A hot dog is
a type of cooked, cured and often smoked sausage
of even texture and flavor that is softer and more moist
than most sausages, and the sausage most readily eaten as
finger food, especially in the United States. As finger
food, it is usually placed hot in a soft sliced bun of the
same shape as the sausage, and optionally includes
condiments and toppings. The resulting sandwich is also
called a hot dog.
The flavor of hot
dogs varies widely by region and by personal preference as
do the toppings. The flavor of the sausage itself somewhat
resembles bologna on the bland side, to cooked
salami for the spicier varieties.
Hot dogs are
traditionally made from beef,
pork or a combination
of those meats. Unlike many other sausages (which may be
sold cooked or uncooked), hot dogs are always cooked
before being offered commercially. Barring spoilage, they
may be safely eaten without further cooking or reheating
but are often unpalatable that way. Vegetarian sausages
made from meat analogues can also be made into hot dogs.
Hot dogs are also
called frankfurters, or franks for short
(named after the city of Frankfurt, Germany), or wieners
or weenies (named after the city of Vienna,
Austria, whose German name is "Wien"). In
Australia the term frankfurt is used rather than frankfurter
and a tiny version called a cocktail frank or cocktail
weenie is sometimes served at parties and eaten on the
end of a toothpick.
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