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When is a hot dog not a hot dog?

When it’s a Top Dog!

Top Dog Hot DogAt Grid Iron we’re big fans of the hot dog and the traditional British sausage. This led us on a quest to create a traditional sausage with the flavour of a hot dog but made from the best Yorkshire Dales pork. Hence the idea of the Top Dog was born.

We know that you can’t beat a quality bratwurst or frankfurter without years of experience, but this isn’t the point. We don’t want to compete with the hot dog. We want to offer an alternative uncured sausage with the finest ingredients and nothing questionable added to it.

We started by testing various mixtures of beef and pork, using some well brought up and cared for Yorkshire pork and our favoured Longhorn beef. After various trials and tastings we’ve settled on a 100% pork content for our Top Dogs for now, but we may well go back to adding beef, as this gives us the texture and “bite” that we’re looking for.

Next came a long period of refining the seasonings and testing the quantities of each, not only to get the flavour we want, but also the colour without adding any artificial flavourings or colours. With the help of a traditional spice company, Laycocks in Keighley, we were able to come up with the ideal mix.

We set out with the intention of making the Top Dog available to a wide audience. Now, we know it’s not going to work for vegetarians, but we’ve done pretty well with other aspects. We’ve cut down on all but two allergens (mustard and celery) without which the taste wasn’t what we wanted. By trial and error we’ve also succeeded in getting the texture that we want and keeping the Top Dog gluten free.

So all in all, we’re pretty much ready to release our Top Dog to the public, and we’ll be doing so at this year’s Kilnsey Show in the local food area and then later in the year at our Pop Up restaurant somewhere, TBA, in the Yorkshire Dales.

Now we’re looking for the perfect bread roll to do justice to the Top Dog.