I know it’s getting cold in most of the country but California is having a dang heat-wave from what I hear. So I declare one last time to break out those grills and have a BBQ. As I was watching Throwdown with Bobby Flay the other night I was awe-struck by this hot dog. It looks half “if I eat this I’m going to pay for it” and half “omgggg amazing”… it has mac & cheese on top of a hotdog. Genius! I must make it, you must make it – we must compare notes.
*I cannot find a picture of this hot dog anywhere and honestly, I don’t know if the picture would be a good idea this early on a Friday. So the picture is of his un-topped hotdogs.
-4 slices slab bacon, cut into lardons
-2 tablespoons olive oil
-2 leeks, dark green leaves trimmed, light green part halved lengthwise, then chopped into 1/4-inch slices
-3 tablespoons salted butter for a roux, plus 1 tablespoon for toasted panko bread crumbs, plus 1 tablespoon for brushing on rolls
-3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
-1 1/2 cups whole milk, heated
-8 ounces Gruyere, grated
-2 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano, grated
-Salt and freshly ground black pepper
-Pinch cayenne pepper
-Pinch ground nutmeg
-1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
-1/4 pound pasta (gemelli, or elbow shaped)
-4 hot dog buns, top sliced
-4 hot dogs, all beef with natural casing
-2 tablespoons hot sauce (recommended: Piri Piri)
-Fresh Italian parsley leaves, finely chopped
In a medium-sized saucepan, over medium heat, saute the lardons of bacon until brown and crispy. Remove the bacon from the pan and drain on paper towels. Discard the bacon fat. Put the olive oil into the same pan. Wash the chopped leeks thoroughly to remove any grit, and then drain. Put them into the pan with the olive oil and saute until soft and wilted. Remove the leeks from the pan and set aside.
Melt 3 tablespoons of butter in the same pan and then sprinkle with the flour, stirring to incorporate. Cook the roux over medium heat for a few minutes. Whisk the warm milk into the roux and cook until it thickens. Fold in the grated Gruyere and grated Parmigiano and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Add a pinch of cayenne and a pinch of nutmeg. Set the sauce aside.
Bring a large pot of salted water to boil over medium heat for the pasta.
In a small fry pan, melt 1 tablespoon of butter and add the panko. Stir constantly until the crumbs are lightly toasted. Set aside.
Preheat the grill to medium.
Once the water is boiling, add the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain and gently fold the cooked pasta into the cheese sauce and keep warm. Fold in the bacon and the leeks.
Melt the remaining tablespoon of butter and brush it on the cut sides of the buns. Grill the hot dogs over the hottest part of the barbecue until they are brown, and toast the buns around the perimeter where the fire is cooler, until you have light golden grill marks. Put 1 hot dog into each bun and generously slather with the hot sauce. Top each hot dog with a generous portion of the pasta and cheese sauce. Sprinkle with the toasted panko and chopped parsley and serve. Enjoy!