Hot Dogs with Fake Sauerkraut Relish

March  9, 2014
3 Ratings
Photo by James Ransom
  • Serves 6
Author Notes

I have always found hot dogs and mustard to be a somewhat incomplete story. Ditto with hot dogs and sauerkraut. There we go -- I said it, and will probably burn on a culinary cross for the blasphemy. I like to complete my hot dogs with this relish -- not quite mustard, not quite chutney, not quite anything, just a bunch of plain old onions pretending to be sauerkraut in an attempt to connect the dots. If you happen to like it, please take me off the cross -- it’s mighty uncomfortable. —QueenSashy

Test Kitchen Notes

WHO: QueenSashy is a longtime Food52er with killer recipes up her sleeve.
WHAT: A hot dog gone to condiment heaven.
HOW: Make a “fake sauerkraut,” cook hot dogs, eat together. Open a beer.
WHY WE LOVE IT: QueenSashy’s fake sauerkraut is genius: It combines the bite of vinegar and mustard with the sweetness of slow-cooked onions. In other words, as far as condiments go, it leaves us wanting for nothing. Next time, we’re making extra: for burgers, sandwiches, and of course, for hot dogs round two. —The Editors

What You'll Need
  • For the fake sauerkraut relish:
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 10 ounces red onions, thinly sliced
  • 10 ounces yellow onions, thinly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons turbinado or demerara sugar
  • 1 tablespoon yellow mustard
  • 1 tablespoon whole grain mustard
  • 1/3 cup aged balsamic vinegar
  • Salt and freshly ground white pepper
  • For the hot dogs:
  • 6 whole-wheat hot dog buns
  • 6 hot dogs
  • Fake sauerkraut relish (see above)
  • Ketchup (optional)
  1. For the fake sauerkraut relish:
  2. In a medium skillet over medium heat, combine the oil and onions. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are softened, about 15 minutes. Add the sugar, mustards, a pinch of salt, and mix to combine.
  3. Add the vinegar. When the mixture is about to bubble, reduce the heat to medium-low, and cook for about 35 minutes, until the vinegar has reduced completely and the acidic fumes have evaporated. (Do not attempt to expedite cooking by increasing the heat -- you want the mixture gently steaming, otherwise the flavors will be off. If needed, add a tiny bit of water from time to time to prevent onions from drying.)
  4. Remove the relish from the heat, if needed adjust the salt, season with white pepper, and let it cool at room temperature before serving.
  1. For the hot dogs:
  2. Cook or grill your hot dog. This one is up to you.
  3. Open the buns on a work surface. Spoon the relish on the bottom half of the bun, top with the hot dog, top with ketchup if desired. Close the bun carefully. Have fun.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Jim Maslanka
    Jim Maslanka
  • zoemetro uk
    zoemetro uk
  • ChefJune
  • Meatballs&Milkshakes
  • Panfusine
Aleksandra aka QueenSashy is a scientist by day, and cook, photographer and doodler by night. When she is not writing code and formulas, she blogs about food, life and everything in between on her blog, Three Little Halves. Three Little Halves was nominated for 2015 James Beard Awards and the finalist for 2014 Saveur Best Food Blog Awards. Aleksandra lives in New York City with her other two halves, Miss Pain and Dr. V.

16 Reviews

Jim M. June 4, 2014
In Chicago, ketchup on a hot dog is verboten. Stick with the sauerkraut relish with the yellow and whole grain mustard.
RSherr April 26, 2014
I'd be interested in the kind of Balsamic vinegar you use. When I add mine everything turns a dark brown and stays that way. Doesn't look at all like the photo you show.
QueenSashy April 27, 2014
I usually use entry level balsamic vinegars for this dish, the ones you would use to make balsamic reduction for example, and stay away from the expensive ones. Could it be the reason? I made the dish in the photo with “De Nigris Bio Balsamic Vinegar of Modena”, I also used “Trader Joe’s Gold Quality Balsamic Vinegar of Modena” in the past. Red onions also contribute quite a bit to the purplish-red hues in the dish. That could be another thing…
zoemetro U. March 31, 2014
I love mustard on most everything--Dijon, English, whole grain--mmmmm...mustard. However, as of late, I have become extremely fond of yellow mustard in its big-yellow-"sqeezy" bottle. I love your idea of using it with carmelized onions!! I made this last night to accompany grilled ribeye and baked potato. It was a hit will all of our guests. Thank you!!!!
QueenSashy March 31, 2014
Grilled ribeye -- it must have been delicious! I am so glad the relish worked out, and thank you very much for letting me know.
ChefJune March 29, 2014
I have to tell you, QueenSashy -- If it weren't my recipe against yours, I'd be voting for this. I love the idea of the fake sauerkraut. I'll be making it soon.
QueenSashy March 29, 2014
Ha, ha, ha! Thank you ChefJune! Your mussels too are on my must make list.
Meatballs&Milkshakes March 28, 2014
Congrats! Can't wait for the warm weather here to make these on the grill!
QueenSashy March 28, 2014
Thanks - grilled are totally my favorite too!
Panfusine March 27, 2014
Congratulations on the Finalist pick QueenSashy, The relish sounds divine!
QueenSashy March 28, 2014
Panfusine, thank you...
Pegeen March 27, 2014
QueenSashy, can't wait to make! Love onions, love mustard. Thank you.
QueenSashy March 27, 2014
Hi Pegeen, thanks a lot! Cheers.
Kukla March 27, 2014
Congrats QueenSashy on being one of the Finalists!
Good Luck!
QueenSashy March 27, 2014
Thank you Kukla!
olive March 10, 2014
that sounds AWESOME + I love your photo too!