(MEDIA GENERAL) – July 14 marks National Hot Dog Day! A day where Americans celebrate another slice of their culture and try to avoid thinking of what parts of which animal were used in making these delicious sausages.
Several regions and cities across the country have their own unique hot dog style. Which is your favorite?
A true Chicago dog is made with Vienna Beef franks, but you’re forgiven if you have to steer off-brand. It’s the toppings that define a Chicago Dog, anyway.
A Chicago Dog is: a steamed beef frank in a poppy seed bun, topped with tomato, white onion, sweet relish, pickled sport peppers, celery salt, yellow mustard and, of course, a dill pickle spear.
Good luck fitting that in one bite.
There are variations of the Coney all across the Midwest. The preference in Coney dogs between residents of Detroit and Flint, Michigan, is a heated talking point amongst many Michiganders.
One of the most popular is referred to as the Detroit Coney: a beef frank served on a steamed bun and topped with “Coney sauce” – beanless beef chili – mustard, chopped onions and shredded cheddar cheese.
While a fork and knife are frowned upon by some Coney enthusiasts, these dogs have a tendency to make a mess. Ignore any potential sneers and use a fork to clean up the lost Coney sauce and toppings.
New York Dog
Unlike a Chicago Dog or a Detroit Coney, a New York Dog seems like a reasonable snack to take on the go. It’s not quite the messy behemoth like some other hot dogs.
A classic New York Dog is an all-beef dog, usually griddled, and topped with sauerkraut and mustard. Feel free to ask which local restaurant has the best New York Dog, but do it knowing you’re going to get 100 different answers and 100 different arguments.
Danger Dog (Tijuana Dog)
The Danger Dog (believed to be originated in Tijuana, Mexico, and sometimes referred to as a Tijuana Dog) is now a popular staple in California’s big cities and is expanding east.
Unlike the Chicago Dog, the dog and how it is cooked makes the Danger Dog. The Danger Dog is a hot dog that is wrapped in bacon and deep fried. Toppings vary from restaurant to restaurant and city to city. One of the most popular ways to top a Danger Dog is grilled onions and peppers, ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise and, of course, bacon bits.
Let’s be honest, many of us out here aren’t hot dog savants. Whether they are cooked on the grill, over a campfire or on the stove, everyone has their own way to dress a hot dog, usually with the basic fare. But some people have an issue with that. I don’t want to assign labels like “hot dog snob,” but those people exist. For that reason, we are calling this style the All-American/Un-American Dog.
The All-American/Un-American Dog is dressed with whatever you’ve got in the fridge: Ketchup, mustard, onion, pickles and/or relish. Try some hot sauce or maybe sriracha. Potato chips? Sure! Go nuts! Dress it how you like.