Hot Diggity Dog!

Whew! That week went by in the blink of an eye. We hope you all enjoyed our adventure with Kosher cooking. We know we sure did. I imagine we’ll revisit Kosher food at some point along this adventure again. Until then, many thanks to ToriΒ for our first introduction to it. Incidentally, Tori just won the IACP People’s Choice Best Culinary Blog or Website for 2012! Congrats! It’s well-deserved.

Now before we get to our next international cooking adventure we wanted to wrap up our stateside culinary tour of Hawaii. This last dish doesn’t really have a recipe per say. We didn’t whip up any original ingredients, or make any fancy homemade sausages. Nope. We simply wanted to see how authentically we could recreate our favorite treat from Hawaii, The Puka Dog!Β 

Now being from Chicago, we know hot dogs. In fact I grew up just a few blocks away from The Best Hot Dog in America! So when we heard that we had to try Puka Dogs we were game, but skeptical. It’s a simple place, you pick your style of bread, wheat or white. Then you pick your sausage, Polish or veggie. Next you pick your Garlic Lemon Secret Sauce, mild, spicy-hot or hot-hot. And finally you pick your relish and mustard with choices including pineapple relish, mango relish and guava mustard.

The hot dog then comes served inside a roll (not a slit bun) which is filled (and I mean filled) with the various sauces. Now obviously this wasn’t the healthiest of food choices on the island, but it was vacation after all. Still, three visits in one week was probably a bit excessive. We couldn’t help ourselves though. These things were just so good!!! We knew then that we’d have to try to recreate this at home and set out to figure out how as soon as we returned home.

So we started with our Polish sausages and large white hoagie rolls.

We steamed the sausage for about 10 or 15 minutes.

Then we tried to figure out what to use for making the puka (hole). At Puka Dog they pierce the buns with what look like metal stakes. Well, since we don’t have any of those lying around we used our turkey baster. It got the job done.

After piercing the buns we wrapped them in damp paper towels and microwaved them for 30 seconds to create a steamed bun.

And lastly, again trying to keep these as authentic as we could, we added the Garlic Lemon Secret Sauce (spicy-hot) which we purchased through Puka Dog. We realize we could have tried to make our own version of the secret sauce, but we couldn’t pass up the real stuff.

We also added in some mango relish and lilikoi mustard.

Finally we stuffed the rolls with the sausage and were ready to go. I gotta say we were impressed with how they looked, pretty darn close to the real thing.

We served ours alongside some sweet potato chips. Thank you Charles for convincing me to finally get a mandoline! Holy cow is that thing fun! Thank you also to Lisa for the delicious seasoning combo for the fries.

So how did we rank our at-home version of the Puka Dog?

Well, I wouldn’t say it was as good as the real thing, but oh those sauces are just too darn tasty! I’m looking forward to trying them on some other foods as well, especially salmon. Anyway, we all thought it was a pretty decent effort for trying to recreate a restaurant favorite. 4 spoons all around.

So until next time Hawaii, mahalo! We’ll be back on Monday with a final nod to Greenland. Then it’s off to my country of choice. I’m going Africa this time! Happy Passover and Easter to all those that celebrate. And happy weekend to everyone!

55 thoughts on “Hot Diggity Dog!

  1. Courtney says:

    So behind on my comments… these look amazing!! And those sauces sound like such a fun addition. (And can you believe I hadn’t ever had a Chicago style dog until last year?!? They kinda freaked me out. Then I visited my friend there last year and she peer pressured me into it. And I LOVED it.) πŸ™‚


  2. The Orange Bee says:

    Amazing how vacation meals taste so incredible when you’re on vacation. These look great to be eaten occasionally. But, I am so glad you’re doing African recipes next as I have a friend who recently visited and brought me a selection of African spices. I’m ready to open and try them…I’ll be checking back.


  3. Aimee@clevermuffin says:

    These look delicious – four spoons all round is pretty darn impressive! Thanks also for the best hot dog in America tip. I’m going a East coast of America trip in December and I’ve now saved it in my ‘to do’ folder! πŸ™‚


  4. Norma Chang says:

    Should not be worrying about calories and the other stuff when on vacation, instead focus on the local fares and have a grand time, after all that’s what vacation supposed to be, no?
    Very creative reccreation of the puka dog.


  5. Caroline says:

    Congrats to Tori, that’s fantastic! And oh my gosh, Kristy…these hot dogs sound unbelievable! So unique. I love your steamer…I need to get one. I’m sure it would come in handy. Hope you had a wonderful Easter with the family, and I can’t wait to see the Greenland post today! x


    • Kristy says:

      The steamer is fabulous! Great for edamame too. πŸ™‚ We had a great weekend (incidentally these sauces are fantastic in deviled eggs!), I hope you and your family did as well.


  6. ceciliag says:

    American food! nice. i was thinking the other day about when you guys get to New Zealand food, you will have to dig a hole in the garden and make a hangi! But first we have to gather the big rocks. Hmm. Do you have a lawn? can we dig it up?..Cooking the old maori way.. and it is still done all the time at home.. c


    • Kristy says:

      LOL! I think my neighbors might take issue with that. We did do New Zealand very early in our blogging adventures and I remember reading about the hangi! I forget which recipe it was for, but we got a big kick out of it! πŸ™‚


      • ceciliag says:

        everything, there is no recipe, you just put in a sack of spuds, about 10 whole cabbages in metal baskets, two or three whole chickens and a chopped up mutton, cover it, bury it in the heat for 24 hours and then dig it up.. perfick!! c


  7. Geni - Sweet and Crumby says:

    I’ve never seen a roll carved out for a hotdog, but I LOVE this idea. Most buns are a disappointment. The sauces sound to die for.
    It’s so fun to recreate vacation favorites…maybe it’s time I whip up another Haupia pie…Oh how I miss Kauai. Take care. Hope your family had a wonderful Easter Kristy.


    • Kristy says:

      The sauce is incredible! As I’ve mentioned in a few other comments – fantastic with deviled eggs. πŸ™‚ And did I ever tell you that Mike and the kids got a slice of your Haupia pie in Kauai. They rather enjoyed it. πŸ™‚


  8. rsmacaalay says:

    Thats something new to me, I mean your method of steaming those buns. Thats the first time I saw it, definitely it would save a lot of time compared to traditional steaming which I do.


    • Kristy says:

      I was like a little kid – so giddy – with my mandoline the other day. The kids even got into watching me. My excitement must have been contagious. LOL. πŸ˜‰


  9. Kristy says:

    Oh totally! We’ve made so many batches of the granola now and every time I eat it I’m transported back. Even if only for a few minutes. I hope your trip was just as wonderful!


  10. profiterolesandponytails says:

    Don’t you just love recreating recipes from your vacation? Even if they are not identical to the original, they just take you back to those wonderful moments and make you smile. Great idea to use the turkey baster — very original! I enjoyed your post!


  11. Purely.. Kay says:

    Let me just say.. I LOVE THIS. I can’t even begin to show how much I love this recipe. And I can’t wait to make it. With that settled, let me just tell you your post title really made me smile. It’s something my grandmother used to say :). Happy Easter you guys πŸ™‚


  12. Charles says:

    These look so much better than French-style hotdogs. They make them in a similar way, with the metal spikey thing but they use baguette instead of a nice soft bun-style roll. Not only is it impossible to fit the diameter of the baguette in your mouth but it’s way to crunchy and tough as well.

    Love the idea of the sauces as well – sounds like a wonderful meal and Happy Easter to you and your family Kristy πŸ™‚


  13. hotlyspiced says:

    Even though these aren’t the healthiest meal you can find, they deserve a mention because they are so tasty and we all deserve a treat from time to time, especially when on vacation! I think you did a great job of recreating your Hawaiian meal. Good use of the turkey baster too! Happy Easter! xx


  14. Three Well Beings says:

    How great is this! I look forward to sharing this post with my step-son who lives on Oahu…I’d love to see if he’s familiar, and he’s a good cook who would probably think this is fun! I love a good veggie dog…I really do prefer them, but I do look for creativity and trying something new! These would be a hit with my family. The turkey baster was genius!! Debra


    • Kristy says:

      I believe there’s one in Waikiki as well. They only have two locations, but oh my are they delicious!!!! We tried veggie dogs with Mr. N back when he was two. I set his plate in front of him and he said, “This isn’t a hot dog.” I assured him that it was and he took a bite. He looked at me and said, “This tastes like cheese. It’s not a hot dog.” I just had to laugh and then made him a real hot do. πŸ˜‰


  15. Dawn says:

    This reminds me of eating hot dogs in France – they serve them in a baguette the same way. The first time I had one was when I was living with a host family, and she packed me a picnic lunch for an excersion we were taking at school – it was hilarious, but delicious!!!! Nice job!!


  16. Just A Smidgen says:

    I can always expect to find something really innovative here.. I love this whole idea and have never had a Puka dog and would love to try. Until I get over there.. this looks like the next best thing! xo


  17. sallybr says:

    Very creative the use of the turkey baster and the steaming in the microwave – never considered that!

    I bet they were mighty tasty!

    You know, in Sao Paulo, where I grew up, around the university you have dozens of little stands (on carts) selling hot dogs. They are incredible – the amount of stuff you can add to the hot dog is mind blowing, including – ready for this? – mashed potatoes!

    it is a treat. One of those babies and you are set from lunch to breakfast next day!



    • Kristy says:

      I thought about properly steaming the buns, but this was a quick and easy meal after all – the microwave seemed fitting. πŸ˜‰ Now, mashed potatoes?! Wow! Although the place nearby where I grew up serves the fries on top. And they are really good fries; although I usually set them to the side and eat them after the dog.


  18. Kelly says:

    I love steamed buns!!! reminds me of my favourite order at the old Montreal Forum: “Deux hot dogs steamΓ©e all dressed” (haha, one of my favourite things about Quebec is the constant intermingling of French/English as though it was a legitimate language in itself ;-)). That is one good looking hot dog and those sweet potato fries… yum! Charles got me to buy a mandoline too. Africa? Can’t wait!


  19. Eva Taylor says:

    I just have one question, Kristy: who’s having two?
    I love that the buns are pieced and not slit, way better sauce containment! In MontrΓ©al they call these steamies!
    I don’t think a week goes by that I don’t use my mandolin at least five times!


    • Kristy says:

      Steamies! I like that. πŸ™‚ I actually made two for Mike, but he ended up with just one, so it was nice to have leftovers for the kids’ lunch the next day. And the mandoline is just too much fun!


  20. ChgoJohn says:

    Yes, they may not be the healthiest of foods but a life without hot dogs is hardly worth living. And if I vacationed where these beauties were readily available, I would have had them more than 3 times that week, no doubt about it. As it is, it sounds like you came pretty close and you should be glad about that.

    I hope the Easter Bunny brings extra goodies to your Sous Chefs. They worked extra hard this year and deserve it.


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