Follow me through the adventures that take place in my kitchen, in restaurants or in other kitchens. Cooking and food are my passions and I want to share my experiences of cooking, baking and eating with you.
I'm a Greek self-taught cook who lives in Chicago. I learned a lot about cooking from both of my grandmothers, my mom and dad, family and friends. Passing on timeless traditions through food is one thing I strive to do in life.
These are my journeys through culinary exploration...
clraptis (at) gmail (dot) com
GPOYHDW (Gratuitous Picture Of Your Hot Doug’s Wednesday)
I had an absolutely amazing few days this past weekend. A friend of mine came into town to visit kind of spur-of-the-moment and I was on a mission to show him the best of what this beautiful city has to offer. His food requests were simple: deep dish pizza and hot dogs.
In my opinion, the only place to take someone for dogs and sausages is Hot Doug’s. After waiting in line for almost two hours, we had finally reached the height of deliciousness. The wide variety of freshly made sausages makes the long wait worth it… but for me, the closer we get to the counter to order - the more anxious I get about which one to sink my teeth in. I go back and forth with extreme indecisiveness and just about have a nervous breakdown when we reach Doug standing there with his notepad.
Pictured above is my sausage: Three-Chili Wild Boar Sausage with Sweet Jalapeno Mustard, Garlic-Cheddar Cheese Spread and Crispy Fried Onions
I absolutely loved the garlic cheddar spread… it added a necessary creaminess to each bite that balanced the heat level of the chilies and jalapeño mustard. The added crunch of the fried onions really gave it that punch of texture that is needed on any dog, sausage or brat. Why else do we always add condiments, relishes and other toppings to our dogs?
Above is my friend’s selection: Brown Ale and Chipotle Buffalo Sausage with Dark Beer Mustard and Hickory-Smoked Sweet Swiss Cheese
I can’t stress enough how worth the wait is at Hot Doug’s. If you live in Chicago or visit, stopping here is a MUST. Bring something or someone to keep you occupied while you wait. Once you get to the counter, sort through making the big decision and sit down while you (im)patiently wait for your sausage… you will be thrilled to see what is set in front of you and that first juicy bite of a homemade encased <insert choice of meat here> will be a tasty experience you won’t ever forget.
P.S. Go on a Friday or Saturday to get the duck fat fries!