My mother's storied Jeannie's Weenie Supremies guaranteed the hot dog a permanent place of honor in our fridge when I was growing up. The Supremies consisted of a hot dog, split and stuffed with cheddar cheese and wrapped in bacon. My father also had an unnatural love affair with a simple boiled dog wrapped in white bread.
It therefore seems appropriate that my first piece for Clean Plate Charlie is a review of some of the hot dogs (call them tube steaks and risk an immediate and well-deserved bitch-slapping) you can pick up at the local supermarket. I grabbed packs of Nathan's Bigger Than the Bun, Boar's Head Beef, Applegate Farms Stadium Organic Uncured Beef, and the classic Oscar Mayer Wiener (which is the only acceptable use of the word "wiener" when referencing a hot dog), all of which can be purchased at my local Publix, and prepared boiled and grilled (outdoors) versions of each.
I tasted them with and without mustard; ketchup on a hot dog is a disgusting crime and acceptable only for children and animals. In a lame attempt at scientific impartiality, I tasted the boiled versions while blindfolded, with my wife feeding me random meaty bits. For the rest of the tests, I fed myself, because I'm all grown up.