Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Zesty Corndogs

For years I have been longingly gazing at the packages of corndogs in the freezer section of my local mega mart. I decided if I was going to make my favorite local fair concession worth the calories, I needed to make it myself.


1 C of cornmeal
1 C of AP flour
¼ t of salt
¼ t of cayenne pepper
¼ C of sugar
4 t of baking powder
1 egg
1 C of milk
1 large jalapeño seeded and minced
16 hotdogs
16 wooden skewers (I used disposable chop sticks)
4 T of corn starch for dredging


Heat oil in a deep fryer, deep skillet, or dutch oven to 375.

Combine the cornmeal, flour, salt, cayenne pepper, sugar, and baking powder in one bowl. Beat the egg into the milk and jalapeño. Mix the wet ingredients with the dry team, and thoroughly combine. Pour the batter into a tall cup; this makes it easier to coat the hot dogs. Skewer the hotdogs on your choice of skewer; I used chop sticks that are still connected because they make it easier to flip during cooking.

Spread the corn starch on a plate and lightly coat each hotdog being sure to rub off any excess. Why the corn starch? The dredge creates a starch layer that will help the batter stick to the hotdog. Either too much or too little and the batter could just sort of slide off after it’s cooked, and then you just have a hotdog on a stick, which, while still tasty, is not the desired result. After the dredge is applied, dip the hotdog in the batter and then straight into the oil.

This part can be a bit challenging, but it mostly just requires you to pay attention. As with all frying, and most cooking, temperature control is essential. Be sure to pay attention to the temperature of the oil. Ride the temperature control to make sure the oil stays around 375. If it gets too hot, the outside will get all burned and greasy before the inside is cooked. If it gets too cold, the outside will get to greasy and won’t get a nice crust by the time the inside is cooked. If you do your job right, the breading will be golden brown and not greasy when it is done.

Cook for 2-3 minutes until golden brown and then move straight onto a draining rig. I use as paper towel lined baking sheet. Let them rest for a few minutes and then consume with ketchup or mustard.

A note about jalapeños: the capsaicin, what makes peppers hot, is mostly in the seeds. So, if you remove the seeds from them, they lose the vast majority of their heat. But, be careful handling them, the capsaicin will stick to your fingers and washing your hands will not remove it. If you don’t want to experience a new kind of pain the next time you rub your eyes, blow your nose, or go to the bathroom, use latex gloves or dip your fingers in a bleach solution after handling them.

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