could imagine that it would take me almost a year to post about a hot dog experience? Last May I celebrated my graduation from library school as well as my 30th birthday, and did so in typical fashion: I threw a big-ass party with tons of encased meats, beer, and bourbon chasers. I bought a bunch of encased meats from my favorite purveyor of fine meats, Karl’s Sausage Kitchen: clockwise from my thumb you’ll see the bratwurst, chorizo, and frankfurters (also had regular coarse bratwurst but had run through it by this time). I added to this a package of Pearl all-beef dogs and Kayem natural casing dogs (top left and right bunches).
To add to the hot dog multiplicity, we had Flo’s famous relish so you could make yourself a loaded Flo’s dog (albiet with a grilled dog, not steamed) and had a packet of Mikos Greek hot dog sauce that was sent to me gratis from the company, so we also made a ton of Texas Weiners. Aside from Karl’s bratwurst, which are always the star of the party, the Texas Weiners were a big hit. Just one look at Hank’s face below and you can tell he’s in love with the hot dog.
A quick note on the greek sauce: Sam was very skeptical about how it would taste, especially when she saw the three ingredients were the powder contained in the packet, water, and a little ground beef. It made a pretty soupy mixture but I let it boil down a little longer than directed and it was at a consistency more to my liking. The sauce was spicy yet subtle enough that it allowed the flavors of mustard and raw onions to blend nicely, and was as close as I could get to the regional Pennsylvania favorite while living over 300 miles away. My friend Andrea made a video of me putting together a Texas Weiner, so hopefully she’ll send it along and I can post it here. Much thanks to Mikos for the free sample, I’ll be buying more come summer!
UPDATE (3/4/10): I received an email from the kind folks at Mikos who explained about the soupy greek sauce: “more than one customer e-mailed us about it. After looking into the problem, we found one batch of our seasoning was mis-caulated and our packages were under-filled. I guess you were one of the unlucky ones to get one of the packages. Not everyone knows how to thin or thicken a sauce, I’m glad you did.”
YET ANOTHER UPDATE! (3/5): I found a few more pictures on my iphone from the party and was reminded that we also made another of my favorite hot dogs, the schnurble. I had misidentified one of the Karl’s meats (from the first picture in the post) and called it smoked polish sausage but it was that most lovely of Iberian meats, chorizo! The proof is in the picture above, eat your heart out kiddos!
Here’s my lovely wife Sam, who took a quick primer from me so I could get away from the grill and mingle with my friends at the party. Many thanks go to her for putting the party together and later helping my mom & sister hide the bourbon while my brother-in-law chased them around the house trying to get it back. What memories!
And speaking of Sam, here’s a stand outside Charleston, WV that my dad has driven past multiple times but never stopped at (shame on him!). Looks like the guys at the WV Hot Dog have already reviewed it! Jesus, these guys are as fearless as they are tireless in their search for the perfect slaw dog.
I think we’re all pretty secure in the knowledge that this winter’s been a real shit storm. Vancouver didn’t get a bit of snow so they had to truck it in for the winter Olympics, those who know how to deal with serious snow haven’t had much (New England states) and then those who panic at the sight of a snowflake (we’re looking at you, New Jersey!) got walloped. To compound this Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs-like apocalypse is this late-breaking Onion news (thanks to Hank for the link). Snowmageddon is nothing compared to a sausage storm!
If it’s beautifully drawn hot dogs you’re after, look no further than Hawk Krall’s 2009: The Year in Hot Dogs, highlighting some of the most interesting dogs I’ve seen. Tim, who you last saw chowing down on a Fenway Frank with a Guinness in hand, has moved down to the Philly area for the better part of a year, so hopefully he’ll be our man on the inside and get us a review of the Philly Combo. Really, what’s not to love when you combine a hot dog with a fish cake? Sounds amazing!
And last, but certainly not least, my mother-in-law forwarded this link to me. Typically I drink beer with my hot dogs, but if you want to kick it up a notch, try adding the power of bourbon to your encase meats!