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How to Make Corn Dogs

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It's always more fun to DIY. Every week, we'll spare you a trip to the grocery store and show you how to make small batches of great foods at home. 

Today: What's better than a hotdog? A hotdog on a stick that's been deep-fried in a cornmeal batter, that's what. Molly Yeh from my name is yeh is showing us how to make boring wieners into state fair stars. 

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Correct me if I’m wrong, but the corn dog needs no introduction. He’s classic, he’s fun, he’s always excited. There’s nothing to be taken too seriously here, folks, and luckily the process of making your own isn’t too serious either. It’s simply a matter of whipping up a basic cornmeal batter, using it to coat your wiener of choice, and then deep-frying it. The oil’s gotta be deep -- really deep. And listen, I’ve never been the hugest fan of getting a deep fry setup going because things tend to get kind of sloppy, so when I do, you know it’s worth it

This is a recipe for a basic and delicious county fair corn dog. If you’re looking to class things up a bit, I’d recommend adding some fun spices to the batter (perhaps paprika or cayenne?), using a fancy sausage, or having a team of bougie condiments on hand to dress your dogs. 

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More: 10 recipes to help you recreate your favorite state fair foods at home.

Here are a few tips:

  • This batter can be made the night before and stored, covered, in the fridge. 
  • Placing the batter in a tall glass or jar is the easiest way to get your hot dogs completely coated.
  • If the tip of the sausage doesn’t get covered all the way when you dip it into the batter, you can use a spoon or small spatula to get it up onto the tip. Make sure the whole thing is covered in batter before frying.
  • If for any reason the batter is having trouble sticking to your wieners, coat them first in a dusting of flour and then dip them in the batter. It won’t stick at first, but wiggle it around a bit and then the batter will stick really well.
  • If you don’t have enough oil to fully submerge the hot dogs (perhaps you ran out, perhaps you don’t want to wait that long for that much oil to heat up, perhaps your wiener is of a magnum size), either cut them in half to make mini corn dogs, or lower them into the oil by their stick, rotate them for a few seconds so that the oil just begins to cook the outside, and then use tongs to carefully remove the stick, letting the corn dog flow freely in the oil.
  • Leftovers can be frozen and then reheated in the microwave.
  • Might I suggest the corn dog salad

Corn Dogs

Makes 8

2 to 4 quarts vegetable or canola oil, for frying
3/4 cup yellow cornmeal
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
Black pepper, to taste
1 large egg
1 cup buttermilk
Hot sauce, optional
8 pre-cooked hot dogs or sausages 

Fill a deep pot with oil enough oil to fully submerge your corn dogs and heat it to 360° F.

While the oil is heating, combine all of the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Whisk in the egg, buttermilk, and hot sauce, if using.

  

Stick chopsticks or wooden skewers into your wieners. Once the oil is heated, pour the batter into a tall glass or jar and dip the wieners into the batter, covering them fully. 

Fry them until golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes, then transfer to a paper towel to drain.

Let cool slightly and enjoy! 

See the full recipe (and save and print it) here.

Photos by Molly Yeh

Tags: small batch, how-to & DIY, corn dogs, state fair, fried food, fried, hot dog, sausage