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Your Fourth Of July Menu

Don’t be boring this Independence Day and make the same old thing you make every year… Give your Fourth of July celebration a little pizazz with a twist on the traditional menu items. 

Instead of a plain, grilled hot dog, try one of these recipes below:

Simple Homemade Pretzel Dogs

MAKES 8  |  ACTIVE TIME 22 Min  |  TOTAL TIME 35 Minutes

2¼ teaspoons active dry yeast
12 ounces warmed beer (110°-120°F)
2 tablespoons honey
3¼ cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ cup baking soda
1 large egg
coarse salt (or pretzel salt)
8 hot dogs

Preheat oven to 450°F.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Set aside.

Pour beer into the bowl of a stand mixer (see cooks note if you do not have a stand mixer), sprinkle yeast over top, add honey and stir.  Allow yeast to bloom for 5-10 minutes.  Once it is nice and foamy, it is ready.

Fill an 8 quart pot with water and bring to a boil over medium high heat.  In a small bowl beat egg and 2 tablespoons water with a fork.  Set aside.  Wash a section of counter top for rolling out dough.  Do not flour it or it will be harder to roll out the dough.

Add flour and salt to mixer.  Knead for about 3 minutes until the dough comes together in one ball.  Add more flour a tablespoon at a time as needed, if bread is too sticky to come together.  Dough should be tacky when you pull it out of the mixer, not sticky.

Place dough on counter top and form dough into a ball. 

We are going to cut this ball into 8 (somewhat) even pieces.  First quarter the ball of dough.  Then cut each quarter in half.  Roll each piece into a 12” strand. 

Place end of dough strand on the end of the hot dog pinching the end together, and then wrap it around the dog until all of the dough is wrapped around the dog.  Pinch the ends so they stay together.

Carefully, add baking soda to boiling water.  USE CAUTION:  IT WILL BUBBLE UP.  Place hot dogs into boiling water about 3 at a time.  Remove with a slotted spoon after 30 seconds.  Place on parchment paper to cool and repeat until all hot dogs have been boiled.

Arrange all pretzel dogs on parchment so they are not touching.  Brush egg wash onto each one and sprinkle with coarse salt.

Bake for 11-13 minutes until the tops are browned.


COOKS NOTE:  You can mix the dough by hand if you do not have a stand mixer.  Add beer, yeast and honey to a large bowl.  Once the yeast blooms stir in the salt and the flour.  Mix with a spoon.  Turn dough out onto floured counter top and knead for 3-5 minutes until dough is no longer sticky.  Proceed with remaining instructions.

I microwaved the beer in a glass microwave safe measuring cup, 15 seconds at a time until it was 110-120 degrees.

You can substitute milk or water for the beer.

Homemade Corn Dogs and Corn Dog Muffins

Pizza Dogs

Instead of your traditional cold salads, try one of these:

Caprese Pasta Salad


potato & sausage salad

potato & sausage salad
10 baby potatoes in their skins
1/2 red onion, diced small
1/2 link of sausage, sliced
1 bunch parsley, torn
handful of chives & dill, snipped
1 lemon, juiced and zested
2 T of dill mustard (if you use dijon, try a bit less & taste)
1/4 c olive oil
1 t cider vinegar
1 t honey

1. Boil the potatoes whole and when tender, drain and quarter. Place in a bowl with the diced onion, sausage, lemon zest, parsley and chives.

2. Mix together the lemon juice, mustard, oil, vinegar and honey into a dressing and toss with the salad. Put the salad in the fridge to cool until ready to serve.

Whatever you end up making, make sure you enjoy the day with your closest family and friends celebrating our freedom and our country.

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