It’s fast approaching that time of year when everyone likes to dress up as zombie cheerleaders, dunk for apples in a Bourbon-based punch and shoot rockets from our teeth.
But the less said about what goes on at the annual T&G pre-Christmas party, the better really.
So moving swiftly on, if you are planning on hosting some revelries over Halloween and Bonfire Night, here’s a couple of suitable suggestions for pimping up our famous Butchers Dogs - that stalwart hot dog beef and pork sausage that is eaten all year round.
First of all, we do get a lot of enquiries asking for the best method to cook our Butchers Dogs and we always find a quick poach in simmering water for 6-8 minutes helps to set the filling before any grilling. If you place them cold over charcoal or into a pan first, they are liable to expand too quickly and split.
Saying that, you could always spiral cut your weiner for faster cooking and decorative purposes but why ruin such a good looking sausage and forgo any chance of biting into that ‘snap’?
CREEPY & SPICY
For Halloween, it would be de rigueur to convert our Butchers Dogs into big fat fingers by carving out fingernails and simply applying plenty of ketchup once cooked. The kids will love it. For the adults though, this quick, easy and colourful ‘slaw should keep people equally happy. Don’t hold back on the Gochujang!
Ingredients - serves 6 (with plenty of ‘slaw to serve on the side)
6 Butchers Dogs
Half Savoy cabbage, sliced thinly
Half red cabbage sliced thinly
2 carrots, peeled and grated
Half red onion, sliced thinly
2 tbs sesame seeds, lightly toasted
100ml rice vinegar
1tbs light brown sugar
1tsp Dijon mustard
70 ml rapeseed oil
Pinch of salt and pepper
1 tsp sesame oil
Sriracha sauce, for dressing
Simply combine all the sliced vegetables and half of the sesame seeds in a bowl. Then mix together the dressing and pour over and combine.
Poach the Butchers Dogs for 6-8 mins in simmering water and place into hotdog buns.
Place a good amount of the ‘slaw on top, drizzle over some Sriracha sauce and then sprinkle over the remaining sesame seeds.
CRACK OUT THE CIDER
Temperatures should be dropping by November, so any excuse to get the fires going one more is always welcome. Alongside any excuse to keep warm with the liberal application of cider. So make sure you get plenty in. The application of crispy sage leaves here does lend some finesse to proceedings. But that will be quickly undone by the mustard dribbling down your chin.
Ingredients - serves 6
6 Butchers Dogs
2tbs rapeseed oil
60g unsalted butter
3 red onions, sliced
100ml dry cider
1tbs cider vinegar
Small bunch of sage leaves
American yellow mustard
Take a large pan and heat 30g of the butter over medium heat, along with the rapeseed oil. Add the onions and combine, before adding the cider vinegar to reduce. Next add the cider and bring the heat down, so that everything simmers gently. When the cider has reduced almost completely (and the onions have a jam-like consistency) take off the heat.
Next, poach the Butchers Dogs for 6-8 mins in simmering water and then finish them off on the BBQ to brown for another 6-8 minutes.
Add the remaining butter to a frying pan and quickly fry off the sage leaves until they become crisp.
To serve, add a good amount of onions to your hotdog bun and place the Butchers Dog on top. Drizzle over some American yellow mustard and add a sprinkle of the sage leaves as garnish.