It was supposed to be an easy meal for an easy Sunday evening. It was just hot dogs. Good Hebrew National hot dogs with my chili and slaw. And I’d get the chili and slaw made Saturday or Sunday morning so after getting two kids to camps, we could chillax with the youngest three and eat with ease when we were ready.

Well, didn’t get the slaw and chili made Saturday. Well, didn’t get the slaw an chili made Sunday morning.

About noon, me to my Husband: Do you mind having chow chow on your dog rather than chili and slaw?

(chow chow is a runner-up when we don’t have the others)

Husband: I’ll just warm up the leftover taco meat. And we can get slaw from store.

(note to me, my chili and slaw are really good)

Me: No, it isn’t the same.

So, then flattered by my husband’s spoken flexibility and unspoken compliment to my cooking, I must make the chili and slaw. I can’t let the man down! And I have all the ingredients because I planned and neither take much effort to make, just time. When I’d rather be on the dock watching the kids swim. But most importantly, I can’t let my man down!

And so this little moment compels me to share my slaw and hot dog chili recipes. These both began as recipes of others that I tailored to our tastes over time. And you can tailor them, too. This is cooking, not baking…so please don’t be overwhelmed with my precise quantities and directions.

Southern Slaw
regular size head of cabbage

1 c sugar

1/2 c apple cider vinegar

1/4c oil

2 tsp salt

1 tsp celery seed


Shred or chop the cabbage (we chop it for hot dogs and shred it for BBQ) and stir in sugar and let the slaw sit in fridge, covered, for a couple of hours. Longer is fine. Generally less than an hour, not so much.
After cabbage has set, put remaining ingredients in a small pot and bring to a boil. Pour over slaw and stir, mixing well. Let slaw sit for as long as possible. Overnight is best, a few hours at least. It gets better with age and keeps for a few weeks so this is something you can make in large batches and use with several meals.



Hot Dog Chili

2 lbs ground beef

1 c water

1 c tomato sauce

1/2 c ketchup

1/2 T salt

1/2 T pepper

1 T sugar

1-1/2 T extra spicy chili powder

1 t crushed red pepper flakes


Brown ground beed, rinse well, rinse pan. While beef draining, mix all the remaining ingredients in the pot and begin to warm to a boil, adding meat when drained. I let it simmer down slowly and use a potato masher to break meat into fine pieces as I stir it. This halves and doubles well and keeps about a week without freezing. It’s great for lots of purposes.