Summer in the U.S. means serving up tons of hotdogs fresh of the grill. However, at some point this summer you, your family, and your guests are likely to become bored with the continuous stream of identical dogs being served up. There has never been a better time to start thinking outside the bun and take your hotdogs to the next level. Given the wide range of hotdogs and toppings available, serving up great new ideas each time you fire up the grill has never been easier.
Variety is the Spice of Life
While there is absolutely nothing wrong with good old fashioned beef franks, there are so many different varieties, you should never be bored. With a little looking around you can find hotdogs made from pork, chicken, turkey, seafood, turkey, and duck, along with several different types of veggie dogs. This huge variety offers you the chance to be experimental, for example serve turkey dogs with stuffing and cranberries, or create your own version of duck dogs a la orange.
Offer Your Guests a Gourmet Toppings Bar
While most of us serve up a few basic toppings and condiments, this is only the tip of the iceberg. Instead of a bowl of chopped onions, one or two relishes along with ketchup and mustard, be prepared to offer your guests a virtual smorgasbord of toppings. This is one case in which the old adage “The more the merrier” should come into play. Your toppings bar should include a range of shredded cheeses, a selection of marinated veggies, hummus, a few fruits such as pineapple, apple bits, and pears, chili, bacon bits, and of course sauerkraut.
It’s All in the Bun
This is a good time to take a good look at the bun you plan to serve with your new “gourmet” hotdogs and toppings. For decades we have been serving our dogs on white bread buns without complaint. Today you have a much wider range of breads to choose from including French bread rolls, sesame seed buns, rosemary garlic buns, and more. You could even serve soft taco shells to let your guests create their own special type of wraps.
A fresh hotdog just cries out for the right type of sauce. You should be serving hot melted cheese, barbecue, guacamole, pesto, salsa, and teriyaki. These sauces can help to turn what was once a boring old fashioned hotdog into a gastronomical delight, you, your family, and your guests are sure to enjoy throughout the coming months.