Although you might eat hot dogs with great delight on a sunny day, they don’t feel so exciting when they’re all you have in the fridge, or all a picky child will eat. But don’t get stuck thinking hot dogs are boring. Whether pork, beef, kosher, or veggie, hot dogs are livelier with a generous vegetable topping. Here are some ideas to get you going.
Quick Teriyaki Carrots
This quick teriyaki sauce is great on all kinds of vegetables. Try it with carrots and then experiment from there.
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1 clove garlic, grated
2 to 3 carrots, grated
1. Add the soy sauce, brown sugar, and garlic to a hot pan over medium heat. Let it sizzle.
2. Once the sugar is dissolved, toss the carrots in and cook until they absorb the sauce, about 2 minutes.
Salt and Vinegar Cucumbers with Dill
These tangy cucumbers are like a quick form of pickles. Add a tablespoon of dill or mustard seeds for a more pickley flavor. Store leftovers in a sealed container in the fridge and they’ll keep about a week.
1 field cucumber
2 tablespoons vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
1. Thinly slice the cucumber.
2. Scoop the cucumber into a bowl with the vinegar and salt and toss. Marinate for 20 minutes.
Mexican Street Corn
4 ears corn
4 tablespoons mayonnaise
½ cup grated cotija, queso blanco, feta, Romano, or Parmesan cheese
dusting of chile powder
1 lime, sliced into wedges
1. Turn your oven’s broiler to high.
2. Peel off the corn husks and clean off all the silk. Leave the green ends attached for a convenient handhold.
3. Place the corn on a baking sheet and stick them under the broiler for 2 to 3 minutes. Rotate and repeat until they’re brown and toasty all the way around—no more than 10 minutes total.
4. Simply cut the corn off the cob and mix the mayo, chili powder, cheese, and lime into the kernels.
Wilted Cabbage Salad
1 medium-size cabbage,
1 tablespoon salt
½ cup raw peanuts
½ bunch scallions, finely chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
or lemon juice
salt and pepper, to taste
finely chopped apple
a few drops of sesame oil
1. Toss the cabbage and salt in a large bowl. Place something heavy, like a pot (any size that fits in the bowl), on top of the cabbage. The weight, along with the salt, will encourage the cabbage to expel its moisture. Leave it for 2 hours. This method will take away some bitterness, leaving the crunchy texture of raw cabbage.
2. Roast the peanuts in a single layer in a skillet over medium heat, occasionally tossing them and moving them, until they are lightly brown all over, about 5 minutes. Alternatively, spread the peanuts on a baking sheet and broil them about 2 minutes. Keep an eye on them so they don’t burn. You want them nice and golden. Sprinkle a bit of salt on the roasted peanuts and set them aside.
3. Combine the olive oil, rice vinegar, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Mix it up and taste. Adjust the salt and pepper as you like. Remember that the cabbage is already salted, so you won’t need too much salt in the dressing.
4. Once the 2 hours have passed, toss the cabbage again with your hands. Cabbage treated in this way will last for several days. Before serving, add the scallions, peanuts, and dressing. Toss, taste, and adjust the seasoning as you see fit.
5. Chop the cabbage finely so that it can be distributed evenly over your hot dog.
½ medium onion, finely chopped
2 cups chopped tomatoes
1 jalapeño pepper, finely chopped
(remove seeds for less heat)
juice of 1 lime
¼ cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
salt and pepper, to taste
chopped mango, peach, plum,
finely chopped garlic
chipotle chiles in adobo instead of the jalapeño
1. If you like raw onion, skip ahead to Step 2. Otherwise, take the edge off by sautéing the onion with a bit of water in a pan over medium heat. The onion is ready once the water has boiled off.
2. Mix the onion, tomato, pepper, lime juice, cilantro, salt, and pepper in a bowl. Be sure to add enough salt and pepper!
3. Taste the salsa. You’re looking for a balance of spicy from the jalapeño pepper, sweet from the tomatoes, and bright and fresh from the herbs and lime juice. If something’s out of balance, add more of the appropriate ingredient to bring it back into balance.
4. Try to drain a little bit of the juice so it doesn’t make your bun too soggy. Crumble tortilla chips on top for some crunch.
Sweet or Savory Pineapple Salad
This is a classic combo, especially with pork! Chop the pineapple finely so it won’t fall off.
1 can pineapple, in juice
1 tablespoon sugar
zest of ½ lime
salt, a wee pinch
1 can pineapple, in juice
1 tablespoon finely chopped
2 tablespoons chopped fresh
salt, to taste
1. Open the can of pineapple. Drain the juice into a glass and drink it!
2. If the pineapple is cut into chunks, simply scoop them into a bowl. If you have rings, chop them into bite-size pieces first.
3. Add the remaining ingredients for the sweet or savory salad. Stir and taste. For the sweet, don’t forget the salt—it brings out the sweetness in the acidic pineapple. Adjust to taste, and serve.
This recipe is from Good and Cheap by Leanne Brown
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