In today's world, time and convenience are crucial commodities to most people. Safety, however, should remain a number one priority. Why save time if you are not going to take the additional time to ensure that you won't be hurt in the process? For example, a hot dog steamer is an ideal way to save time at birthday parties for children. If you do not know how to use it properly, however, you or the children may end up getting severely injured in the process. If you adhere to a few very basic concepts, you will produce excellent hot dogs in a timely manner with no risk of injury in the process.
Things You'll Need
Unplug the machine. Remove the juice tray and hot dog baskets from the machine. These components are located on the top of the machine; the juice tray is beneath the hot dog basket and catches any drips that are produced.
Add 8 to 9 qt. of hot water to the water bin, located at the bottom of the machine. (The hotter the water, the shorter the cooking time.) The water level should be at least 1/2 inch above the heating element when filled; there is usually a "fill" line to assist you in determining how much water to add. The element will heat the water and produce the steam, which cooks the hot dogs.
Place the tray and baskets back into the unit, then secure the wire baskets into place using the metal tabs located at either end of the baskets. Then place the hot dogs into the lower compartments above the water bin and the buns into the wire rack in the big compartment. Make sure to arrange the hot dogs and buns so the steam can circulate evenly throughout the compartments.
Turn the power switch located in the front of the machine to the "on" position. Set the thermostat control to "high" until it begins to make steam. At that time, you may adjust the thermostat control to a setting somewhere between "high" and "low." It should not need adjustment after this initial setting.
Keep the machine closed unless you are serving hot dogs. This will keep them thoroughly steamed. If the steam escapes through an open lid, the machine must produce more, which will take additional time. Also, periodically check that there is enough water in the machine to cover the heating element. You may have to refill it frequently, depending on how long you need to keep hot dogs ready.
Tips & Warnings
- If you will be serving your hot dogs immediately, use a higher temperature setting; use a lower setting if there is a chance they will be sitting for awhile.
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