Post by tory idiots
Van driver in his 60s is killed when concrete block 'thrown from motorway
bridge' hits his windscreen and he swerves into a tree
While looking that one up, I spotted this goodie:
How to escape from hot dog hell
26 November 2011
Snap, smoke and succulence. Three Ss essential to the ultimate hot dog, that
bread-wrapped, handheld bite of fast-food perfection.Snap, the crisp crack
as teeth meet natural casing, a twang of heavenly tone. And smoke, just a
whisper – the real stuff, of course. Then succulence, a fecundity of natural
juice that fills the mouth with liquid bliss.
Truly, the frankfurter is a noble sausage, an American icon with deep
Teutonic roots. Yet try to get your hands on the real thing over here and
bland disappointment awaits.
This is a snack of the people. It's a product that takes the cheaper bits
and makes them great
Because the average British hot dog is a disgrace – a wan, flaccid
embarrassment more suited to insulation than enjoyment. Dreary, limp and
beige, it’s little more than an industrialised cipher, a smoked-sausage
impersonator with a whiff of liquid smoke.
Forced into some stale, pappy bun, and slathered with generic mustard and
over-acidic tomato sauce, this is food as punishment rather than delight.
The frank or wiener isn’t a sausage in the proud British sense. It’s
resolutely European in genesis, descended from one of many German wursts,
brought over to America by immigrants in the late 18th and early 19th
It’s cured, smoked and precooked. And the meat ground to the very finest of
consistencies. Then boiled or grilled, depending on area and preference.
Made from pork, beef or even – horror of horrors – chicken, it developed
from handmade delicacy into mass-produced phenomenon.
As hot-dog historian Bruce Kraig writes, the hot dog ‘may have been America’s
first industrially produced, portion-controlled and mass-marketed meat
product… America’s great democratic food’. It travelled across the Atlantic
from Germany, arriving with little more than the clothes on its back. Within
a few years, though it had become the American dream made edible.
As ever, there is a whole raft of stories as to how frank met bun. And how
the term ‘hot dog’ came into being. Some tell of unseasonal cold snaps in
New York baseball stadiums, around 1901, necessitating the replacement of
ice cream with warm German sausages that looked like dachshunds, shoved in a
Others mention a Bavarian sausage seller at the 1904 St Louis World’s Fair.
He became so fed up of loaning out white gloves (so his punters could eat
their sausage without burning their hands) that he asked his brother to find
a solution. Which turned out to be the soft bun.
Fine stories, but almost certainly untrue. ‘Hot dog’ actually hailed from
the ivy-lined courtyards of Yale in the 1890s.
There was a famous lunch wagon there, ‘The Kennel Club’, better known as the
‘dog wagon’. It sold franks, and thus a legendary term was born.
But this is a snack of the people. It’s a product that takes the cheaper
bits and makes them great. You can get a couple of dogs at Gray’s Papaya in
New York or Pink’s in Los Angeles for less than a fiver, yet these are
legends of the hot-dog world.
And after many years of hot-dog hell, things are looking up for the British
devotee too. Ed’s Easy Diner (edseasydiner.com) uses Gilbert’s franks, which
are adored in America and very respectable. The same goes for the frank from
Banger Bros (bangerbros.co.uk).
The ones from Big Apple Hot Dogs in Old Street (bigapplehotdogs.com) are
better still, up there with the dog at Hawksmoor (thehawksmoor.co.uk).
So at long last, we have dogs to revere. All hail snap, smoke and