Reinventing the Hot Dog: 5 Tasty Ideas From The French Culinary Institute

Sometimes you want a plain, garden-variety hot dog. This is for when you can't look at another boring supermarket bun and straight-from-the-package dog. Over at the French Culinary Institute they put on an annual hot dog contest. While it's a little classier than New York's Coney Island competition, it too celebrates the great American food. But I bet Coney Island has never seen the English breakfast hot dog!

FCI's blog The Hot Plate featured contestants from its fourth annual hot dog competition this week. And look at the creativity! Francine Lee, a current student at FCI, topped her hot dog with puréed baked beans, fried eggs, bacon, grilled portobello mushrooms, and grilled tomatoes to make a true English breakfast inspired hot dog.

Instead of regular chilli to top her dog, culinary student Bettina Will cooked up a batch of ground lamb chilli with sour cherries, cumin, and cinnamon. This gets us thinking about all the bun and hot dog possibilities -- never settle for boring hot dogs again!

What's your favorite spin on a traditional hot dog?

Read more: The Condiment Competition at The Hot Plate

Related: How to Prepare Chicago Style Hot Dogs

(Images: Flickr user TheBusyBrain licensed for use under Creative Commons)