I've been wanting to do this post for a few weeks now, but getting hold of bratwurst sausages has been a little tough. I was unable to find a single shop in Portsmouth that sold them. Even the Bavarian market didn't sell any. (Well, even though they call it a Bavarian market, there's nothing Bavarian about it).
Eventually, though, I got hold of some.
The last few years has seen the rise of the gourmet burger, which has come about due to the popularity of high quality street food. Restaurants jumped on to this and the people have become more discerning.
So, it's about time that hotdogs have followed suit.
No longer should hotdogs be considered the stuff of over processed "meat" from jars of brine. They should be substantial and (at least) decent quality. And, of course, they should be accompanied by caramelised onions.
1kg onions, finely sliced
100g butter, unsalted
1tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 bratwurst per person
1 submarine roll per person
American-style yellow mustard, to serve
In a large pan, over a very low heat, gently melt the butter and add the onions. Allow to softly cook for an 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally at first and more frequently towards the end. They will drastically reduce in volume and will become prone to sticking to the pan. 5 minutes before the end, add the balsamic vinegar.
Caramelising onions is a long and slow process, and you must be patient. Rushing it will result in either them not cooking for long enough or becoming burnt and bitter.
Shallow fry or grill the bratwurst to colour them. Assemble the hotdogs by cutting vertically along the rolls, laying down a bed of onions, followed by the bratwurst and mustard.