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March 5, 2008

The United States of Hot Dogs

I am compiling a list of regional varieties of America’s great tubular foodstuff, the hot dog. (No, I’m not crazy. I’m a food writer.)

If you’re into hot dogs/street food, please give this a look and make comments, additions, critiques, recommendations, etc.

Nota bene: the following is, for the most part, taken from Wikipedia so it is inherently questionable. I welcome a critical eye!

Bacon-wrapped hot dog (does this have a NAME??), Los Angeles: illegally grilled on the street and topped with grilled poblano chile

Sauerkraut and melted Swiss cheese on a hot dog (NAME??), Kansas City

Roasted Chilies dog, New Mexico: DOES THIS EXIST?  ANYONE EATEN ONE? Or know anything about it?

The Seoul Dog, Ann Arbor: hot dog wrapped in bacon, deep fried, and served with kimchi

Half-smoke, Washington DC: a spicier sausage/hot dog most famously from Ben’s Chili Bowl

Monumental dog, Washington DC: steamed or grilled rectangular all beef hotdog on a steamed potato hotdog bun, with a spread of mayonnaise on the bun, topped with banana peppers, onions, tangy diced red peppers, and sliced pickles.

“Perro Caliente”, Arizona: served on a warm, flour tortilla with salsa, refried beans & rice

Chicago-style hot dog: a steamed Red Hot Chicago, Vienna Beef or Dave Berg hot dog topped with tomatoes, cucumbers, both a dill pickle spear and sweet pickle relish. yellow mustard, celery salt, and served on a steamed poppy seed bun. Pickled hot peppers (“sport peppers”) and chopped or grilled onions are sometimes optional, but usually included by default.

Maxwell Street Polish sausage,” Chicago: usually served on a plain bun with fried or grilled onions and mustard

Potato dog, New Jersey: diced and stewed potatoes are combined with brown mustard and served on spicy brand hot dog

Italian-style (a.k.a. Newark-style), New Jersey: deep-fried dog (or two if it’s a double) is stuffed into "pizza bread", topped with fried (or sauteed) onions and peppers, and crisp-fried potato chunks

Dirty water dog, NYC: all beef and on every street corner

Red Hots & White Hots, New York: Red Hots are “normal” hot dogs, White Hots are plumper, similar to German bockwurst

Seattle-style hot dogs: cream cheese and onions, usually on a grilled/toasted bun, often with kraut.

Sonoran hot dog, Tucson and Phoenix: grilled and wrapped in Mesquite-smoked bacon, topped with freshly-chopped tomatoes, onions, shredded yellow or cotijo cheese, tomatillo salsa or red chile sauce, pinto beans, mayonnaise, ketchup and/or mustard, and served on a bread. Often served with a fresh-roasted chile.

LA dog, Lower Alabama: bright pinkish-red hot dog topped with ketchup, mustard, chili, sauerkraut, and pickles. During the Mardi Gras season, street vendors are known to sell similar hot dogs, but with a deep fried bun.


CHILI DOGS:

Scrambled dawg, Columbus, Georgia: cheap, usually red-skinned hot dog, served on a toasted white bun and topped with mustard and spicy chili. This particular chili contains beans and has large chunks of diced raw onion

Coney Island, Michigan: pork hot dog with natural casing served on a steamed bun, topped with all-meat, beanless chili, diced yellow onion, and yellow mustard.

Carolina hot dogs, North & South Carolina, aka “slaw dogs”: served with chili and cole slaw, mustard, and onions

New York System Hot Wieners, Rhode Island: wiener is cut from a long sausage, several feet long and thus the NY System wiener has no rounded ends. The wiener “chef” dresses the wieners by lining them up his bare arm to add dollops of meat sauce, chopped onion, mustard and the essential celery salt.

West Virginia chili dogs: beanless chili and sweet cole slaw, mustard, and chopped onions

Cheesy Coney, Cincinnati: topped with Cincinnati chili, mustard, diced onion, and shredded mild cheddar cheese.

Texas weiners, Paterson, NJ: grilled or deep fried hot dogs served with spicy brown mustard, chopped onions and a meat sauce similar to chili.

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