Beignets de Chien Chaud au Maïs, or, Corn Dogs High/Low

17 03 2010

Nick’s birthday was a few weeks ago, and as it fell on a Saturday when the horses were running at Vincennes, he wanted to get some people together for hot dogs and beer before heading out to the races.  Since it was a special occasion, I wanted to do a little something extra, and I remembered that I read a post a while back about corn dogs, which I don’t even like, historically, but something about being in France makes me want fried things I don’t normally eat when I’m at home in the States.

Can't you just hear the sizzle?

Anyway, it was Nick’s special day, and he loved the idea.  So corn dogs it was.  I used Alton Brown’s recipe, with a couple of changes.  I left out the jalapeño, and seeing as creamed corn doesn’t exist in France, I substituted regular canned corn, buzzed with the immersion blender.

I bought a huge pack of cheap wooden chopsticks at an Asian restaurant supply store to use as sticks, but since French hot dogs (aka Knacks) are so much thinner than their American counterparts (maybe because they don’t go frying themselves in corn batter?) I used only one stick per dog, instead of the recommended two.

Round 1

I was actually surprised at how well this recipe worked.  I don’t know why.  But let me tell you, it was seriously awesome to pull real live corndogs out of the bubbling oil in the Dutch oven.  And do you know what was even more awesome?

Classic corndog meal

We had French’s yellow mustard to dunk them in.  (Ah, irony.)

But I had some leftover batter, even after frying up 10 of those puppies.  I thought it would be fun to go all classy with it – fold in some whipped egg whites and call it soufflé.  Come to think of it, some Dijon mustard probably would have been pretty good in there, too.

Before and After
1. corn ramekin before, 2. corn ramekin after

Despite my greasing the ramekin (and the loaf pan – you’ll see in a minute), the soufflés didn’t rise all that much.  Oh, well, it still tasted good – like cornbread, but lighter and moister.

The aforementioned loaf.

In fact, one person to whom I served it immediately called it spoonbread.  Maybe not the ultra-classy French dish I had in mind, but still a delicious side to roast chicken.  Or curry potpie, if it happens to be a clean-out-the-fridge kind of dinner.


On this day in 2008: Mac N Cheese: A Classic French Dish

Originally published on Croque-Camille.




20 responses

17 03 2010

Oh gosh, that last photo makes me hungry even though I just ate half a loaf of pain d’epice… or maybe it’s my body trying to tell me that I very much need some vegetables? The corndogs look spectacularly golden – and I’m in awe of anyone who deep-fries in their home kitchen!

17 03 2010

I’ve heard of corn dogs but had no idea what they were! I’m almost tempted to try them myself, if only I wasn’t scared of the deep frier!

I love your soufflé/spoonbread, whatever you call it it looks good!

17 03 2010

Obviously, I can’t appreciate the corn dogs, but the souffle sounds yummy! I may try that!

18 03 2010

Happy Birthday to Nick! We were seriously pleased w/the way these guys turned out when we made them in October. Will definitely make them again. I love your “spoonflé” take on the leftover batter, too!

18 03 2010
hungry dog

Camille, I love this post! I’m not much for corndogs either but I bet if lived overseas it would make me crave ultra-American things now and then, such as the corndog. And honestly, yours look fabulous! Happy birthday to Nick!

18 03 2010

Hannah – It does smell up the house for a day or so, but it’s totally worth it. Isn’t chocolate a vegetable? No, wait. it’s a fruit.

Sam – I bet you could make a baked version, with bits of sausage in cornbread. Ok, I might just have to make that now.

nererue – I’m trying really hard to think of a vegetarian substitue for the hot dogs… 😉

pastrychef – Spoonflé! Brilliant! I’m going to start using that one.

hungry dog – Funny how that works. Thank you, from me and Nick!

18 03 2010

The spoonbread looks delicious! congrats on a worthy (and fun) experiment!!

19 03 2010

You are ingeneous and the corn dogs look terrific. I found your site by chance, but I’ll be back often. Have a great day…Mary

19 03 2010
Tammy McLeod

I’d never be brave enough to attempt corndogs but the bread looks amazing. I do something like that in a crockpot.

19 03 2010

Wow, those look great! Now I want corn dogs for lunch…

19 03 2010

researchingparis – Thank you! It was fun, too.

Mary – After a comment like that, I definitely will! 🙂

Tammy – Really? You can bake in a crockpot? I had no idea!

Ryan – I know! Writing this post just made me want more!

20 03 2010

My husband’s birthday is the week after next, and now I know what to surprise him with. He’s a big fan of the ol’ corn dog (sort of to my chagrin), but I never would’ve imagined making them. He’ll be amazed.

20 03 2010
Ann Mah

Very impressive, Camille! Alas I know I’ll never be making these because I’m scared of deep frying, too. But they look dee-licious!

20 03 2010


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21 03 2010

Trisha – I’m sure he’ll be delighted! And trust me, homemade corn dogs are WAY better than their industrially-produced cousins.

Ann – Merci! I wonder why so many people are afraid of deep-frying?

21 03 2010

For my part, I got turned off it a bit when my dad cooked fries and the house smelt of oil for DAYS. Also, logistically speaking, what do you do with the oil when you’re done? I’ve heard you can’t pour it down the sink?

22 03 2010

Hannah – No, you can’t. Well, not unless you want to deal with a stopped up pipe somewhere down the line. I strain and reuse the oil a few times, and when I’m done with it I pour it into a sealable can (like the kind peanuts are sold in) and throw that out.

22 03 2010
Pie Therapy « Croque-Camille

[…] now for a minor digression: my last post, the one about corn dogs, prompted a number of comments admitting fear of deep-frying.  Frankly, this puzzles me.  As long […]

18 04 2010

Those corn dogs look epic 😀 I love the idea of doing it myself! They look better then any greasy food chain! 🙂

19 04 2010

Jocelyn – My thoughts exactly. 🙂

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