The other day, I was on a run before a football game (GO BILLS!), and I got the sudden and irresistable urge to have hot dogs for lunch. Well, not just any hot dogs…Sahlen’s brand hot dogs, which are are from Buffalo, NY…and are just awesome. BUT, I also had the situational awareness to know that if I served hot dogs to my wife for lunch, I’d end up in the “dog house,” so I had to come up with a self-preservation based solution.
I honestly had no idea how these would turn out when the idea came to me, but I knew they would have a much better chance of acceptance than hot dogs would. The basic idea was to make hot dogs out of beets. The biggest challenge was how to get the “hot dogs” to bind together. I had a few ideas:
- Basically make a carbon copy of our Beet and Quinoa Burger mixture
- Experiment with the last few okra pods we had
Since I was already going for broke with the idea, I figured to fully embrace the experimentalism and roll with the okra idea. Then, the next challenge was to figure out how to make a “casing” that would mimic a hot dog casing on the grill and get nice and crispy. For that, I decided to try using rice paper wraps…like you’d use to make Summer Rolls.
Lastly, since these taste very different from hot dogs, we were faced with a decision about what top it off with on the bun. We went with Caramelized Onions, Feta, and (not pictured) Baby Arugula. However, we think these would go well with Pesto or Garlic Aioli as a sauce, Shaved Brussels Sprouts or Caramelized Mushrooms as toppings, and Goat Cheese or Gorgonzola as the cheese.
Anyway, pardon the long write-up. Without further ado, we present Beet Hot Dogs:
Time: 20 Minutes (More if you’re using fresh beets. We used frozen for expediency and convenience sake)
- Beets (We used about 1 medium beet for 1 “hot dogs”)
- Okra (We used about 5-7 pods)
- Bread Crumbs
- Seasonings. We went with salt, pepper, and onion powder.
- Rice Paper Wraps (1 per “hot dog”)
- Microwave your frozen beets (or boil your fresh ones) until they are hot and soft.
- When they are ready, cut your beets, and put them into your food processor.
- Cut your okra, and add it to your food processor as well, and pulse to chop and combine.
- Scoop your mixture into a bowl, and stir in some bread crumbs and seasonings.
- Fire up your grill, and cover a grill safe pan with some foil. Give that a quick oil spray.
- Working one at a time, hydrate a rice paper wrap, and scoop a bunch of your beet mixture on it.
- Shape the beets to hot dog shape, and then tightly wrap your rice paper wrap around your beets, and put your “hot dog” on your foiled pan. Repeat until you’ve made all of your “hot dogs.”
- Give the tops of your “hot dogs” a quick oil spray, and put your pan on the grill for 3-4 minutes. Flip your “hot dogs,” and let them go for another 2-3 minutes. They should be golden brown and crispy (or as we say, “stokin’!”)
- Plate, devour, and enjoy!