I hope you know how sincere I am when I say, I'm sorry. This recipe has been in draft form for months and it is absolutely inexcusable that I never published it. Because this recipe? It's been a game changer for me.
So indulge me while I give some background. In college there was this amazing hot dog place. People would use their entire lunch break (me included) waiting in line for one of these hot dogs. Fast forward 10 years and I've eaten a lot of hot dogs in a lot of places and I still miss those hot dogs from college.
Luckily, one of my good friends--and old college roommate--has a food blog (check it out!) and her recipe is as close to the real deal as I've had. The two missing pieces were the marinade, and that sweet and tangy sauce. Using just the marinade or just the sauce will result in a great tasting hot dog (or sausage!), but both combined are key.
This is the only way I make hot dogs now. If we're invited to a bbq, we bring the hot dogs pre-marinaded and with the prepared sauce and toppings. I never thought I was a hot dog lover before, but this is the only way I'm going to make them from now on.
Gourmet Hot Dogs
(adapted from Heather Likes Food)
8 quality hot dogs or sausages
2 cloves minced garlic
1/2 cup apple cider
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup chili sauce (found in the ketchup aisle)
1/4 cup your favorite barbecue sauce
2 tablespoons honey
1/2 tablespoon soy sauce
1/2 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1) Prepare marinade by combining garlic, apple cider, and brown sugar; whisk together until sugar is dissolved. Set aside.
2) Score hot dogs with an x-pattern and place hot dogs in marinade for 30 minutes or up to overnight (longer is better).
3) While hot dogs are marinading, mix together sauce ingredients. Set aside.
4) When hot dogs are ready to cook, remove from marinade and grill until hot and slightly charred.
5) Serve hot dogs in toasted buns with prepared sauce, chopped onions, dill pickle spear, sauerkraut, and banana peppers. Enjoy!