Saturday, April 14, 2007

Tijuana Dogs (or, the greatest hot dogs known to man)

Since moving from Los Angeles to St. Louis, I've really been missing some of the local flavors. Anytime you go to LA for a ball game, concert, to the museum or downtown for a stop by "The Alley", you are sure to see street vendors selling Tijuana Dogs (also known as Danger Dogs, Ghetto Dogs, Street Dogs, etc.) from little carts that consist of a heat source and a large flat cooking surface. The aroma emanating from these grills is unmistakable and magnetic, even the most squeamish of eaters will find it hard to resist . The delicious flavor is almost enough to make forget that you just bought a bacon wrapped hot dog from an unlicensed vendor in the middle of a parking lot or street corner.

Tonight I had a strong craving for this heart attack inducing treat, so I went to the local supermarket, gathered up the supplies and shortly after I was in pizza-face paradise. Here is how to make your own TJ Dogs at home.

1 package of hot dogs (any kind will do, if you want to have the full street expereince, go with something cheap)
8 strips of bacon (you want to go with something thinly sliced, go with the cheap stuff here too)
1 large onion
8 serrano chiles
Yellow Mustard

Avocado Relish Ingredients
1 medium onion
1 large tomato
1 clove garlic
1 lime
10 sprigs cilantro
1 california avocado
1-4 serrano chiles
1 pinch of salt

1. Prepare the avocado relish first by coring the tomato and slicing the serrano chiles lengthwise. Seed the chiles if you would like less heat. Finely chop the onion, tomato, garlic,cilantro and chile, place them in a bowl. Cut the avocado into 1/4" cubes and add to bowl. Cut the lime in half and squeeze over all of the ingredients, then add the salt.

2. Take a spoon and mix well. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator till later. By the time your hot dogs are done your relish will have had enough time for the flavors to mingle.

3. Slice Hotdogs lengthwise and fill with mayonnaise

4. Wrap each dog in a single slice of bacon.

5. Chop your onion into half inch wide slices and slice your serranos lengthwise, seed them if you desire less heat.

6. Put your hot dogs, onion and chiles into a skillet on medium low heat.

7. Turn hot dogs and stir the onions every 5 minutes or so till the bacon is fully cooked and the onion start to carmalize. Turn the chiles over when the hotdogs are about 1/2 way cooked.

8. When everything is just about finished cooking, add mustard, mayonnaise and ketchup to your bun and place in skillet for a minute or so.

9. Place hot dog in bun, top with onion, your grilled chiles and last add your avocado relish.

This is just one way to enjoy this awesome dog, you can also add pickle relish, crema mexicana, tapatio, cotija cheese or whatever suits you. Make sure to keep plenty of napkins on hand, because not matter what you put on them, these things are messy!

Friday, April 13, 2007

Sticking it to the man, part 2

Not to be outdone by their frugal Starbucks brethren, enterprising McDonalds fans have invented a cheap alternative to one of the chains most popular burgers. I present, the Ghetto Big Mac.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Sticking It To The Man

I know this isn't exactly new, but I stumbled across something called the "Ghetto Latte" whilst poking around the net yesterday. This is how it works:

1. Order how ever many shots of espresso you desire and a cup of ice.

2. Proceed to condiment bar and load up on Half and Half.

3. Watch pretentious "Baristas" shoot you dirty looks.

Looking at the posts from the Starbucks Gossip site, I was seriously amazed at how bent out of shape these baristas get over this. People have been figuring out ways to beat the system since the beginning of time and it's not like the $2.00 in savings is coming out of your pocket. What makes this especially bad is that Starbucks policy acutally states that the Ghetto Latte is an accepted form of customization

If I'm going to go to Starbucks, I actually prefer to buy the overpriced featured drink, but to each his own. The Ghetto Latte is perfect for college kids as they are generally looking for ways to get by on the cheap. Back in my days, it was 25¢ hamburger day and a trip to the $1 theatre every wednesday, today it's the Ghetto Latte.