Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Every dog has its day

I was perusing Off the Broiler yesterday and I discovered this: a Paterson, NJ delicacy called the Hot Texas Weiner. Now Texas isn’t really known for its hot dogs. Corny dogs, sure, but when I was growing up, the biggest hot dog chain in Houston was called Coney Island and that says a lot. No, when I think of great hot dogs, I think of boiled Chicago dogs with their poppy-seed buns, their pickles, their tomatoes, their peppers and their dash of celery salt, or I think of New York’s all-beef dogs grilled and served with steamed onion sauce, sauerkraut and mustard.

I asked what's Texan about a Hot Texas Wiener, and well, nothing, really. Perhaps it's the chili, mustard and onions. But I think it's more likely another case of co-opting the Texas brand to conjure up something more glamorous. And can you really blame the hot-dog makers of Paterson? With all due respect, a Paterson, NJ dog just doesn’t sound as tasty as a Hot Texas Weiner. So if I can figure out how to get to Paterson, NJ, I’ll definitely give it a try. At least it sounds more Texan than the Ritz's Texas Breakfast.

Have you ever had a Hot Texas Weiner? What’s your favorite way to eat a hot dog?

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Yvo said...

I was just thinking while reading your blog about how hot dogs are kosher [sometimes] (don't ask why I thought of that) and how I inevitably turn it un-kosher. (Not that I'd ever need to keep kosher, being Asian and marrying an Italian person...) - If I'm getting them from 7-11 or any sort of grody convenience store that has them spinning, I put their chili and cheese sauce on it. If I'm at the stadium, - well Yankees Stadium doesn't have relish *argh* so sometimes I bring my own, with a bit of ketchup and mustard, if I forget the relish I eat it that way. At home, bunless, with relish alone or relish mixed with a bit of ketchup and/or mustard.

But always bunless, so I can eat another one :)

Homesick Texan said...

Chili and cheese can make any dog good. And how amazing that you bring your own relish to Yankee Stadium--how do you transport it?

christine (myplateoryours) said...

Been a long time, but I was always an onion, sauerkraut and mustard girl.

Yvo said...

Sorry, I just realized my comment was a bit confusing... haha. What I meant was, at Yankees stadium, I generally put ketchup and a bit of mustard, and if I remember to bring some, I add relish to that mix. Otherwise I eat it with just mustard/ketchup. The relish-transportation problem is easily solved - I don't make my own - in my company cafeteria there's a condiment section that always has relish packets. A bit chintzy, to be sure, but sometimes the hotdog just needs that little pickle kick, imo.

vlb5757 said...

When I was a little girl and my grandfather knew we were coming for a visit, he would go to the local butcher and have them weight out a pound or so of some red weiners. They were all connected to one another. My grandmother would boil them and we got a nice soft bun. They snapped when you bit into them. So I started calling them "Crunchy Weinies". I think it was just the casing and all the red dye they used back then, but man o man were they good!

Homesick Texan said...

Christine--such a classic, NY dog. Believe it or not, I like mayo on my dogs. Gross, I know.

Yvo--thanks for clarifying--I had an image of you hauling a big jar of relish to the games!

Vlb5757--Crunchy weinies sound soooo delish. I love the snap of a well-grilled hot dog.

Ken Wheaton said...

If I may quote Butt-Head: "You said Hot Texas Weiner. Huh-huh-huh-huh-huh."

Anonymous said...

i googled, cranberry sauce and found your webpage..i'm going to give your recommendation and bonappetit recipe a try...thanks! i'll let you know how it is received!
from: eonisback

Homesick Houstonian said...

A Texas dog *should be* a hot dog with chili, cheese, and mustard, I would imagine if there were such a thing as a Texas Wiener, it would be some form of German Sausage. The chili and cheese is quite distinguishable from New York and Chicago's versions. I think it warrants its own genre (and in texas it was called a texas chili dog).

What's really been a mindbender for me is that Paul's Da Burger Joint in the East Village has a "Texas Burger" that consists of a hamburger with a fried egg. This is baffling, I've never seen such a thing on a Texas menu. Their "El Paso" burger would be more appropriate: Hamburger with Jalapenos and Cheddar.

Hungry Houstonian in upstate NY said...

Here in Upstate NY there are tons of places that serve "Texas Hots". I have no idea what that is exactly. *confused*
My favorite hot dog is a Chili Dog. My grandmother used to make 'em like this (and they were the best): Put mustard on a bun, insert a boiled hot dog, top with squirt can cheese (stay with me here), next comes Wolf Brand chili (no beans), and lastly, finely chopped onions. Then - put in the oven for a bit until the bun is toasty. OMG I'm hungry! :)

Anonymous said...

homesick houstonian.. egg on a burger?? and calling it a 'texas burger'??!! noooo freaking way. i was born and raised in texas and i've never seen *that*..

australians commonly put a fried egg on their burgers and it's not bad. better than the canned, sliced beet they think is so great on every sandwich served in the country.

xoxo, from a homesick austinite

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