Hot dogs were once frowned upon, and have enjoyed a resurgence in recent times. Despite this, they remain America’s most underappreciated meat – read on to find out why!
Hot dogs have grown in popularity recently, but despite this, they remain a hugely underrated choice among Americans. In the Land of the Free, the hot dog is beginning to make its presence felt after too long, in the shadow of the hamburger.
Over the years, hot dogs have faced much scrutiny from meat lovers about their contents and how they stack up against the hamburger. Due to their role as a summertime grilling staple, hot dogs are often looked down on by meat lovers, who see them as unsophisticated and unexciting. But that’s all changing!
Hot dogs are criminally underrated meat and an option that it’s time Americans rediscovered. Here are some of the best elements that make hot dogs the most underrated meat in the U.S.
They’re USDA Approved!
One of the biggest gripes people used to have with hot dogs was that they didn’t know the quality of the meat.
But in recent times, this is no longer a problem thanks to the USDA regulations and inspections, which means you can be sure your hot dog is made from real beef, chicken, pork, turkey, or any combination of those.
These regulations are in place to ensure quality control and ensure that consumers get the best-tasting meat on the market. This part of the equation is something many people aren’t yet aware of, and this changes things in terms of how hot dogs might be perceived.
Gourmet Dogs are In Vogue
Hot dogs have taken the restaurant world by storm recently, and they have become popular among gourmet chefs. Experimenting with different types of dogs and toppings has seen a dedicated following among some foodies.
The hot dog has come a long way from street carts and baseball stadium vendors and has worked its way into the fabric of the US food scene.
Blogs like Pinterest are filled to the seams with home cooks and professional chefs showcasing a range of delicious hot dog recipes and creations.
The rich history of the hot dog makes this a meat with plenty of clouts.
And, even though the original frankfurter was developed in fifteenth-century Germany, the sausage-bun-sauce combo is viewed as a quintessentially American ideal.
The hot dog perfectly blends cultures and allows eaters to experience a historical food journey of more than 500 years. This rich and varied history makes the hot dog an important part of the U.S. food scene and one that deserves some props.
The versatile nature of hot dogs has always been their biggest strength, one of the things that makes them so underrated. You can do anything with hot dogs, and it works, which is why the chili dog continues to endure, and National Corn Dog Day is a thing.
There are so many things you can do with hot dogs to complement them, whether adding multiple toppings or integrating them into other dishes, their versatility is pretty amazing.
A fuss-free, stripped-back hot dog with mustard and ketchup tastes wonderful, but you could also consider adding cheese, slaw, and jalapeños, for instance, to make the flavor profile truly exquisite.
They’ve Always Been Cool
Another thing to love about hot dogs is that they have always been the cool alternative to hamburgers.
In fact, hot dogs were the cool and trendy option for many years, and Charles Feltman recorded the first official sale in 1871, selling them from his hot dog stand on Coney Island, where he managed to sell more than 4,000 dogs in one year.
This staple of American culture worked its way through the country and has been cemented in our way of life ever since. Hot dogs are cool and have character, and they are the perfect choice for those who like to enjoy trendy, tasty meat that is a little more out of left field than the hamburger.
The Practical Sandwich of Choice
Okay, okay, so perhaps a hot dog is NOT a sandwich, or perhaps it is. The debate will rage ever on!
But this should not detract from the practicality of the tubular meat-bread combo and how it has a significant and important edge over the hamburger for this reason.
One key factor that makes hot dogs such a genius invention is that they can be effortlessly consumed with one hand, freeing up your other hand for grilling, drinking beer, high-fiving, or whatever else you wish to do with it.
Eating a burger whilst Instagramming is going to be tricky at best and messy at worst.
With a hot dog, this is no longer a problem, and its effortless practicality is a game-changer for snacking or mealtimes.
They Help You Hone Your Culinary Skills
Any aspiring chefs or cooks out there will find hot dogs an absolute delight to work with, assuming you avoid these mistakes when cooking hot dogs!
They are simple and easy to prepare, there is next to no cook time, and they allow you to get creative and adventurous with the available toppings.
Hot dogs are the weapon of choice if you want to experiment with food groups and different flavors in a fun and simple fashion.
Inexpensive, packed full of protein, and perfectly paired with any side dish, the hot dogs are an amateur chef’s dream and a hugely underrated addition to any kitchen.
Nostalgia is a Powerful Thing
One of the best things about hot dogs is the powerful sense of nostalgia they invoke. We all remember eating hot dogs as kids, maybe even hot and fresh, from a hot dog stand in downtown Manhattan.
And that feeling and memory have stayed with us through the decades.
Americans are believed to consume around 20 billion hot dogs per year, which suggests that many kids are probably enjoying them, as you no doubt did when you were young.
The nostalgic appeal of those memories – the hazy sun-drenched afternoons at the fun fair or the quick and easy dinner on a school night – combine to make hot dogs a highly underrated meat.
Hot dogs have made a huge impact on U.S. culture, and they are a practical and delicious choice for all omnivores.
However, they have remained largely underrated meat across America thus far, but fortunately, things are changing, and the future looks suitably dog-shaped!
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