It is grilling season, you can smell it in the air if you walk around your neighborhood in the early evening. Like many Americans, you might own a gas or charcoal grill and enjoy the taste of grilled …
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Even though I don’t eat meat, I still enjoy the taste of grilled hot dogs, but my hot dogs are made with carrots. Carrot dogs are surprisingly good and very easy to make. Try this recipe and see what you think.
Carrot Hot Dog Recipe
4 hot dog buns for serving
4 large carrots
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 Tablespoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Water or vegetable stock as needed
Peel the carrots and cut the thickest end of each carrot to the length of your hot dog buns.
Place the carrots in a medium-sized pot that is wide enough to let the carrots lay flat. Add the remaining ingredients with enough water or vegetable stock to cover the carrots by one inch. Bring the pot to a boil and cover with a lid. Reduce the heat and let the carrots simmer for about seven minutes, or until they become slightly soft. Remove from the heat and let the carrots marinate for 30 minutes. You can also refrigerate the carrots in the liquid for up to four days.
Heat your grill to high and grill the carrots until they are slightly charred and the outside and warm in the center. Serve on hot dog buns with your favorite toppings.
It is grilling season, you can smell it in the air if you walk around your neighborhood in the early evening.
Like many Americans, you might own a gas or charcoal grill and enjoy the taste of grilled steak, chicken and sausage. If you follow my column, you know I recommend reducing or eliminating meat and processed foods from your diet for health reasons, so hot dogs are definitely on the naughty list.
Are there alternatives? What should you do if you still want the taste of grilled food?
As a chef, I know the most flavorful way to cook a steak, burger or sausage is over high heat to get a charred crust on the outside while leaving the inside moist and juicy. Known as the Maillard reaction, this adds a flavorful, caramelized outer layer to the food. Unfortunately, this cooking method produces cancer-causing compounds called heterocyclic amines, and there is double trouble when you consider the nitrates and nitrites used to make sausage.
Another problem with grilling is the development of harmful compounds known as Advanced Glycation End Products, or AGEs. AGEs exist in all meats and are more prevalent in meat that is cooked at high temperatures. Studies show that AGEs cause inflammation and are likely associated with the development of type-2 diabetes, kidney failure, premature aging and polycystic ovary syndrome.
The good news is that vegetables and fruits cooked at high temperature contain far fewer heterocyclic amines and AGEs, so I cook vegetables on my grill when I want that summer outdoor flavor. Cooking on a grill adds a flavor to vegetables and fruits that you can’t get with other cooking methods. The Internet provides a bounty of grilled fruit and vegetable recipes, and I suggest you do a quick search before your next outdoor party.
I enjoy grilled peaches, pineapple, eggplant, mushrooms and even lettuce. My favorite salad is a grilled Romaine lettuce salad. Simply take a head of Romaine lettuce, slice it in half lengthwise and brush the cut side with olive oil. Season it with a little salt, pepper and Italian herb blend and place the cut side on a hot grill for a minute or two until it starts to char. Remove it from the grill, drizzle with balsamic vinegar and top with diced tomatoes, olives and green onions for a wonderful summer salad.
Paul Webster is certified in Holistic Nutrition, Weight Management, Sports Nutrition and Training. His opinions are not necessarily those of Colorado Community Media. Questions and Comments can be set to Info@ServingHealthy.com
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