Cheeseburger Dogs with Special Sauce
Just to echo the general sentiment on the Internets right now…
How the hell is it already Labor Day??!!!
I’m heading up to Maine tomorrow, and while I’m giddy at the thought of being surrounded by my favorite people in my happy place, I feel a little bit sad and a lot alarmed that the summer has come and (almost) gone.
I’m guessing the combination of honeymoon and book writing (T-2 months to deadline…cue shrieks of terror) is responsible, but I don’t think a summer has ever flown by quite like this one. I realized this morning that in addition to being sickly pale and not having had a single picnic, I’ve only eaten one meal cooked on a real live grill this season. FOR SHAME! I love me some grill pan action, but it’s not the same. It’s just not.
Funnily enough the aforementioned grilling took place in Maine over Memorial Day, so I suppose this shall be the summer of bookended bbq meals, since I plan to crush many a grilled delicacy come Sunday night. If there can’t be Rubirosa, there shall be burgers and dogs!! Or in my case, a CHEESEBURGER DOG. (And this mac and cheese. Duh.)
If you’re not familiar with the burger dog, I am thrilled to introduce you to this simple yet beautiful creation: two butterflied hot dogs, lightly charred and topped with melted cheese (I vote for good ol’ American, but you do you), lettuce, tomato, and plenty of special sauce. It’s the hybrid sandwich of my dreams and is perfect for weirdos like me that love hot dogs but much prefer burger fixings. Heaven.
The thing that really puts these burger dogs over the top flavorwise is the special sauce, which ranks in my top 3 homemade condiments of all time (after Srirachup and Spicy Almond Dressing). This is actually the special sauce recipe from The Dude Diet—my go-to for everything from burgers to chicken fingers—and it’s the perfect balance of creamy, sweet, tangy and spicy. It does involve a touch of the devil’s condiment mayo (somehow I still love it despite my general anti-mayo stance), but if you’re extremely averse to the stuff, just use all Greek yogurt.
For those throwing end of summer soirées this weekend, I think these burger dogs would make adorable sliders for a crowd. Simply cut each dog in half crosswise, and serve them on slider buns (big fan of Martins party potato rolls) with chopped lettuce and cherry tomato rounds. People LOVE tiny food, and I’m squealing internally at the mere thought of the mini burger dog cuteness.
Happy long weekending, friends and lovahhhhs!! I hope it’s filled with the best weather, friends, food, and summer bucket list activities. Catch you on the flip.
p.s. If you need some more recipe inspiration for the long weekend, this roundup is filled with summery ideas.
Cheeseburger Dogs with Special Sauce Serves 4
8 100% beef hot dogs (I like Applegate Organics.)
4 slices American cheese
4 hamburger buns
1 large tomato sliced into rounds
1 Romaine heart torn into large pieces
For the Special Sauce:
5 tablespoons minced bread and butter pickles
¼ cup non-fat plain Greek yogurt
3 tablespoons ketchup
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 tablespoon Sriracha
1 clove garlic, grated or finely minced
¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
-In a small bowl, combine all the ingredients for the special sauce. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
-Preheat a lightly oiled grill or grill pan over medium-high heat.
-Butterfly the hot dogs! Slice each hot dog lengthwise almost all the way through—you want the dog to remain attached on one side—then fold it open like a book.
-Grill the dogs for about 4 to 5 minutes per side or until lightly charred.
-During the last 2 minutes of cook time, arrange the dogs into 4 pairs of side-by-side dogs. (These are your “patties.”) Top each pair with a slice of cheese and allow it to melt.
-If you like grilled buns (who doesn’t?), place the buns on the grill cut side down on the grill for about 30 seconds to 1 minute, just until grill marks appear. Add a burger dog to the bottom of each bun and top with tomato, lettuce, and plenty of special sauce. Sandwich everything together and go to town.
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