We all know what a hotdog is, even if we’d rather not think about the mystery meat used to make it. And in the US, we sure love it. Americans consume more than 7 billion of these famous sausages, and that’s just during the summer months. In 2018, we spent more than $3 billion on these hotdogs.
Some hotdogs are simple, and you pay only $3.50 for a hotdog at Dairy Queen. But other places can be a lot more expensive, and may come with lots of other toppings as well.
We’re not the only ones in the world who love hotdogs. But in many places, they sure have a different idea of what a “hotdog” means. And some of these versions of hotdogs are sure strange.
Let’s check out some examples that may not resemble a US hotdog all that much:
1. Choripán, Argentina
At first glance, this is very familiar as you have a sausage in a bun. But then again, this isn’t the meat you’re used to. Instead, it’s actually made of chorizo, which is actually far better than the usual hotdog meat we eat. It’s also seared, so it’s crispier than usual.
Even the buns are toasted so they’re crunchy. The toppings are also often unusual as well, since they generally include tomato salsa or chimichurri sauce.
2. Da Chang Bao Xiao Chang, Taiwan
The literal translation of the name is “big sausage wrap little sausage”. That’s actually quite accurate, even if it looks like your standard hotdog. That’s because the hotdog bun is really a sliced sausage, although this time this “sausage” is made with sticky rice.
These hotdog sandwiches are rather smaller than average, but they sure don’t lack for taste. Common toppings include garlic, lettuce, and salted vegetables. Many folks also customize their hotdogs by adding with sauces and flavors like wasabi and black pepper. The small size makes sense, since you’re less likely to make a mess while eating this.
3. Khanom Tokyo Hotdog, Thailand
This isn’t so much a hotdog sandwich as it is a hotdog pancake. You don’t have the hotdog in a bun. Instead, you have the hotdog with the pancake wrapped around it.
Like our hotdogs in the US, this can be quite plain and served as is. But others are more complicated, and often they may contain sweets so it can work as dessert. You may find your Khanom Tokyo with cream added in, or even some quail eggs.
4. Completo Hotdog, Brazil
Saying this is “complete” isn’t really an exaggeration, seeing just how huge the dish really is. It’s a veritable feast, even if the street price is the equivalent of a single US dollar. You’ll often find this in street carts at nights.
For your money, you don’t just get the hotdog. You also get ground beef as your other meat along with diced ham or bacon. You also get other ingredients like tomatoes, bell peppers, canned corn, onions, Parmesan cheese, peas, cilantro, shredded carrots, potato sticks, and a hardboiled quail egg to top it all off.
Some vendors also lay the bun on the dish, and on a bed of mashed potatoes to boot. This isn’t a snack or a dessert. It’s basically a huge meal.
5. Puka Dog, Hawaii
The hotdog tradition her is largely due to Hawaii’s geographical position and history with immigrants from the US mainland, Europe, China, and Japan. That’s why you have many different types of hotdogs here.
There are the scarlet Hawaiian Winners, the Portuguese sausage (served in sweet buns or over rice), waffle dog, Japanese-style Arabiki, hotdogs wrapped in seaweed and sticky rice, and hotdogs dipped in donut batter. There’s even a Spam hotdog.
The Puka Dog is a special variant, as it starts with a grilled Polish sausage set into a special hollow loaf. It’s then dressed with fruit relishes, tropical mustards, and lemon garlic sauce, among other things.
6. Pølse Hotdog, Denmark
While people in many countries consider the hotdog as just a snack or street food, the Danes also serve their pølse for special occasions like weddings and Easter Sunday.
The hotdog comes with an especially lively red color, and this color comes with a rather interesting history. Apparently, back in the 1920s, the vendors in Denmark knew their hotdogs weren’t all that tasty, so they made it look better by dipping the hotdogs in red dye.
These days, the color remains the same but the taste is thankfully better. It also helps that lots of hotdogs include Danish remoulade, along with ketchup, mustard, sliced pickles, and onions.
These are just a sample of how differently people around the world view hotdogs their own way. But they’re all similar, as they’re all tasty and great for BBQs and gatherings with friends. If you ever go out of the US, then you really ought to try how other countries serve their hotdogs!
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