Yes, gluten-free corn dogs. Because historically the Stampede has been a no-eat zone for my celiac friends, who should be able to enjoy midway food too.
My friend Kerry owns Care Bakery, a gluten-free purveyor of baked goods that now supplies restaurants across the city with gluten-free alternatives for their pizzas, burgers, dogs and sandwiches. Her buns are so great (truly), they had to have special pans made that bake their logo right into the bottom of each bun so that customers can double check that a mistake wasn’t made in the kitchen.
So we got to talking last week about gluten-free corn dogs, and being the food enthusiast she is, she went home and whipped up a recipe, then ate five for quality control purposes. It’s very similar to most classic formulas; as with most gluten-free doughs, it’s generally best to use a combination of gluten-free flours (ie corn, rice) and some starch in place of the omnipresent wheat flour to make it keep its shape. This batter works beautifully; it’s nice and smooth, with the texture of pancake batter, and coats your choice of dog well without sliding off or undressing itself once it hits the oil. Rejoice in gluten-free food on a stick – even if you’re not on the hot tarmac beside the Tilt-a-Whirl.
Kerry’s Gluten-free Corn Dogs
1/2 cup corn flour or masa harina (Maseca from Co-op is the best)
3/8 cup rice flour (plus extra for dusting)
3/8 cup tapioca starch
1 1/2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/4- 1 1/2 cup buttermilk
1 large egg
gluten free hot dogs, halved crosswise, or cooked breakfast sausages
canola oil, for cooking
In a medium bowl, whisk together the corn flour, rice flour, tapioca starch, sugar, baking powder and salt. In a small bowl or measuring cup, whisk together the buttermilk and egg; add it to the dry ingredients and whisk until smooth.
Place some rice flour in a shallow bowl. Bring a couple inches of canola oil to 350-375F in a wide heavy pot.
Thread hot dog halves onto popsicle sticks and douse them in rice flour, then dip in the corn flour batter to coat. Carefully place into the hot oil and cook a few at a time (don’t crowd the oil, or it will cool it down), turning often with tongs, until golden on all sides. Remove and place on a paper towel-lined plate to drain.
Serve warm. Makes about a dozen corn dogs.