Why are hot dogs so popular? They are fast, kid-friendly, they have saved many harried parents with no time to cook, and they just plain taste good. They also connect us with our childhood, our parents, and our hometown. They are also a cultural leveler because you can find anyone in line at a hot dog stand, from wealthy captains of industry to powerful politicians to movie stars to laborers and the homeless.
Hawt dawgs! Getchure red hawts! Here!
Every dog has its day, and for hot dogs that day is July 4.
Approximately 150 million hot dogs are consumed on Independence Day, enough to stretch from DC to LA more than five times, according to the National Hot Dog & Sausage Council.
Americans eat about two billion pounds of hot dogs every year. Laid end to end that’s enough to encircle the world more than 25 times. That’s 6.5 pounds per man, woman, and child.
It is said that Babe Ruth once inhaled 24 hot dogs between games of a double header and was rushed to the hospital with a serious case of indigestion. Rumors circulated that he was dead.
In 1995, three Seattle Seahawk football players, including quarterback Rick Meier, were fined $1,000 per man for snarfing hot dogs on the sidelines of a game. Their excuse: The aroma wafting from the stands was irresistible.
The average hot dog is consumed in six bites.
For some strange reason, the standard hot dog is 4 3/4″ long and the bun is 6″ long. That leaves 5/8″ of meatless bun. So what’s up with that?
The solution: Most manufacturers make bun-length dogs. That’s the good news. The bad news is that for some reason most stores do not carry bun-length dogs for all their brands. Grrrrrr.
Then there’s the issue of “jumbo” hot dogs that can be 3/4″ thick, or more. That’s nice if all you’re gonna put on it is mustard, but if you’re draggin’ it through the garden or loading it with chili, some of it will end up on your shirt and shoes.
Most hot dogs came in eight-packs and buns came in six- or 12-packs. This just doesn’t cut the mustard, so in May 2005, S. Rosen, maker of the most popular poppy seed bun in Chicago, and Vienna Beef, maker of the most popular beef frank in Chicago, signed a “piece” treaty that should be ranked with the diplomatic milestones of history: Each agreed to standardize their packaging with an 8 count to make sure no buns are left behind.
Oh yeah, and a “foot long” hot dog is just a little longer than 10″.
How big is the world’s largest hot dog? According to Guinness Book of Records it is an unbroken tube 16 feet one inch long and was built July 2, 2003 by Vienna Beef, Rosen Buns, and America’s Dog at Taste of Chicago. It contained 1 pound of onions, 1 pound of bright green relish, 42 sport peppers, 1 quart of mustard, 36 tomato slices, 36 kosher pickle spears, a whole lot of celery salt, and took seven people to assemble.
Published On: 4/24/2019 Last Modified: 5/9/2023