Some nights you want to make something super simple that you know your kids will eat, but you want to add something for the adults to make it a little more interesting. Enter the banh mi hot dog. A product of French colonialism in Indochina, by the 1950s bahn mi sandwiches had become a popular street food in Vietnam. You can now find them everywhere in foods carts and restaurants across the country and world. Turns out, they’re also super easy to make at home, and are healthyish. A traditional banh mi combines:
*Pickled daikon radish and carrots
*Spice, most commonly from jalapeno peppers or sriracha
*Meat or a combination of meats such as pork belly, ham, pate, etc. OR tofu or other meat alternative for a vegetarian option
The French part comes in when everything is layered deliciously onto a baguette.
I love a good banh mi. The combination is fresh, crunchy, meaty, spicy and satisfying. Yum!
Banh Mi Hot Dogs
(This is not meant to be a super authentic version, but is my easy interpretation of it)
Daikon Radish, 1/2 cup julienned or shredded. Make it easy with this Messermeister julienne peeler(careful–it’s super sharp!)
Carrot, 3/4 cup julienned or shredded
Cucumber, 3/4 cup thinly sliced
2 T rice vinegar
2 T sugar
1/2 t salt
Cilantro, 1/2 cup leaves
Mayonaise, 4 T
Sriracha, to taste
Hot dogs or meat alternative*
Hot dog buns
Preheat oven to 350.
Start with the pickled veg**. Toss the radish, carrot and cucumber together with the salt, sugar and vinegar. Let sit for at least 15 minutes.
Heat oil in a saute pan over medium heat. Add hot dogs and 1/3 cup water. Cook until water evaporates and allow hot dogs to brown a bit.
Slice buns and toast in oven for five minutes.
Mix sriracha into mayo to taste–I like about a 50/50 ratio.
Now, for the good part, assembly time!
Slather both sides of the hot dog buns with sriracha mayo. Place hot dog or meat alternative in buns. Pile pickled veg evenly among buns (You don’t really want to have leftovers-though delicious they really stink up your fridge!). Garnish with cilantro leaves and another drizzle of sriracha mayo. Serve your kids a plain dog with ketchup and mustard, and sneak a pile of the pickled veg on the side for them to try. Enjoy!
*you can use veggie dogs, tofu, seitan, you name it
**from Melissa Clark’s shortcut Banh Mi recipe, New York Times