Unusual burger toppings are all the hype right now, but why should burgers alone get all the attention? Hot dogs will be leaping into the spotlight this summer, too, as they shed their traditional relationship with ketchup and mustard in favor of some more exciting toppings (Credit: Flickr_StevenDepolo).
Recently, more chefs have been focusing on the hot dog's incredible versatility, and various states around the U.S. have been establishing their own opinions about what makes the perfect hot dog. Chefs and home cooks can expand these interesting hot dog variations beyond the U.S., however, by drawing from key cuisine ingredients from various world cultures.
As an example, restaurants and food carts like AsiaDog have been boosting hot dogs' reputation as inexpensive street food by offering customers hot dogs with an Asian twist, featuring a menu of eight hot dogs that are anything but ordinary.
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But why stop with Asian-inspired hot dogs? You can make the classic American hot dog into a vehicle for worldly cuisine by playing with all kinds of toppings. Challenge yourself at your next summer barbecue to expand your hot dog repertoire by making a hot dog with mango salsa and avocados for a Mexican influence, or a gravy-infused spoonful of mashed potatoes for a British spin.
It's time to celebrate an American staple with various toppings that give a nod to all of the different world cultures that make America the melting pot that it is. Take your next barbecue as an opportunity to explore your own cultural heritage by topping your hot dog with foods that are traditional to your family, cultural background, or ethnicity.
What better way is there to ring in the summer than with a second look at the popular, well-loved hot dog? The possibilities are endless.
- Ally Bruschi, The Daily Meal