Thursday, June 26, 2014

World Famous Chili Dogs!

By World Famous, I mean famous in my son and I love these Chili Dogs!  I think this is probably the best Chili Dog I've ever had, but my son tells me that he thinks Ben's Chili Bowl in Washington D.C. has better Chili Dogs.  My recommendation is to make this recipe, then go to D.C. and try Ben's.  After that, you can make up your own mind.

The key to a great Chili Dog is the Chili, or Chili Sauce.  I don't make a traditional chili for my chili dogs.  Instead, I make a chili sauce.  I've been playing with this recipe for at least a year, and I think it's now ready for posting.  You really need the Hot Dog with this as the chili isn't fantastic on it's own.  It's very good chili on it's own, but better on a hot dog.

Here's the recipe for my chili sauce:

1 lb ground beef
1 8 oz. can tomato sauce
1/2 Cup Ketchup
1/2 Cup Beef Stock
1 TBSP Chili Powder
1/2 tsp Onion Powder
1/2 tsp Garlic Powder
1/2 tsp Kosher Salt
1/2 tsp Black Pepper
1/2 tsp Worcestershire Sauce

1.  Brown the ground beef.
2.  Once browned, drain off the fat, then add the remaining ingredients. Bring to a simmer and allow to cook for 20 minutes.  Serve with a premium all beef hot dog, such as Nathan's Famous.

I love this chili sauce and the resulting Chili Dogs.  The sauce makes for a pretty complex flavor.  It's tangy with a little spiciness and a deep chili flavor.  When paired with a top quality hot dog, it's magic.

On my chili dogs, I like to add cheddar cheese and some type of onion, either a raw yellow onion or a french friend onion.  I've also tried jalapenos and bacon...that's right...bacon.  Give this a shot.  I think you'll really like it!

Sunday, June 15, 2014

The Best BBQ Sauce...In my opinion anyway

One more recipe today.  This is my go to BBQ sauce.  I based this off the Neely's recipe from Food Network.  I've tweaked it some to get it to taste like I want it to.  This is a sweet sauce, with a peppery bite.  It's similar to Famous Dave's Rich and Sassy.

2 Cups Ketchup (I prefer Hunt's Natural)
1 Cup Water
1/2 Cup Apple Cider Vinegar
5 TBSP Brown Sugar
5 TBSP White Sugar
1/2 TBSP Black Pepper
1/2 TBSP Onion Powder
1/2 TBSP Garlic Powder
1/2 TBSP Ground Mustard
1 TBSP Lemon Juice
1 TBSP Worcestershire
1/2 TBSP Hickory Liquid Smoke

1.  Combine all ingredients in a medium sauce pan.
2.  Bring to a simmer and cook for 1 hour and 15 minutes, stirring frequently.

This is a great sauce.  I prefer it to any other sauce I've tried.  I've also modified it in the past to create a spicier sauce.  One quick modification to get a spicier sauce is to leave the white sugar out, add at least a TBSP of Chili Powder and double the Black Pepper.

As with my pork rub, I recommend you use this as a base for a sauce and then tweak the ingredients and quantities to get a sauce that you like.  I think you'll find you can do better than any store bought sauce.

My Pork Rub Recipe

A friend asked me to share my pork rub recipe, and I've also promised to do so in prior posts.  So here it is...this is a sweet rub with a little heat at the back end.  It produces a great bark and seems to be good on any pork product you want to put out there.

1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
1/4 Cup Paprika
1 TBSP Black Pepper
1 TBSP Salt
1 TBSP Chili Powder
1 TBSP Onion Powder
1 TBSP Garlic Powder
1 tsp Cayenne Pepper
1 tsp Cinnamon

1.  Place all ingredients in a food processor.
2.  Blend for 15-20 seconds to break up the brown sugar.
3.  Sprinkle over pork butt, ribs, loin, etc.

I love this rub on pork.  I may try adding some ginger to it in the future, just to play around with different flavors.  I recommend you use this as a base rub and then play with the ingredients and quantities until you find a flavor you like.