Some of my earliest memories are cookouts at my granddad and grandma’s house. These were my dad’s folks and they lived in a small Texas town of about 350 people. Back in those days, they still burned their trash in a barrel out back and planted a full garden every year. They had four children and eleven grandchildren and there were always a lot of people packed in their tiny house. If it was decent weather, the women would be inside talking and preparing side dishes and the men would be out gathered around the grill giving each other a hard time. All of my cousins were older so, as the littlest of the little ones, my sister and I would run in between the house and the grill trying to get someone to pay attention to us.
My grandfather, who never talked much but was beloved by us for many reasons (the giant tin of hard candy he kept behind his recliner was one), would preside over a grill full of hot dogs and hamburgers and sometimes steaks. I was a bit older before I realized that all hot dogs did not come with a crispy, black crust. (He was overly fond of the char, Grandpa.) The only condiments that I remember were yellow mustard, ketchup and maybe some relish. Simple. Straight-forward. American.
Grandpa would probably not know what to think of teriyaki dogs wrapped in bacon and topped with pineapple and jalepenos. But he sure would have appreciated the nice flames I had going when the bacon fat hit the charcoal. While it took some quick tong-work to avoid full-on char, I was reminded that a little burnt can be mighty tasty.
- 4 all-beef hot dogs
- 4 slices bacon (I only needed two)
- 2 slices thick pineapple (I sliced and grilled up a whole pineapple — leftovers are yum on some salad)
- 1/4 cup teriyaki sauce
- 4 hot dog buns, slightly toasted
- pickled jalepenos
Preheat a grill or grill pan over medium heat. (I started with my Egg set up for indirect heat and later switched to direct.) Tightly wrap each hot dog with bacon. (I stuck half a toothpick in each end to keep my bacon in place.) They should look something like this:
Place the hot dogs and sliced pineapple on the grill and cook, turning and basting both with teriyaki sauce.
Keep lid open to minimize flare ups if using direct heat. After about 10 minutes, your dogs should have some crispy bacon and your pineapple should look like so:
Chop the pineapple into bite-size pieces and discard the tough core. Place the dogs in the toasted buns and top with pineapple, jalepenos, and another swipe of teriyaki sauce.
You won’t feel guilty serving these oh-so-sophisticated dogs for dinner. They look like a lot more trouble than they are. Just watch out for those flames.