Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Grilled versus Steamed

We went to the fabulous Maine Diner today. Set on Route 1 in Wells, I can honestly say it is the best diner I have ever eaten at. I challenge any diner, any where, to take on the Maine Diner for fresh, delicious true diner food.

And they have their famous lobster pie.

The kids have, willingly, waited up to an hour at times to eat in the Maine Diner. Over the years, we have collected tee shirts, baseball hats and more kids cups than can be counted.

Today, Zachary got a meal with mac and cheese, cole slaw and a huge hot dog. The dog was grilled, as all dogs should be.

It tastes like it's steamed, he said approvingly. I like it.

It's grilled, I pointed out.

Yeah, I know but I only like steamed hot dogs.

You're eating a grilled one.

But it tastes steamed.

I rolled my eyes. I do not understand where they get the love of steamed dogs. When they were little, I took the Julia Child approach- cut the dog in half, and fry, with a heavy lid on it, flipping once to be sure it's nice and crispy on the outside. Put on a grilled bun and ... that's a hot dog.

Yes, Julia Child did in fact talk about how to cook a hot dog.

And if the weather is nice enough? Well, on the grill it goes, until it's got some serious black lines on it. Mmmm.

My kids like Hebrew Nationals- spicy, good texture- or Ball Park's- excellent chew and more "normal" flavor.

They like them steamed.

Except today. Yes, I need to be right about this. It was a Pearl hot dog, it was bunless, and it was grilled. Yes, I am precise about food. I don't like it when people salt food before they taste it- except my sister in law Cheri who uses so much salt there is no food in the world that is salty enough for her. I don't like it when people say they don't like something they have never tried.

And a hot dog should be grilled.

Delicious, Zachary said.

Tomorrow, I am going to have a battle of the dog. We have, on different occasions, had blind taste tests. Root Beer- we found A&W to be the best and surprisingly a store brand to be second best and the most expensive IBC? last place. Peanut butter- Jiff won and even Walter who insists Skippy is the best picked Jiff.

It's a fun way to learn about packaging, marketing, and what you really like about a food.

After years of steaming hot dogs against my will, I'm throwing down the gauntlet.

Who knows, maybe I'll pick a steamed dog.

And I'll say, hmmm, tastes grilled.

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Blogger Sue J said...

Skippy is way better. Sorry.

3:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I love that there are blind taste-tests! I used to do this with my mom all the time! She swore the green colored ketchup tasted different than regular red, so we blindfolded her and put it to the test! She picked the green one and said, "That one. That one tastes normal." SO funny!


3:40 PM  
Blogger Sara said...

you, sue, need to do a taste test.

walter was wrong. and so are you.....

3:54 PM  
Blogger Dawg said...

Grilled everything is better, including rice.

4:09 PM  
Blogger Casey said...

Oh my gosh Sara, do u remember that little unit we had as kids? You would stick the hot dog between the two metal prongs and then plug it in.

If I remember correctly we loved those hot dogs! Haven't thought of that in years.

And you forgot to give NY its props with best hot dog of all time!
The White Hot!!!

Love you:)

5:26 PM  
Blogger John Bisceglia said...

Sara, somehow reading about your experiences with "weiners" (roll eyes now) and hearing about Angie Zapata's murderer getting life in prison has MADE MY DAY.

5:53 PM  
Blogger Sue J said...

I don't need no stinkin' taste test.

But, I could use some lobster pie ....

6:55 PM  
Blogger Monty said...

Found this on daily kos.
Hope things are going well on the Hot Dog front

8:09 PM  
Blogger Monty said...


Eighteen year old transgender woman Angie Zapata (born Justin) was murdered because of her transgender status last year in Greeley, Colorado on July 17. This afternoon, her confessed murderer, Allen Andrade, was convicted after two hours of jury deliberations, and sentenced to life in prison without parole an hour later, for this first degree murder, and was also convicted of a hate crime count and property crimes involving thefts made after the murder. The death penalty was not sought by prosecutors in the case.

This same city elected one of Colorado's most fervantly anti-gay Republican state legislators, Scott Renfroe, who earlier this year said gays deserved death in accordance with the bible in a debate on same sex couple rights, in a legislative debate.

8:09 PM  
Blogger Sara said...

I love that the bastard got convicted in zapata's murder.

gay panic defense , rest in peace.

cathy, I DO remember the wienie thing. very odd. like an asparagus steamer. just ... strange.

I remember mom would take hot dogs, split them, stuff them with american cheese then wrap them in bacon- and broil them.

now THAT was something.

10:02 PM  
Blogger Sara said...

and sue, no lobster pie until you admit jiff is better than skippy. will withhold address.

10:02 PM  
Blogger Courtney said...

how about fried hot dogs? a place near my parents' does this. and, well.. it's good.

but you had better know your order when you get there. the guy is the hot dog nazi and rainman all in one. you could order 15 hot dogs, 3 shakes, 2 cheese burgers and onion rings, and as you finish giving the order, the guy will give you the total.

8:30 AM  
Anonymous donald said...

that them over to flo's for a real hot dog lunch! don't forget to order them with flo's special sauce!

8:47 AM  
Blogger Rev. Bob said...

OMG! Howard Johnsons' hot dogs, split and grilled inside down, served on a bun that was like Texas toast, lightly buttered and grilled.

I'm now obsessing on buns.

10:00 AM  
Blogger Sara said...

we love flo's donald. and mayo and sauce is the only way to go.

that's a whole different animal.

10:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

this post makes me chuckle!

10:57 AM  
Blogger Sue J said...

I'm going to name my next pet "Skippy"

1:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nathan's skin on dogs are WAY better than Hebrew National! You should try them in your next blind taste test.

3:39 PM  
Anonymous Laura said...

grilled hot dogs ROCK!

Peter Pan Peanut Butter is a favorite in our house...

and reading about lobster pie just made me drool!

4:06 PM  
Blogger Sara said...

peter pan is better than skippy.

4:31 PM  
Blogger Sue J said...


6:13 PM  
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Blogger Sara said...


8:56 AM  
Blogger Sue J said...

Well now you're just being ridiculous.

10:49 AM  
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