French Poodles

June  6, 2011
Author Notes

A few years back I was making a lot of French garlic sausage because I had never had it and it just seemed like an interesting thing to do. Well, as would be expected I wound up with a lot of it in my quest for finding a great recipe. One night my wife said she wanted corn dogs. We love our corn dogs but had no hot dogs. Out came the garlic sausage and we dubbed them French Poodles. The garlic sausage has long disappeared and what we switched to is ring bologna and, to tell you the truth, we like it so much better. What is great about these is the meat to crust ratio is much better than the traditional corn dog. I like to serve them with Sauce American, mustard and waffle fries, seems wrong to call them garfrettes in this instance. Seems I use the Ad Hoc seasoned flour for about everything these days. An approximation would be 1 cup of flour, 1 teaspoon paprika, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon cayanne, salt and fresh ground black pepper. - thirschfeld —thirschfeld

Test Kitchen Notes

Thirschfeld has swept away the years I spent (sometimes) patiently explaining that no, the son or the daughter could not order a corn dog for breakfast, lunch, and dinner -- they needed to choose one. Now that they're (sometimes) adults, and we communicate and spend time together so differently, I’ve wished I’d been a little less rigid when they were younger. Then along comes thirschfeld. He MAKES corndogs, rechristened French Poodles, for his children. Not only that, he makes the sausage, too. He is serious Father of the Year material. I found myself a little short on homemade French garlic sausage, so I used Nathan's hot dogs instead. The test was worth the price of admission for the seasoned flour, a new staple in my kitchen. These little treasures are seriously addicting. I dipped them in a mixture of Sauce Américaine, mustard, and mayo (hey, what do you expect of someone from California?), and could not leave them alone. It's a good thing I got some photos taken before we started sampling. French Poodles are a blast to make. If you don't have a child, borrow one. It would definitely increase the fun factor.
P.S. The batter coated way more than 12 mini dogs, and that's a very good thing.
- boulangere

  • Makes 12 poodles
  • 12 ounces ring bologna, there are lots of options for good quality ring bologna
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup cornmeal, medium grind will give you some grit and find grind will give you cake, use what you like
  • 1/2 cup seasoned flour
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 egg
  • peanut oil for frying
In This Recipe
  1. Cut the ring bologna into 1/2 inch rounds. Peel the synthetic casing off if it has one or just make sure the casing is tearable with your teeth. You should have twelve. Put a wooden toothpick or skewer into the bologna. Dredge the poodles in a half cup of the seasoned flour and let them sit there while you make the batter.
  2. Place a 3 1/2 quart heavy bottomed pot over medium heat and pour in emough oil to come no further that 1/3 of the way up the side of the pot. Start making your batter by combining the seasoned flour with the flour, cornmeal, sugar, salt and baking powder and soda.
  3. Add the egg and milk and whisk to combine.
  4. Using a deep fry thermometer get the oil to 350 degrees F. Stir the batter to get rid of excess bubbles. If you don't remove the bubbles it will be difficult to dip your poodles.
  5. Dip the poodles and gently and carefully place them into the hot oil. Cook them until hot, golden brown and delicious. Serve with Sauce American and mustard. Potato chips or fries are excellent choices too.
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Father, husband, writer, photojournalist and not always in that order.