Salsa Macha Dogs with Takis

published May 27, 2022
summer
Salsa Macha with Crushed Takis Dogs Recipe

All-beef hot dogs with homemade salsa macha and crushed takis

Makes8 hot dogs

Prep20 minutes

Cook45 minutes

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Grilled hot dogs with a red spice  topping, and chips and black bean dip on the side
Credit: Photo: Jason Rampe; Food Styling: Amelia Rampe

This recipe is part of Kitchn 100 — the hundred recipes you need right now. Check out all of the amazing dishes, from Kitchn and beyond, here.

I discovered salsa macha — salsa made with dried chiles, garlic, nuts, seeds, and oil that hails from the state of Veracruz — through my friends at Boonville Barn Collective, who had started growing a rare comapeño chile pepper that comes from the same area in Mexico.

I initially developed an oil-based salsa recipe using their chile powder, which resembles Lao Gan Ma chili crisp but with a completely different flavor profile. With each subsequent batch, I started mixing and matching fresh and dried chili peppers. After lots of experimentation, I landed on two pasilla, two ancho, two morita, and two guajillo chiles for a medium-spicy but roasty-sweet flavor.

It was so good that I was using it on everything. I drizzled it on fried eggs, congee, and tacos and added the remaining cooking oil to the finished salsa and used it as a dip for tortilla chips. And then the salsa found its way onto hot dogs.

I curate the toppings for the weekly hot dog special at Wonderville, an arcade gallery and bar in Brooklyn, and the salsa macha has a starring role on a fiery number I called the Grim Fandoggo, named after the 1998 adventure video game Grim Fandango. In addition to the sherry vinegar-infused salsa macha on the hot dog, I use fresh tomato to help balance out the salt, and crushed Takis for a burst of umami. I prefer the lime-y Fuego Takis, which is a fan favorite among my gamer friends, but you can replace it with plain salted or flavored tortilla chips, like Nacho Cheese or Cool Ranch Doritos.

Credit: Photo: Jason Rampe | Food Styling: Amelia Rampe

If You Make Salsa Macha Dogs, a Few Tips

  • Score the hot dogs. Scoring the dogs helps sneak more flavor into every bite. You can score them with diagonal lines or do a cross-hatch pattern for even more grooves for catching the salsa.
  • Go for a split-top bun. I love split-top hot dog buns so toppings don’t go flopping out when it’s on a plate. It’s like a bun with its own kickstand! But if you can’t find them, regular buns work just fine.

Salsa Macha with Crushed Takis Dogs Recipe

All-beef hot dogs with homemade salsa macha and crushed takis

Prep time 20 minutes

Cook time 45 minutes

Makes 8 hot dogs

Nutritional Info

Ingredients

  • 6

    cloves garlic

  • 1

    bunch fresh oregano, plus more for garnish

  • 1

    medium plum tomato (about 5 ounces)

  • 1 1/2 cups

    mixed dried chiles, such as pasilla, ancho, morita, and guajillo

  • 2 cups

    olive oil

  • 1/2 cup

    dry roasted, unsalted peanuts

  • 2 cups

    Takis Fuego Flavor (about 5 ounces)

  • 3 tablespoons

    sherry vinegar

  • 1 tablespoon

    toasted white sesame seeds

  • 2 teaspoons

    packed dark brown sugar

  • 1/2 teaspoon

    kosher salt

  • 8

    all-beef hot dogs

  • 8

    hot dog buns, preferably split-top

  • Tortilla chips, for serving (optional)

Instructions

  1. Thinly slice 6 garlic cloves. Pick the leaves from 1 bunch fresh oregano sprigs until you have 2 tablespoons (pick some more for garnish if desired). Trim 1 medium plum tomato and cut into small dice (about 1 cup).

  2. Working over a large bowl, remove the stems from dried chiles and using kitchen shears, cut the chiles into 1/2-inch strips until you have 1 1/2 cups. Agitate them in the bowl to remove the seeds that fall to the bottom.

  3. Heat 2 cups olive oil in a 10-inch high-sided skillet or wok over medium-high heat until 300ºF. Add the garlic and 1/2 cup dry roasted peanuts and fry for 3 minutes, adjusting the heat as needed to maintain an oil temperature of 300ºF.

  4. Add the dried chiles (leave the seeds behind in the bowl and discard) and press down on them with a wooden spoon to submerge in the oil. Fry, stirring often, until the garlic is browned on the edges and the chiles are softer and more pliable, 3 to 5 minutes.

  5. Remove the pan from the heat and let sit for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, heat the grill, crush the Takis, and score the hot dogs. Heat an outdoor grill for direct, medium-high heat (about 375ºF).

  6. Using the tip of a knife, score parallel lines about 1/4-inch deep into 8 hot dogs on a slight diagonal, spacing them about 1/2-inch apart. If you’d like a cross-hatch pattern, repeat the scoring, making these lines perpendicular to the first set.

  7. Place 2 cups Takis in a food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Pulse 3 or 4 times, then process until coarsely ground, about 15 seconds for 1 minute. Transfer to a bowl or storage container.

  8. Wipe the bowl of the food processor with a paper towel or use a dry brush to remove any crumbs. Add the oregano, 3 tablespoons sherry vinegar, 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds, 2 teaspoons packed dark brown sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt.

  9. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the peanuts, chiles, and garlic to the food processor. Add 1/2 cup of the spicy oil to the food processor. Process for 30 seconds, scraping down the sides of the bowl once or twice. Pulse to break up any large pieces, being careful not to turn it into a paste. Transfer to a bowl or storage container.

  10. Place the hot dogs on the grill and grill uncovered until slightly charred and the hot dogs bend along the scored lines, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer to the upper rack of the grill, a cooler spot on the grill, or a baking sheet tented loosely with aluminum foil to keep warm.

  11. Working in batches if needed, place 8 hot dog buns on a cut side (for split-top buns) or cut-side down (for regular) on the grill. Grill uncovered until toasted (flip the split-top buns halfway through to toast both sides), 30 seconds to 2 minutes total.

  12. To assemble, place a hot dog in a bun. Give the salsa macha a good stir and spoon 1 tablespoon onto each hot dog. Sprinkle with the tomatoes (about 2 tablespoons each) and Taki crumbs (heaping tablespoon each). Garnish with a few fresh oregano leaves if desired.

  13. To turn the remaining salsa macha into a dip for tortilla chips, stir in the remaining cooking oil.

Recipe Notes

Chips: The Takis can be substituted with any flavored Doritos. For a lower-salt option, substitute with unsalted tortilla or corn chips.

Nuts: Raw, unsalted pumpkin seeds can be used in place of the peanuts, but add them to the oil with the chiles.

Oregano: 1 tablespoon dried oregano can be substituted for the fresh oregano

Vinegar: Sherry vinegar can be substituted with rice vinegar, white vinegar, or even pickle brine.

Make ahead: The salsa macha can be made up to 1 week ahead and refrigerated in an airtight container. The Takis can be ground up and stored in an airtight container for up to 3 months.