I first saw this image months ago on Pinterest, and haven’t been able to get it out of my mind since. The combination of skewered hot dogs and cauliflower screams retro recipe awesomeness. It took a bit of digging, but I discovered the image came from a 1975 Reynolds Wrap cookbook called Carefree Cooking with Aluminum Foil. A bit of poking around on eBay and the volume was soon in my kitchen.
I know what you’re thinking. The very look of it is repulsive. But here’s the thing – it’s just a hot dog, rolled in ketchup, covered with crushed cornflakes, and baked till crispy. The cauliflower is just a creative way to serve all these hot dogs on sticks.
And besides, just look at it. How can you resist?
One of the hardest parts of this is actually spiral scoring the hot dog. This releases some of the juices when it bakes – keeping it from bursting and making it a bit crispier. Try holding a sharp pairing knife still in one hand, while turning the hot dog in the other.
Use flat plates without the curved edges for your rolling platters. I didn’t, because I wanted it to photograph well, and it made evenly coating the sides challenging.
Put the cornflakes into a ziploc bag to crush them, and really give them a good crushing. You can see in the original picture the crumbs are very fine. Were I to make this recipe again – and who knows, it could happen – I’d crush mine finer.
Falling in line with last week’s retro recipe, there is something so perfectly retro about this recipe. It has the look, the ingredients are prepackaged, and the prep and cooking are quick and easy.
And they’re not bad. Really. The ketchup gives the hot dogs a bit of tang and smokiness, while the cornflakes give it a nice crunch that proves to be a satisfying combination of textures. Kids would love to make and eat these, and it can also make a fun centerpiece for an outdoor picnic or causal dinner party.
1 lb (8 to 10) frankfurters
1/2 cup catsup
1/2 cup cornflake crumbs
Score surface of frankfurters lightly, spiraling from end to end. Insert wood skewers in one end. Roll each frankfurter in catsup, then in cornflake crumbs. Place Reynolds Wrap in a shallow pan. Place frankfurters in pan; do not crowd. Bake in 350F oven for about 15 minutes. Serve with additional catsup or with mustard, if desired.