Hecla family makes hot dogs, brats, buns for tasty cookouts

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By Katherine Grandstrand

kgrandstrand@aberdeennews.com

Five years ago, the Pioskes were ready for a change.

Tom Pioske was a highway patrolman when he started working for Jon and Stephanie Frohling at Frohling Quality Meats in Hecla.

After just two years in the shop, Tom and his wife, Gabrielle, made the commitment to buy the business. That was about three years ago.

Gabrielle Pioske said she and her husband love their work.

Frohlings has long been known for its sausage. Making their own allows the Pioskes some creativity — the spice blends and add-ins in brats can create some fun flavor combos.

“I like the pineapple brats, those are really good,” Gabrielle Pioske said. “We’ve got a spicy mozzarella and spicy Italian, I like both of those, and then probably the cheddarwurst. Those are kind of my favorite brats.”

That experience gives the family lots of choices for a cookout. But Pioske said the best way to cook a hot dog or bratwurst is simply over an open flame.

“We have a little fire pit in our backyard and either throwing them on a rack or on a stick or whatever and just kind of roasting them by the fire, that’s our favorite way,” she said. “We don’t get too crazy fancy with the toppings, just ketchup and mustard and a good homemade bun.”

Pioske makes buns from scratch for the store in Hecla.

“We’re kind of out in the middle of nowhere up here,” she said. “We ended up about a year ago just making our own.”

They also make natural casing hot dogs.

“It’s just sold in our store here,” Pioske said. “That’s my all-time favorite hot dog.”

Having that access to her food and how it’s made has brought peace of mind to Pioske, especially with small kids at home.

“I like knowing what’s going in it,” she said. “We don’t use chicken in any of our brats or hot dogs, it’s all beef or pork or a mixture, so we know that’s good, quality meat going in there.”

Some people are scared to give their kids hot dogs, not knowing all that goes into making the cookout favorite. That’s not true of Pioske since she knows how the sausage is made.

“Actually being able to make our own and work in a place like this, I know exactly what we put in them, and I know that it’s not anything gross and disgusting,” Pioske said.

Follow @kgrandstrandAAN on Twitter.

Frohling Quality Meats

25 W. Main St, Hecla

(605) 994-2632

Wednesday is National Hot Dog Day

Fun ways to dress up your hot dogs:

Reuben dog

• Sauerkraut.

• Swiss cheese.

• Russian or Thousand Island dressing.

• Great with rye buns.

Mac and cheese dog

• Macaroni and cheese.

• Crushed veggie crackers.

• Chopped parsley.

• Great with ciabatta buns.

French onion dog

• Heavily caramelized onions.

• Melted Gruyere.

• Fresh thyme.

• French loaf bread.

Hawaiian dog

• Pineapple chunks or grilled pineapple.

• Sweet cherry peppers.

• Fresh cilantro.

• Kings Hawaiian hot dog buns.

Popper dogs

• Prepared jalapeno poppers, diced if desired.

• Ranch dressing.

• Toasted buns.

Loaded potato dog

• Roasted red potatoes.

• Cheddar cheese.

• Sour cream.

• Chopped bacon.

• Chopped green onions.

• Toasted buns.

Source: Recipes adapted from She Knows

Hot dogs from Frohling Quality Meats can be found at grocery stores throughout northeast South Dakota. The hot dogs are pork and beef and are made in Hecla. American News photo by Katherine Grandstrand
Katherine Grandstrand, Taste columnist
Gabrielle Pioske