Now what says “summer” more than Corn Dogs? The darlings of State and County fairs all across this great country, fairs which always seem to happen in the sweltering summer heat. (what is up with that!) For those of you who somehow do not know what a Corn Dog is, please allow me to enlighten you. This culinary delight consists of an American style hot dog, skewered on a stick, dipped into cornbread batter and deep-fried, served with mustard, ketchup or relish and eaten right off that stick it was fried on as you continue to stroll down the Midway. Yum, yum, yum.
Although some other versions of corn dogs can be found throughout the world, it is thought that the corn dog as I am describing it was invented in the good old U S of A sometime in the 1920’s. My husband loves Corn Dogs. How could you not…a hot dog, buttermilk cornbread batter, deep fried…it’s got it all! I have even heard tales that my husband may have survived on nothing but boxes of frozen Corn Dogs for quite some time when he was in college and his cash flow was somewhat limited. Ahhh…those were the days huh? I’m happy to say that he tells me that my home-made Corn Dogs are better than those old frozen ones from back in the day. These not only taste better than anything you’ll find lingering around in the frozen food aisle, but are pretty dang easy to make as well. And serving them up bite-sized makes them more fun. Who doesn’t love miniature sized food? They’re so small, you know there can’t be many calories in them. (what does it matter that you ate 10 or 15 of them…) And these pint-sized versions are easier to prepare than trying to fry a whole frankfurter. You’ll only need about 3″ of oil to fry these babies up.
Although the original recipe I consulted recommended you cut the bamboo skewers in half, I left mine long (8″), the better to have the inevitable corn dog sword fight. Nah, really I was just too lazy to cut them in half and wouldn’t have minded watching a good corn dog battle should one have sprung up (it didn’t :( ). The original recipe also recommended that I cut the sharp end of the skewer off so that folks wouldn’t injure themselves. I must be somewhat less thoughtful than the original author, but if someone manages to stab themselves biting into skewered food…I don’t know…maybe it was meant to be? I’ve been to a few State Fairs and don’t remember any corn dog disclaimers posted on the vendor’s booths, nor do I remember paramedics loading folks who had impaled their soft palates into ambulances. I’m glad to report that no one here damaged themselves on the evening these were served. You’ll have to decide how cautious you want to be when you serve these little devils up, but considered yourself warned and I’ll consider myself absolved! Have fun!
Mini Corn Dogs
recipe from: Hungry Girl por Vida
yield: 42 mini corn dogs
- 1/4 cup cornstarch
- 2 packages (7 links) hot dogs, cut into thirds * I used Hebrew National…YUM!*
- bamboo skewers – leave them long and pointy…Live dangerously!
- 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 2/3 cup cornmeal
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
- 1 ear of corn, grated on a box grater
- 1/4 cup grated onion
- 1 large egg, beaten
- 2 teaspoons honey
- 1 cup buttermilk
Roll hot dog pieces in a light coating of cornstarch and skewer. Set aside.
In a medium, high sided sauce pan, heat 3-4 inches of oil to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with paper towels for draining.
In a large, deep bowl, whisk together flour, cornmeal, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cayenne. In a large measuring cup, mix together corn, onion, egg, buttermilk, and honey. Add to the dry mixture and stir to combine. Dip cornstarch coated hot dogs in batter and fry in batches–4-6 pops at a time–until coating is deep, golden brown. Remove from hot oil and drain on paper towel lined pan. Enjoy warm with desired condiments.