On the recommendation of my friend Food Blog John, proprietor of the excellent Food & Wine Hedonist, I made a Chicago Dog for this week’s frank.
Having never been to Chicago, I had not sampled a Chicago Dog, so I was looking forward to a new frankfurter experience.
And since I’ve typed Chicago 3 times I have to go here:
But I digress.
The Chicago Dog boils down to this: hot dog, poppy seed bun, sweet relish, pickle, onion, mustard, celery salt, sport pepper.
Cool. I can do all that. But what the hell is a sport pepper? All I knew is that there was no way in hell the Safeway was going to carry them.
I did some research and didn’t quite get answer on what was a suitable substitute, so I had to ask the be-all-end-all. I consulted The Martha.
I might not know what a sport pepper is, but I do know what it is not. And it is not a pepperoncini. According to Food Blog John, the sport is less spicy and not as vinegary. But the pepperoncini is what I had. Plus! Martha said it was OK. And who am I to question Miss Omnimedia? So I split the difference: I nipped the tip of the peppers, and rinsed them to drain the vinegar.
I also fudged a poppy seed bun by brushing a hot dog roll with margarine, sprinkling it with poppy seeds, and baking it for a few minutes. I didn’t have sweet relish in the house so I chopped up some bread & butter pickles.
Here is the completed Chicago Dog with a little iceberg wedge salad:
The dog was good. Solid. I am sure that this is one of those things that if I had it in Chicago, in the right place, with the proper ingredients this frank would absolutely sing. And what I did with the peppers worked–they weren’t overwhelmingly spicy nor vinegary.
There is definitely a lot of stuff on this one. Which really makes it a meal. One was enough for me. And with the tomato and onion there’s some nutritional value, right?
Oh, and I officially love celery salt. It’s so—-salty! It tastes like Old Bay. Which, looking at the tin of Old Bay, celery salt is one of the main ingredients. That and paprika. So now that I have a jar in my spice rack I will be putting celery salt on everything.
So a big thank you to John for the recommendation. Do any of you guys have a recommendation or a challenge for me? You know how to find me.
And in closing, I also just stole this video from Food Blog John’s blog. I hadn’t seen it in a long time and it raises the age-old question that all cat owners must ask at one time or another (or in my case at least once a day):
What are they feeding you?