Sunday, November 15, 2009

$1.00 Hot Dogs are
Safe and Delicious,

if you get them from Eliana


So it looks like Eliana, the $1 hot dog lady on the NW corner of 43rd and 6th, has survived the onslaught. You might remember that she was part of the crew of carts that got kicked out of that spot by the cops awhile back for parking on a sidewalk that was supposedly too narrow to be a legal vending spot for carts. She even had her cart confiscated, despite the fact that later measurements clearly showed that the sidewalk was the proper width. The other two carts (which included the 3rd El Rey del Sabor cart) decided to cut their losses and set up on the NE corner of 43rd and 6th. Eliana tried that for a bit but, after working the opposite corner for many years without issue, she was eager to return. Thankfully the Street Vendor Project (which hosts the Vendy Awards every year) stepped in and not only helped her get her cart back but also helped deflect any other obstacles to her returning to her original corner.

It looks like she’s there for good again (on the NW corner of 43rd and 6th), and last week I decided to swing by and actually try one of these $1 hot dogs.


I don’t think I’ve ever met a hot dog I didn’t like. Sure, grilled is preferred to boiled, and I’m a big fan of the hot dog/sausage topped with crazy ingredients. But it’s hard to screw up a regular old hot dog in my book. It’s just a mysteriously delicious food (emphasis on the mysterious), and Eliana’s $1 hot dog cart is no exception. You have your choice between “sausage” or “hot dog”, and I went with sausage- because it just looked like a plumper, redder hot dog. I’m a big fan of the grilled onions, so I went with those plus ketchup (but she has sauerkraut and mustard if your prefer either of those.) Bun was typical, and the thing just tasted like a boiled hot dog. The grilled onions were way to watery (too much tomato sauce, and not enough onions) but the thing cost $1 so no real complaints. Truthfully, what do you expect for $1? It’s obviously not going to be a high quality dog, or a high quality bun for that price. The only important thing is survival, and I can say I came out of the hot dog experience unscathed. These $1 hot dogs are completely safe to eat, and easily the cheapest lunch in Midtown. (Or snack, if you so choose to think of them that way.)

I’m sure there are better hot dogs to be had in Midtown (and feel free to suggest some in the comments) but none as cheap as a $1, and I doubt they’re served as somebody as friendly as Eliana.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Felony Franks

Employs Ex-Cons

Taco trucks are so passé. Want to really pull customers into your food gimmick? Talk to Jim Andrews, owner of Felony Franks, a Chicago hot dog stand where the mascot is a wiener in prison stripes.

But reports that Andrews’ joint isn’t an empty pun. Felony Franks – which serves up specialties like the Misdemeanor Weiner, the Chain Gang Chili Dog and calls its side orders "accomplices" – employs 10 full time ex-convicts. Andrews runs the charity The Rescue Foundation, which works to give ex-cons a second chance and is doing just that with his restaurant.

But some think the restaurant is just exploiting the rough reputation of the city’s west side neighborhood where Felony Franks is located and is exacerbating the problem.

We think Felony Franks is actually doing the opposite by giving these ex-cons a second chance and taking the stigma of jail time away from those who want to start having a productive life.

And the product itself? Andrews says sales are doing gangbusters, and the slogan may tell us why: It’s not just for a good cause, it’s "food so good, it’s criminal."

Photo courtest Joe M500, via Flickr.

Good Eating

Hot Dog Kids

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Pronto Pups, Grand Haven, Michigan
CLOSED for the season
Here we are during our annual January Fund raiser special weekend only opening ! We are open the third weekend in January (Friday,Saturday & Sunday)for a little taste of summer and to give the mid season fix to hold until we open for the season the first weekend in May !

Pronto Pups are a tastey treat (sometimes dinner) that have been enjoyed by people the world over for now 61 years.

We start with a top of the line frankfurter,dip it in a "Special batter", cook them in 100% vegtable oil and serve them "Naked" or with Ketchup or Mustard.

PROUD TO SAY that everything we use to make our product is made in the U.S.A.

Our Franks are made in Michigan !

Generations have made Pronto Pups a family tradition. Families from all over the U.S. travel to our wonderful little city on the banks of the Grand River to enjoy Pronto Pups!

The Business

Basically, a small family owned and operated buisness that believes in promoting a great product at a fair and reasonable price. Thats it. No frills. Just great food and soft drinks. We serve Coke products along with Ice Mountain bottled water.

Who We Are

Charles Nelson (Chuck) is the founding father of this cute little stand. Built it 1947 when there was nothing on the harbor but weeds. He ran it for years on his own. Now, Carl (his son) and Carls wife Nancy along with their kids own and operate the Pronto Pup stand seasonally. Continuing Dads old buisness philosophy of quality over quantity.

Pronto Pup

313 South Harbor
Grand Haven, MI 49417

Phone: 1-616-638-1632

Friday, October 9, 2009

Ben Ali

Founder of Ben’s Chili Bowl

Dies at 82

Dear family and friends:

We would like to thank you for your incredible outpouring of love and support. Your expressions have truly touched us. We appreciate you now as we have over the past 51 years.

With love and thanks,

The Ali Family

Ben Ali, founder of the world famous Ben’s Chili Bowl, passed away on Wednesday, October 7th at 10:15pm. He was at home with his wife, Virginia, and died peacefully of natural causes. He was 82.

Family, friends, and countless fans of Ben’s will sorely miss the energetic and unforgettable personality of Ben Ali. He was a true hero of the people and a great example of someone who actually epitomized the American dream. He and his loving wife Virginia created a landmark institution in D.C., tantalizing generations of residents and visitors with their spicy chili dogs and half smokes, but more importantly touching people of all walks of life with their exemplary dedication to the D.C. community.

Although Ben has moved on, his legacy continues with his family at the Chili Bowl helm. After surviving the 1968 riots and other challenges over the past 51 years, Ben has made sure that the Bowl will continue to serve its loyal customers for many years to come. Ben and the entire Ali family have given us something that is rare these days: a continued sense of family and community that only seems to get bigger and better. Ben Ali, we will miss you!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


In South Africa, Boerewors (our equivalent of a sausage) is as traditional as you can get and it is hard to imagine a sports event, farmer's market or school fete without a Boerewors stall. It is pronounced "Boo-ruh-vors" and loosely translated it means "boere" - farmers and "wors" - sausage and this is indicative of where the boerewors originated from. Boerewors is basically coarsely minced beef(sometimes pork and lamb is added) with some spices such as coriander, pepper, nutmeg, cloves and all spice. This mixture is then stuffed into a casing. Boerewors is traditionally cooked on an open fire, but you can also cook it on a gas grill, oven or in a pan. The smell of boerewors on an open fire, however is very hard to match! A Boerewors Roll is simply a piece or sausage in a long bun, enjoyed with caramelized onions and of course Mrs Balls Chutney!!!
I am a tough customer when it comes to buying boerewors! I like a loose sausage, crumbly in texture and I also like a prominent coriander taste. I found a supplier who makes, in my opinion, THE BEST BOEREWORS IN SOUTH AFRICA .

I am sure if you are visiting South Africa in future, maybe even next year for the 2010 Fifa World Cup you will find this true South African treat sold by many a street vendor!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Backyard Big Dog takes hot dogs uptown, and it works

By William R. Wood | Kalamazoo Gazette

October 01, 2009, 11:49PM

0213959_4.jpgBackyard Big Dog - Chicago dog
Marcus McCone gets his order handed to him by Elise Conner at the Backyard Big Dog on Stadium Drive.OSHTEMO TOWNSHIP — Owners and managers of Backyard Big Dog Gourmet Hot Dogs have a tough challenge: To persuade customers to try hot dogs that are different than the ones the customers are used to.

There are lots of hot dogs at Backyard Big Dog to select, from dogs with Swiss cheese, sour cream and pickles to dogs with coleslaw along with mustard and ketchup. But what is going to move a guy to try that rather than his favorite Chicago dog?

But one thing Backyard Big Dog has going for it is good meat. My companion and I, who got two gourmet dogs ($2.19 to $4.79) and one gourmet, homemade brat easily agreed on that. The gourmet dogs were especially tasty and juicy, so much so that we plan to get those for the kids when we return, rather than the less expensive and small “Puppies” or kids’ hot dogs which cost $2.99 with mustard and ketchup, Black & Barrel potato chips and a drink.

The hot dog meat was tasty, juicy and thick — a quarter pound of beef — and we could easily taste it through the fixings piled on our hot dogs.
The Chicago Style Hot Dog at the Backyard Big Dog on Stadium Drive. We decided to be adventurous. I got the special of the day, which happened to include bacon, sauerkraut, sauteed onions and mushrooms and Swiss cheese. The flavors melded together nicely for a nice little meal.

My companion got the Snoop Dog topped with a chili made at the restaurant, along with onion and mustard. She tasted the chili by itself first and liked it.

The buns used for the hot dogs are substantial and made at Renzema’s Bakery of Parchment. The brats are homemade as well, created at Harding’s in Plainwell. They are made with pineapple (Maui Brat, $4.99), habanero peppers and Cajun spices (Atomic Brat, $4.99) and jalapeno peppers (Backyard Big Brat, $4.99). The one I got, the Alternative Brat, which was a plain brat made into a Chicago dog, had a full, robust flavor but was not as good as the restaurant’s regular, quarter-pound dogs.

The most popular hot dog at the restaurant is the Chicago Dog with the regular, quarter-pound dog. It is topped with mustard, relish, chopped onions, tomato wedges, sport peppers, celery salt and a pickle spear.

Address: 7000 Stadium Drive, Suite No. 4, at Eighth St., Oshtemo Township.
Hours: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays, and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sundays.
Phone: 269-353-3253

The Ongoing Conquest of the City by Hot Dogs: Gulluoglu


In case you haven't noticed, frankfurters are rolling over the city like newly forested logs. They are a snack, a meal, and the new filet mignon. Everywhere you go, you'll see hot dogs, many duded up like a boy on his first date, currying favor on all sides, with a brioche bun for a limousine. Can you guess where I found the above example?


The frank is from Gulluoglu (the name sounds like someone gargling with soda pop), the 139-year-old Turkish baklava chain that offers an almost ubelievable 14 varieties of baklava alone, not to mention other assorted filo-based pastries. There's been a branch on Coney Island Avenue in Brooklyn for five years, but Manhattan has just gotten its own Gulluoglu. A series of luncheon dishes, including several salads, has been added to the menu, and the Manhattan branch also offers egg breakfasts, too.

The entree was called "sausage sandwich Istanbul style," which got me salivating in anticipation. When it turned out to be a gussied-up hot dog, I was at first slightly disappointed, but gradually my anthropological interests got the better of me. The sausage is a bland, German-style weiner, the kind that America adapted and made much better. It's been cross-hatched to facilitate boiling, and comes sided with mayo and ketchup. The pickle spears make it all worthwhile.
982 Second Avenue,

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Brooklyn Gets Its Own Kosher Hot Dog Eating Contest


Jews know a thing or two about overeating, so it's only fitting that a contest has been created specifically to encourage the practice. On Sunday, October 25, Brooklyn will hold its first kosher hot dog eating contest at Brooklyn Burger Boyz, a restaurant located on the kosher stronghold of Kings Highway. The hot dogs will be from Abeles & Heymann, a 55-year-old Bronx-based company that also produces more rarefied old-school favorites like rauchfleisch (a German cold cut made from thinly sliced smoked beef), liverwurst, and cervelat (a type of cooked sausage). And the contest's organizers are raising the stakes, limiting consumption to a mere five minutes instead of the 12 minutes that Nathan's permits; one of the organizers has termed it a "hot dog sprint eating contest." All of which begs the question our grandmother would ask: "But is it good for the Jews?"

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


Make your own Corn Dogs

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup yellow cornmeal (fine ground)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 egg
1 1/4 cups buttermilk
1 1/2 teaspoons honey
1 1/2 quarts v
egetable oil (or enough to fill a large skillet to a depth of 1 inch)
10 (7"- to 8") wooden skewers
10 Hebrew National Reduced Fat Beef Franks (or other thin Hot Dog)

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, baking soda and powder, salt and cayenne. Set aside.

In another medium bowl, whisk the egg until frothy, then add the buttermilk and honey and whisk until incorporated.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry, and gently stir with a wooden spoon until just incorporated. Do not overmix. The batter should be very thick and slightly lumpy.

Ladle some of the batter into a tall drinking glass, slightly longer than the hot dog.

In a large, deep skillet or a deep fryer, heat about 1 inch of oil to between 350 degrees and 375 degrees. Heat the oven to 275 degrees (the oven is used to keep the finished corn dogs warm while the others cook).

One at a time, skewer each hot dog, inserting a wooden skewer through one tip of the Dog and pushing it about halfway up the length of it. Dip the skewered Hot Dog into the glass of batter, slowly twirling it as you pull it out to ensure an even coating of batter.

Place the skewered Hot Dog into the oil (the stick can go in the oil). Fry, using tongs to turn the Corn Dogs occasionally, until all sides are a deep golden brown, about 30 to 45 seconds. Two to 3 Hot Dogs can be fried at a time.

Transfer the Corn Dogs to papers towels to drain, then place them on a baking sheet in the oven. Repeat with remaining Hot Dogs.


The Hot Dog Kids

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Looking for New Hot Dog info again

Sorry I haven't been able to keep up the blog in the past few months. I had surgery and have been off of my feet for awhile. Now back looking for the best Hot Dog places and all the news about Hot Dogs

Good Eating

The Hot Dog Kids