In our family, and among our friends, there's a lot of grilling going on in the summer months.
Given the German heritage of Milwaukee, the sausage is is very much a part of our city's culture. Have you ever watched a Brewers game to see the sausages (people dressed in various sausage costumes) race around the bases? Only in Milwaukee! We have several wonderful sausage manufacturers in or near Milwaukee Usingers, Klements and Johnsonville (best known for their brats). Here is a little hot dog history if you are interested.
When I saw this recipe for Crosshatch Hot dogs on Food and Wine, I almost couldn't believe my eyes! A hot dog recipe with complex flavors and topped with a tangy, spicy slaw and served on a toasted croissant with Dijon butter? Oh my! This is not your father's hot dog!
The original recipe calls for cabbage with red chili peppers tossed with in a tangy vinaigrette to be served with the hot dogs.
My personal twist on the recipe was to grill the cabbage and peppers and add some grilled vidalia onions!
The cabbage and peppers are then thinly sliced and the onions diced and mixed with the vinaigrette.
The croissants are spread with a butter and Dijon mustard mixture and then grilled:
The sausages (in my case, Usingers all beef franks) are then thread onto skewers, crosshatch marks made around each hot dog, and then they are brushed with a soy, ketchup and minced garlic sauce...
...and grilled. The grilled frank and slaw are then placed on the grilled croissant for one of the best hot dogs you will ever taste - I promise you! My husband declared this recipe "Fantastic"! You may want to treat your father to this flavorful recipe on Father's Day.
Adapted from Food and Wine with my variation on the slaw
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon honey
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon sherry vinegar
6 cups finely grilled and sliced green cabbage (I used Savoy)
1 large Vidalia or other sweet onion, sliced into thick rounds
3 fresh red chiles, seeded and thinly sliced
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
4 croissants, split
4 large hot dogs
2 tablespoons ketchup
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon vegetable oil
1 large garlic clove, minced
Rinse cabbage and cut in half. Peel and cut onion into thick slices. Cut red chilies in half and remove the seeds. Brush the cabbage, onion and chili peppers with canola oil and grill over high heat until slightly charred on both sides - about 6 minutes on each side. Allow to cool slightly and then slice cabbage and chili peppers and dice onions.
In a large bowl, stir the honey with the sherry vinegar until the honey is dissolved. Add the grilled, shredded cabbage, red chilies and onions, season with salt and toss. This can be prepared in advance.
In a small bowl, blend the butter and the mustard and then spread thinly on the cut sides of the croissants.
Thread each hot dog lengthwise onto a skewer. Using a sharp knife, make shallow cuts at 1/2 inch intervals down the length of each hot dog, three times around. The cuts will look like crescents. Run the knife down the center of the cuts to 'crosshatch' the crescents.
Mix the ketchup with the soy sauce, oil and garlic. Brush each hot dog with he mixture. Any remaining ketchup mixture can be brushed on during grilling.
Grill the cut side of the croissants over high heat until toasted, approximately 30 seconds. Then turn and grill the other side for about 10 seconds.
Grill the hot dogs until charred and the cuts open, for approximately 2-4 minutes, turning frequently. Place the cabbage salad on one half of each croissant, top with a hot dog and serve.
Advance preparation: The cabbage salad and hot dogs, brushed with soy sauce mixture, can be kept, covered overnight, in the refrigerator.