Featuring Dining, Wines, Recipes, and Specialty Shopping in Knoxville and
Mustard vs. Ketchup
What a weird topic - let's first talk brands. Since there is really only one brand of ketchup in my opinion, “Heinz” I guess that is the end of that subject. Hunt’s and any of those generic store brands need not apply for this position. The only thing I have a problem with Heinz ketchup are when the bottles are the same color as the product, so you don’t know if the bottle is empty until you pick it up. In restaurants that have these colored containers, it may seem to management they are on top of the game but it "pee's me off" to have to wait for a server to get a fresh bottle. In my humble opinion, ketchup is the condiment of choice that should be reserved for fried potato dishes, like French fries, steak fries, hash browns, breakfast potatoes etc. The other food group that ketchup has a natural bond with is hamburgers.
Now for mustard..Where the heck do you start? Personally I like Guldens’ for a spicy type, or for yellow mustard try Plochmans and French’s. In the mustard zoo there are also Dijons Polish, German, and all the American boutique mustards. Did I forget anything? Oh yeah ......Chinese mustards. Spend the extra shekels and get some decent mustard. Here’s a short list of my favorites: Guldens, Plochmans, Kosciusko, Grey Poupon, Boars Head brand, Jack Daniel’s, French’s.
In any other city except for KnoxVegas, when you are talking about hotdogs there is no debate over whether ketchup should be on a hotdog. You first need to understand hotdogs. Hotdogs are not designed to be boiled or steamed. Also, if a hotdog is prepackaged with cheese inside of it..... Is that a hotdog? If they are prepackaged with a bun for ease of cooking in a mikeywave – they are not hotdogs!!!! Are you getting my drift? According to my experience, and also the recommendation of Food TV, Nathan’s - Sabrett and Hebrew National brands are considered the stars of the bun! Also, hotdogs need to be grilled on a griddle, a grill or cooked in a deep fryer to ensure the skin snaps when you bite into it. Grilling adds grill marks, which are part of the hotdog eating experience – it also adds to the look before it is dressed. My dad used to add tiny cross slits on the ends and in rows across the hotdog. These slits get a darker color when grilled and make the hotdog look like the hood of a custom 57 Chevy. If you have ever been to a real hotdog stand, usually they are only open for the summer season; you will know what I mean.
Here’s the rub - The only ketchup worthy of a tomato award is Heinz. Even though it is a fantastic tasting condiment IT HAS NO PLACE ON A HOT DOG!!! A proper hotdog should be dressed with MUSTARD ! Along with the mustard, try green relish, pepper relish, hot dog relish, sauerkraut, chili, cheese (not in the dog), chow chow, and onions. Or if you have wild hair, look up a Chicago "dog" on the internet and see what celery salt adds along with other condiments.
And that is my take on dogs... hot that is......