In the past, I’ve sampled a few different attempts to create a meatless hot dog-like substance. Most failed miserably.
Tofurky, however, makes vegan sausages that come pretty close to the real thing. I’ve tried a couple of their varieties, and by far the best are their Beer Brats, but be careful how you cook them.
When I used to eat real hot dogs, my favorite way to cook them was to boil them. So, when I first tried a Tofurky Beer Brat, I looked at the cooking instructions, and low and behold, one of the described methods was to boil them. Big Mistake.
Tofurky Beer Brat and Beans
One thing that I have quickly discovered in cooking various meatless vegan commercial products is that they need to be cooked and cooked and cooked. And then cooked some more. Rare does not do it. Boiled Tofurky Beer Brats are terrible.
I did not give up, though, and needing a hot dog fix, I tried again, and this time I looked further on the instructions, and saw the part about heating in an oiled pan. Ah Ha!! So, I got out my pan, heated it with my vegan-foods-oil-of-choice, safflower oil, and placed in a couple of Beer Brats. I cooked them as evenly as possible on all sides, and being aware of the packages’ stern warnings about NOT OVERCOOKING, I took them out when they reached a golden brown.
The improvement was startling: So much better, but not yet perfect.
As I’ve mentioned, what I have found is that such vegan meat-like products need to be cooked within an inch of their vegetable-life. So, the next time I had the hot dog urge, I did it the same way, but cooked them on all sides not to golden brown, but to practically charcoal black. Success – cooked that much, they were great, and MrsHound and I have had them several times since, and we have several packages in the wings for future endeavors.
The photo shows my Beer Brat on a bun with lots of mustard and relish, and my favorite prepared canned beans, which thankfully are vegan – Bush’s Grillin’ Beans, Steakhouse Recipe. Careful, though, some of their other flavors besides the Steakhouse Recipe are NOT vegan!
This meal rates an 8 of 10 on the Hound scale.