Posted by: Erica Retrochef | January 26, 2015

Sunday Dinner Hot Dogs

So I’ve been a little behind with updating recently. The reason is we have a new house! Newer kitchen — and still lots of old recipes with which to entertain and baffle my loyal readers.


This week, we’re attempting a recipe from a pamphlet published by Hebrew National, purveyors of kosher, all-beef hot dogs.



Split frankfurters almost through lengthwise, and open out. Allowing 2 frankfurters per serving, put half of frankfurters on baking sheet; top with a generous amount of your favorite stuffing. Cover each with a second split frankfurter, and top with a slice of beef-fry. Bake in moderate oven, 375°F., 20 minutes. Delicious with French-cut snap beans and whole-kernel corn.

Beef fry (or beef frye) is “bacon” made from beef navel (those beef navels that aren’t made into pastrami, that is). According to one source (The Wonders of America: Reinventing Jewish Culture 1880-1950) it was invented in the mid-1930’s; calling it “beef bacon” would have been technically non-kosher for the most strictly observant, but “beef frye,” no problem. Much to our surprise, we were able to find it at Whole Foods.


Beef navel, incidentally, is a less appealing name than pork belly… at least in my opinion.


So I carefully split the frankfurters “almost through” — it turns out just pushing straight down through a hot dog with a serrated knife leave just the bottom edge intact, and they butterfly out quite nicely.

This is a technique I expect to never use again, incidentally.


Then I wadded a “generous amount” of stuffing on top.


And finally we put the mysterious “beef fry” on top! It looks and smells a lot more like pastrami than bacon — although without any cracked pepper around the edges.


These… inverted sandwiches?… were pretty tasty. Decent hot dog, plus decent stuffing, and so overall the flavor was great. Eating it was a little awkward: the hot dog and beef fry needed to be sliced, and while that was happening the stuffing all squished out, so you sort of ended up with pile of stuffing with bits of meat all over the place. And surprisingly, one of the kids declared he hates stuffing — luckily, another decided she hates hot dogs, so they swapped and everyone was satisfied. If you try it yourself, just leave the top hot dog and beef fry (or bacon) off — it wasn’t really necessary. But for a reasonably simple Sunday Dinner, this worked.

The Hebrew National pamphlet was shared on Flickr by Paula Wirth.


  1. Ha! I saw “Hebrew National Franks” then bacon, and thought, “Huh? TURKEY bacon?! WHY?! (My experience with turkey bacon was not great). However, the beef “bacon” looks pretty good!

    • I have had some bad turkey bacon too, although it can be good if well seasoned. The beef bacon actually struck me as similar in concept, if not taste — nobody would think this was pork bacon, but it was tasty on its own merits 🙂

    • Structurally, beef bacon is a lot more similar to pork bacon. A rasher of beef bacon is a slice of meat, with both muscle and belly fat. Turkey bacon is made from ground bits of light and dark meat; the different colors are laid out to resemble the muscle and fat stripes of regular bacon. However, both alternatives to pork belly bacon can be quite tasty.

  2. Hebrew National hot dogs, and Nathans hot dogs, are national brands that are pretty tasty (though waaaay too salty), in the event I can’t buy our local natural-casing hot dogs…. The salt content of this dish must be very high, though it looks darn good.

  3. So growing up, my mom used to make what she called hot dog s’mores: halved hot dogs spread with mustard with a generous topping of mashed potatoes, broiled until slightly brown. …And I love them.

    • That sounds delicious, and a smidge less greasy than this preparation! Thanks for the idea 🙂

  4. I have never seen beef bacon. How is that possible???
    Congrats on the new house–I know that moving isn’t really conducive to blogging. I’m just getting to Thanksgiving now!

    • It isn’t quite as magical as pork bacon. Yeah, it seems like there’s a retro blogger tend to get new missing recently! Who’s next? 😉

  5. Beef navel sounds unfortunately intimate. I don’t like getting so close to my meat sources.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: