Bacon Wrapped Hot Dog Pops

 

I have always loved this time of year. The cold weather, the holidays, and something special that I will always hold near and dear to my heart: the Volusia County fair! There is something about the fair that gets me every time. I think it all comes back to the smell….yes the wonderful smell of fried fair food. I have given up most of the rides years ago, but the smells keep me coming back year after year for a night of shameful snacking. I usually always leave with a stomachache from the binge eating, but it’s a traditional that has become an annual happy outing. This year, I was unable to make it to the fair due to my work schedule. Instead of missing out on the food…I decided to create something that was a much more healthy but none-the-less fair worthy treat to enjoy throughout the week.

I always get a sampling of many different treats, but the fair food I never skip is the corn dog. It’ s kind of my go-to snack. This is probably one of the worst foods I could consume, not just because it is deep fried, but also because it contains a hot dog that is loaded with nitrates and who knows what else! Rodents come to mind… Anyhoo, I searched for quite a while before I found an acceptable hot dog for my healthy version of the corn dog. I chose to use hot dogs from the company Applegate.  Not all of their meats are organic, but these specific hot dogs are organic, nitrate free and grass fed! YAY!! No added soy feed or fillers. This is probably the least processed hot dog you could find right now. Click on the picture above to search where you can find these in your area.

This recipe can also be done meatless using vegan approved hot dogs and bacon if you don’t want to use actual meat. I suggest choosing an organic variety that has as few ingredients as possible. The less processed the better!

 

What you’ll need:

3 packs applegate organic hot dogs

2 packs nitrate free bacon

2 packs wooden dowel rods (found in the craft section of Walmart)

1/2 cup honey

1/3 cup water

 

Kitchen Equipment:

pencil sharpeners

2 baking sheets liked with foil or parchment paper

small saucepan

basting brush or spoon

 

Directions:

Heat oven to 350°. The first step involves prepping the dowel rods. You can skip this step but they may not push into the hot dogs too easily without it.

 

Sharpen one end of the dowel rod until it has a slight point to it. It doesn’t have to be super pointy, but it needs to have enough of a shape so it glides into the hot dog without a lot of resistance.

Slide the dowel rod about 3/4 of the way into the hot dog.

Trim the dowel rod down to a shorter length if desired using a wire cutter. Or you can keep them long for a fun fair effect. Just make sure they will fit on your baking sheet.

Take one piece of bacon and wrap it around the hot dog, starting at the top and twisting it down to the bottom.

Place all the hot dog pops on the baking sheet and make the sauce to coat them.

To make sauce, place 1/2 cup honey and 1/3 cup water into a pan and bring to a boil. Take pan off of heat and set aside to cool for 5 minutes.

The next step can be done in two ways.,#1) Baste the hot dog pops with honey sauce, coating completely or…

#2) hold hot dog over the sauce and coat using a spoon.

Place in oven and bake for 25-30 minutes or until bacon is cooked through.

When hot dog pops are done, grab some honey mustard and enjoy!

I make lots of these so I can snack on them for awhile. Once they are completely cool, wrap each pop in saran wrap, put in a freezer bag and place in freezer. Pull them out one at a time for a yummy healthy carnival inspired treat!

They are great with ketchup, mustard, honey mustard, or plain. Delish!!!

What is your favorite fair food?

Xoxo,

Tiffany

 

Chilly Chili

 

I am so excited! Today is the first fall day in Florida where we have had really cool weather (in the 40′s!). I know, that is probably mild to some of you, but when 40 degree weather rolls around here, we all pull out our winter jackets. This is, sadly, usually a combo of a long sleeve shirt and a hoodie layered together lol.

For being born and raised in the sunshine state, I really enjoy my cold days. I don’t know if it’s because we get so few of them, or the nostalgia of  happy wintery memories that come flooding back, but they always makes me smile! Whether you love or hate the cold weather, almost everyone agrees: chilly days make warm foods taste amazing! A piping hot dish just doesn’t taste the same on a sweltering humid day.

I really like chili when it gets chilly. Because our winter days here are so sporadic, you kind of have to plan in advance with weather forecasts if you want to make a fresh warm bowl on a cold day. So, in an attempt to get a one-up on the weather, I started making large batches and freezing them in individual baggies. I can pull out a bag to snack on without going through the process of starting from scratch, and possibly missing my winter weather opportunity window. I can have my chili anytime it gets chilly…no extra fuss.

Side note: This chili is amazing with Chocolate-Covered Katie’s Totally Addictive Cornbread. Delish!

What you’ll need:

6 strips nitrate and hormone free bacon

1 large sweet onion; roughly chopped

4 cloves garlic

1 organic steak

1 lb organic ground beef or sausage

1 cup organic red wine

1 cup corn

2 cans kidney beans, drained and rinsed (omit for paleo)

1 cup tomato sauce

3 tbsp chili powder

2 tsp cumin

1 tsp coriander

2 tsp salt

1 tsp cacao powder

1/2 – 1 tsp red pepper flakes (or more if you like it hot)

1/2-1 cup beef broth or water if chili is too dry after ingredients are added (optional)

 

Kitchen equipment:

Large deep skillet (or electric skillet)

cutting board

sandwich bags

freezer bags

 

Directions:

Fry bacon until brown and crispy.

 

When bacon is done, chop roughly into pieces and set aside.

While bacon is cooking, chop onion and set aside.

Mince garlic and place in bowl with onion.

Slice steak into 2 inch strips. Slice strip in half again and dice into 1 inch cubes.

When bacon is done, add onion and garlic to the same pan. Do not remove bacon grease.

Saute for 5-7 minutes or until onions start to become translucent and soft.

Add ground beef and steak.

Cook for another 5 minutes or until meat is about 90 percent cooked through.

Add remaining ingredients (including bacon) and stir well.

 

Simmer for 30 min.

Pour into a crock and enjoy!

Don’t forget your spoon :)

To store for later (or a good chilly day), place 1 cup portions into sandwich bags and place all bags into one large freezer bag. Pull one out and thaw using the defrost setting on the microwave. You can heat it to the desired temperature at that point or stick it in your lunchbox to enjoy later.

Ok cold weather…keep giving me a reason to heat up my Chilly Chili :)

Xoxo,

Tiffany

 

 



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