I had to figure out what goes in a Chicago hot dog, and it’s crazy. Whole pickle spears, multiple peppers, tomato slices—it’s like a vinegar salad on top of a weiner, loosely held together by an inedibly giant roll. I had one a couple years ago outside the Field Museum—“a real Chicago hot dog!” I thought, excited to be in Chicago and about to look at a bunch of dinosaur skeletons—and then a minute later my face shirt front was covered in hot dog toppings. How many long things with skins are you expected to be able to bite through at once in Chicago? Seven? Eleven? More than eleven?
Here is my perfect hotdog, are you ready? It’s very simple. Take one (1) crummy, cheap, steamed, wrinkled white bread hot dog bun; squirt a smallish amount of mayonnaise THAT’S RIGHT MAYONNAISE into the bun crotch; place one (1) weiner, or “frankfurter” if you speak one of the Germanic languages, into the mayoed bun crotch. The mayo acts as a delicious glue for your dog. On top of your one (1) dog and one (1) bun put a small amount of yellow mustard, twice that amount of ketchup (catsup if you’re a Francophone), a light dusting of white onions, and a little relish to one side. Serve in groups of three; eat as quickly as possible, before your stomach realizes what you’re doing to it and closes up shop. Burp your barbaric yawp all throughout the day; you’ve earned it.