Frankfurters – Vienna hot Dogs

Frankfurters

The Best Hot Dogs are Frankfurters

I recently shared a little discussion, about Frankfurters, in my “Brag & Bitch about Cooking food group.”  One of my favorite members asked if anyone knew what kind of sausage or hot dog was in a Chicago Dog.  As it turns out, they are Vienna’s or what are more commonly known as Frankfurters.  So I thought it would be fun to put together a tutorial about making Frankfurter Vienna Sausage Hot Dogs at home or, at least, the way I like to make them anyway.

Frankfurters

Preparing Frankfurters

First you’ve got to decide how you want your Frankfurters cooked.  Do want them grilled or baked in the oven?  How about steamed or boiled in water?  Or, my personal favorite, skewed and roasted over an open pit fire.  Any and all of these are regularly excepted.  And, as much as I hate to admit it, some folks like to nuke them in the Microwave(eh-hem, my wife).  Now, what kind of bun are you going to use?  In this video tutorial, I show you a real cool way, to make a hot dog bun, that I recently adopted my self.  It’s the Dog Haus method and I like it because they’ve combined the idea of a grilled sandwich by buttering up and grilling soft and tender Dinner Rolls for buns.  Have I got you curious yet?  Now all you have to do is figure out what you want to top your dog with.

Frankfurters

Toppings for Frankfurters

There isn’t, exactly, a rule book on Toppings for Frankfurters or any Vienna Hot dog, for that matter.  There are, however, some Classics that you just don’t mess with, like a traditional Chili and Cheese Dog or, as I mentioned before, a Chicago Dog.  But one thing is certain, once the dog is made, toppings are free rein.  Onions, Peppers, tomatoes, avocado, Pickles and whatever Condiments you like to add, in addition to the recipe, are all examples of the possibilities.  And believe me, they are endless.  But one thing is clear, everyone and I do mean every one likes them different.  How do you like your Frankfurters?

 

How to Make Italian Sausage

Ground Italian Sausage main pic

You’re going to love learning How to Make Italian Sausage.  This is, of course, a sweet and spicy recipe that can be easily adjusted to your specific tastes and, most importantly, reveals the secret to actually making it taste like sausage instead of just seasoned ground pork.

The secret lies in 3 places.  First, the sausage has got to have a 2 to 1 ratio; 2 parts meat and 1 part Fat and in this particular case it’s 2 parts Pork Picnic Shoulder Muscle(which is very tender) and 1 part Bacon or Fat Back.  If you’re wondering what Fat Back is, it’s just exactly what it sounds like; the Fat in the back of the pig; which is where bacon is derived from anyway so why not just use bacon.  Plus, for me personally, I can’t get Fat Back where I live without ordering a minimum of 60 lbs and I’ll never make that much sausage.

The Second secret is the ingredients.  This means any kind of sausage you want to make, whether it be Breakfast, Italian, or Chorizo etc., will all depend on the ingredients, or seasonings, going into the 2 to 1 ratio.

The Third thing is all about the binder.  The binder is what fuses the meat and ingredients together and keeps them from falling apart.  I’ve also found that it’s a big part of the the seasoning which also effects the performance in the sausage when it cooks.

Italian Sausage Patties Main pic

For example:  Most Italian Sausage recipes add a red wine and vinegar combination as a binder, which is fine, but this creates a bitter taste so you have to compensate with a sweetener, like sugar.  But I have found that Corn Syrup works even better and I add Vegetable Shortening.  Why the Shortening?  Cooking the sausage without it leaves the meat very dry.  It leaves an added quality to the sausage that improves the flavor and adds a moist tenderness to the meat when it’s done.

If you’re interested in more of my recipes with sausage in them, check out my Egg Noodle Lasagna and my Spaghetti with Meatballs.

Italian Sausage Ingredients:

2 lbs Pork shoulder Cusion Meat
1 lbs Bacon
6 Garlic Cloves, finely chopped
1/4 cup Fresh Parsly, chopped
1 tbsp Fennel Seed
1 tbsp Italian Seasoning
1 tbsp Paprika
1 tbsp Red Chili Flakes
Salt and Pepper to taste, approximately 1/2 tbsp of each

Binders

1/3 cup Corn Syrup
1/4 cup Vegetable Shortening

Beer Bratwurst with Sauerkraut and Cheese Sauce

Bratwurst Main Pic

I love these Beer Bratwursts or Beer Brats!  Seriously, this is something that is welcome at my barbecue any day of the week!  They’re fun and delicious, so I never get any complaints.  The Bratwursts themselves are first boiled in beer before they are taken to the grill, and then I make the cheese sauce out of the leftover Beer from the boil.  The Sauerkraut is the Bavarian Style of making Kraut and it tops these Brats off perfectly.  So you’re looking at a Beer Brat that has been boiled in beer, grilled, then topped off with a Beer Cheese sauce and Sauerkraut.  Doesn’t that look Delicious!

And just so you know, I make the world’s best Onion Rings and Sweet Potato fries and I’ve got the links and recipes below!

CLICK HERE for Onion Rings
CLICK HERE for Sweet Potato Fries

Ingredients:

1 pckg Bratwurst
1 bag of Hotdog Buns
2 Beers
3 cups Sauerkraut
2 tbsp Shortening
1 Onion
1 Bay Leaf
1 tsp caraway seed
1 tsp Sugar
1 pckg Cream Cheese
2 cups Cheddar Cheese, mild
Salt and Pepper to taste