Charlotte's Fancy Hot Dogs
Anybody can serve hot dogs, but it takes a real cook to serve
them on hamburger buns!
When I was a real mom and stayed home raising kids, I read
once that if you sliced diagonally a little bit into a regular hotdog and then dropped it
into boiling water, as it steamed it would form a circle. Believe me, it works. Johnny and
Tina used to like round hot dogs on hamburger buns with chili in the middle.
John Blehs Mothers
Absolutely Tremendous Barbecue Sandwiches
The first barbecue/sloppy joe sandwiches I had in this
country were from Johns mother. They were so good that John and I even bought our
own steel meat grinder (about 1965 when we were newly weds) because his mother used one to
grind her own meat for goetta - and that youll learn about later in this book
so we could do the same thing. We never had a wheat grinder nor a coffee grinder, but that
meat grinder for barbecue was a priority.
Johns mother does everything well cooking,
cleaning, sewing, making silk flowers before this became a popular decorating took,
decorates cakes so beautifully that you never want to eat them, and did a great job
raising John and his sister, Ronnie, and his brothers "Whitey" (Carl, Jr.) and
Greg. Shes the kind of "old fashioned" Mom I wished I could be.
But, to the barbecue:and this is a sandwich you eat with a
fork - If I remember correctly, she would take the leftovers from the pot roast she had
made the night before (which, needless to say, was also wonderful) and grind up the meat
and the onions and the carrots through her meat grinder. Then she would simply add
barbecue sauce and serve it on hamburger buns.
In Cincinnati, you could get these tremendous dark rye, not
quite pumpernickel, buns which were so good and John enjoyed so much.
You have to remember that Cincinnati was settled by Germans,
used to be called Porkopolis, and so German food there is not only popular, but its
authentic. Just a little trivia here, Oprah Winfrey made a movie called Beloved, set in
the post Civil War/ Reconstruction era, and the set design for Cincinnati shows that
German and pork influence.
Oh, and this I think is also a Cincinnati thing
Ive often seen coleslaw as a side dish with barbecue, but Johns family served
the slaw on top of the meat in the sandwich and its good that way. (But
Ive started to make my coleslaw with pineapples and pecans or walnuts added, and I
dont think that would be too great with the barbecue sandwhich).
Now, Are These Roast Beef, Ham or BLT
The Three Little Pigs story and this rhyme were always
favorites of ours we would tell the story and repeat the rhymes often and since we
had so many children we were always able to name the pigs after Johnny, Teenie, Stephie,
Elsie, and also throw in Mommy and Daddy on occasion (and, of course, toe pulling was
always fair game):
This little piggy went to market,
This little piggy stayed home,
This little piggy had roast beef,
This little piggy had none.
And this little piggy cried,
Wee! Wee! Wee!
All the way home.