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Bunless Fajita Dogs

Thursday, April 30th, 2015

What a week it’s been! I was lucky enough to attend a fabulous food photography class by Andrew Scrivani, food photographer extraordinaire and regular contributor to The New York Times. The class was hosted at the B&H Photo Event Space, which offers lots of free seminars and inspirational lectures. It was my first time going, and I’m definitely going to keep my eye out for more great workshops!

I took a lot out of the class, and I’m sharing it with you here, mostly in my pictures. Andrew spoke about many different aspects of food photography, but what really got me was how he said that our food photos should tell a story. They should evoke emotion in the reader, drawing them into the photo and the scene. I’m only fairly new to “decent” food photography, I’m slowly learning and growing with each blog post, but I really tried to incorporate that into these photos. Let me know what you think!

Now aside from the amazing food photography class, I also took part in a really fun fundraising event for the Ha’or Beacon school. I had never heard of Ha’or Beacon before, but just working with the thoughtful and caring staff on the Culinary for a Cause fundraiser, gave me a small glimpse into the type of people running the special needs school. Aside for a Chinese Auction, the entertainment for the evening was a roundup of cooking demonstrations by yours truly and a few other famous kosher foodies, including OvertimeCook, The Aussie Gourmet, Dini Delivers, Joy of Kosher Magazine Editor, Shifra Klein, and Victoria Dweck, cookbook author and editor of Ami Magazine.

Each of us was assigned a different course to demonstrate including Hors D’oeuvres, Appetizer, Entree, Side Dishes and Dessert. I made the hors d’oeuvres of mini Asian turkey sliders on a cauliflower bun with quick pickled cucumbers and spicy mayo. I really wanted to show people how easy it to make cauliflower-everything (rice, couscous, pizza crust and buns) so I decided on that dish. Needless to say, it was super fun and great to meet so many of my fans!

Now the one thing I didn’t do at the event, was eat. Yes, I tried my turkey sliders but Victoria’s braised short ribs were off limits, not to mention Dini’s quinoa-corn cakes and Miriam’s chocolate crepes. I’m going strong on The South Beach Diet, and I won’t cheat for ‘nothin!


In fact, I’ve really upped my ante by joining a fitness regimen at The Space Brooklyn. They are hosting a 60 day challenge, where they are encouraging participants to get healthy via the mind and body by doing 30 workouts in 60 days. Their amazing lineup of classes helps me mix it up, so that I’m not bored or dreading my workouts. So far I’ve done a yoga class, a circus arts class, a barre burn class, and pilates is on the schedule for tomorrow.

I’m charlie horse in muscles that I didn’t know existed, but I feel so strong and healthy! I’m looking forward to attending some of the other nutrition-based classes that they are featuring during the #30in60 campaign (one of which will include me and my spiralizer!)

So, back to the food, ‘cuz that’s what it always boils down to, right?! Today I’m sharing a favorite dish and a favorite trick. First, how on earth will I get through BBQ season on South Beach?! Well, I”ll tell you…BUNLESS HOT DOGS are the thing! Turning your hot,dog into its own bun is a diet lifesaver! You’ll be amazed at how a simple slit in your hot dog will open up when it’s heated and the filling possibilities are endless!


Fajita spiced peppers and onions are my absolute fave, and I’m sharing my own homemade spice mix below! With no carbs or MSG, it’s great on chicken or beef, perfect in tacos, and definitely over hot dogs. Finish with some sauerkraut (fermented foods are top of the food chain these days) and salsa, and you’ve got yourself a carbless meal that’s filling AND delicious!



Bunless hot dogs are best made with a nice hefty dog, so Abeles & Heymann’s knockwurst are my go-to. I love that they use natural nitrates found in celery and cherry, so there’s nothing artificial about them. In fact, ever since I went down to the factory for a tour, I don’t feel guilty about eating hot dogs at all. They start with real pieces of meat, not the fatty trimmings that I always imagined, to produce an extremely flavorful dog that is unmatched in the kosher industry. Quality and flavor? I”ll take two, please.

What’s your favorite way to top off your hot dog? Share it with me in the comments below!

This post is sponsored by Abeles & Heymann. Follow them on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter

Other Hot Dog Recipes:

hot dog eggrolls
spiralized spud dogs
kid friendly dirty rice
fire roasted tomato rice stoup

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Hot Dog Eggrolls

Monday, December 22nd, 2014

I don’t know about you, but as we inch our way towards the end of Chanukah, I’m slowly getting bored of all the dairy dishes I’ve been having. I’ve had my fill of donuts and latkes and I need something a little different! We still have a few more days to indulge in fried foods and I’ve got you covered. These hot dog eggrolls are just the thing!

Now, I know what you’re thinking. 6 days of loading up on trash and she’s trying to get me to eat hot dogs now?!  YES! You see, I had a huge misconception about hot dogs until I stepped into the Abeles & Heymann factory. Seth Leavitt, the company’s owner, took me behind the scenes for some hot dog education.

Before I even stepped foot in the factory, I had to stand in a box of cleaning solution, to clean my shoes before heading in. This level of hygiene continued throughout my tour, with every step of the process being meticulously clean. I even had to wear a hairnet and labcoat! (check out my Instagram feed for pics!)

Abeles & Heymann hot dogs can be found in stadiums around the country. And for good reason. They start with a REAL cut of meat. I always thought that hot dogs were made from complete junk but I was shocked to see the quality of the meat that’s used in it’s production. It looked just like any large roast you’d purchase at the butcher. From there, Abeles & Heymann uses old world recipes with quality ingredients to produce premium hot dogs that are slow cooked to perfection. Their franks contain no fillers, and their new reduced fat and sodium line has no added nitrates or nitrites!

Abeles & Heymann is at the forefront of an innovative campaign to create healthier alternatives to chemical and artificial nitrates. They have pioneered the use of natural nitrates, celery and cherry, to create a fully-cooked uncured collection of no-nitrate-added hot dogs. When Seth gave me a few packages to try, I turned to my most opinionated taste testers – my kids! My pickiest daughter, who can barely finish a single hot dog in one seating, asked for seconds. And I didn’t have to feel guilty about giving it to her! I would call that a winner!

Now that we don’t have to feel guilty about eating hot dogs, we can go ahead with our hot dog eggrolls! These crispy, dippable appetizers make the perfect addition to your Chanukah party, Superbowl bash, or New Years event! You can even bake them for a reduced fat version.

I filled the hot dog eggrolls with traditional frank condiments like sauerkraut and pickle relish. You can feel free to get creative with fillings like sauteed onions, facon, coleslaw or even chili! The dipping sauce combines sweet apricot jam with Abeles & Heymann’s sweet and tangy mustard for the perfect bite!

If you’re wondering where to pick up some Abeles & Heymann bounty, their amazing collection of hot dogs and salami’s can be found in stores throughout the U.S. Alternatively, you can purchase them online at the Abeles & Heymann store. And for a limited time, enjoy 15% off your order, using coupon code BUSY!


Don’t forget to check out the Abeles & Heymann blog and follow them on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter!

This post was sponsored by Abeles & Heymann

Other hot dog recipes:

spiralized spud dogs
kid-friendly dirty rice
fire-roasted tomato rice stoup

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Spiralized Spud Dogs

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

Every since I got my spiralizer, my mind is racing with spiralized recipes. I can’t get enough! From fun curly fries, to healthy zoodle (zucchini noodle) dishes, and creative rice recipes, this compact machine is a powerhouse of possibilities!

What don’t I love about the spiralizer? It’s easy to use, requires little muscle and fits easily into my small kitchen. The blades tuck right into the machine for easy storage.

Sure, I have a julienne peeler, and even the vegemagic gadget, but they don’t come close to creating authentic-looking noodles with as much ease as the Paderno spiralizer. I’ve spiralized russet potatoes, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, beets, carrots, apples, cucumbers, and zucchini’s (my favorite!).

The great thing about spiralized veggies are the endless possiblities. Sure you can make noodles – but you can also pulse them in a food processor to make veggie “rice”. Or you can mix some noodles with spices and eggs and stuff them into ramekins to make “buns” or “latkes”. I weigh down the mixture with a can to form patties and pan-fry or bake until crispy and tender. I do the same to make a “pizza pie” or “rosti” in a frying pan. Such fun ways with veggies, right? It makes dieting SO much easier!

So enough about spiralizing in general…lets get into specifics! Would you look at these ADORABLE spud dogs??? How cute are they?!

Wrapped in spiralized potatoes, these crispy spud dogs are like french-fry-wrapped franks – two favorite BBQ dishes in one! I was SO excited when I came up with the idea – but I was equally lost by what to call them. So, I did what any blogger would do – I made a #NAMETHISRECIPE contest! My Instagram readers really pulled out all the stops on this one, with creative names like “The Tatered Dog”, Dog-Eat-Chips, “Doggie Fries”, SlinkyDog, “Twisty Frank”, FrankNFries, “Piggy In a Slinky”, “The French Dog”, DogNChips and more! But my all time favorite was “Spud Dog”, a name that both Esther Chase and Perry Wolff came up with. They both won a copy of my ebook and the title of an innovative new way to serve up an American favorite.

I think the best part of this recipe is that it’s not a recipe at all. You can make the potatoes thick or thin, or wrap them up in ribbon slices. Spice them up with your favorite french-fry seasoning, or keep them simple! Roast or pan-fry, fill or top them – any way you go, they’re sure to be a crowd-pleaser!

 

Other Labor Day BBQ recipes:

grilled marinated chicken
grilled corn with za’atar garlic butter
grilled chickpea burgers
portobello burgers with sundried tomato aioli
best BBQ potato salad

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