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Not Your Average Hotdogs

June 2, 2014

Summertime is grill time at our house. I’m sure you’re much the same as our family when the weather gets warmer. Outdoor activities and busy schedules tend to make dinner later in the day, which works out just fine, since our daylight hours are so much longer. We often opt for grilling, rather than heating up the house with indoor cooking, on those summer nights. There’s nothing that can compare to delicious, smoky, summertime BBQ and all the flavors that embodies, but even if you’re in a hurry or just looking for something simple to get a creative and delicious dinner on the table quickly, your grill and a quick -fix relish recipe can still be the solution. I think your whole family will enjoy this recipe for Veggie Slaw Relish. It’s great on burgers or hotdogs and on this particular night, we used it to top Barbecue Cheese Dogs.

The core of any good hotdog is, of course, the meat. I love OSCAR MAYER Selects Uncured Angus Bun-Length Beef Franks. Always on the lookout for best value, great prices and savings, I am not, typically, a brand-loyal shopper, with the exception of a short list of around half a dozen products. OSCAR MAYER hotdogs are on that list and have been for 20 years. For the sandwich part of our barbecue cheese dogs, I also used KRAFT Honey Hickory Smoke Barbecue Sauce and KRAFT American Singles. Every good hotdog needs a vessel, too. Standard hotdog buns would work fine for these, if you have them on hand, but I used my own homemade mini baguettes, which incorporated some delicious, nutty whole-grain and fiber into our meal and held up fabulously to sauce, cheese and time on the grill.

Before you build these savory dogs, you’ll need to mix up the Veggie Slaw Relish, though. This recipe is super simple and I love the contrast of textures and tastes between the slightly sweet and sour dressing over crunchy, fresh vegetables and the softer, smoky, savory hotdog. I hope your family enjoys this versatile recipe as much as mine. You can easily substitute vegetables you have on hand, or ones you know are your kids’ favorites. Go for a wide range of bright colors and crisp, crunchy texture, when making your selections. I think cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli and asparagus would also be great in this! And as I mentioned, this is just as good on burgers as hotdogs, so it’s a good staple to keep on hand in the fridge, this summer.

Peel the cucumber and scoop out the seeds. Mince it up. I wanted longer shreds of the zucchini and carrot, so I held them vertically to grate, instead of horizontally. Then I minced the celery, bell pepper and onion. It’s as easy as tossing all the veggies into a bowl and mixing them up! Now, mix up a scrumptious dressing and let the slaw marinate while you prepare the barbecue cheese dogs.

Just follow the easy directions on your GOOD SEASONS Dressing packet to mix up the delicious slaw marinade. The only thing I did differently was to add sugar in the second step. The cruet is really nice, because it’s got fill lines marked for the vinegar, water and olive oil. Put everything in, give it a shake and voila! The seasonings are already pre-measured for maximum flavor, so it’s just that easy to prepare a fresh, delicious dressing in your own kitchen! Yum!

Once the slaw is marinating in the fridge, grill the hotdogs, prep your buns or baguettes and build these delicious Barbecue Cheese Dogs with Veggie Slaw Relish. I sliced a thin layer off the top of my baguettes, hollowed out the centers and set aside the removed bread. (It makes fantastic croutons or bread crumbs to use in other recipes.) Then I brushed the inside of the baguette “boat” with barbecue sauce, added a grilled hotdog, topped it with cheese and then cradled the whole thing in a piece of aluminum foil. When you have all 8 cradled in foil, put them back on the grill just long enough for the cheese to melt and the baguettes to warm. Remove from the grill, top with Veggie Slaw Relish and enjoy! Mandarin Orange Salad and steamed broccoli were excellent side dishes for this flavor-packed sandwich.

Click here for the full recipe: Barbecue Cheese Dogs with Veggie Slaw Relish.

For more recipes and ideas, visit my blog at busy-at-home.com/blog/.

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