CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- I wasn't looking for a Sloppy Joe recipe and I literally didn't find one when leafing through a hot dog chili cookbook, but one eventually did come into being from that source.
My friend the late Harry Lynch, of Summersville, was a champion home cook. He either won a prize or was a finalist in a variety of national contests, including the Pillsbury Bake Off. He was a local and regional chili contest winner as well. However, by his own admission, he didn't know how to make a good hot dog chili.
He set about researching and taste-testing frankfurter chili blends, which resulted in "Hot Dogs from Almost Heaven," his all-manner-of-dogs-and-toppings cookbook that was published a few years ago.
This recipe is the picante and beef sauce for his Mexi-dog. I thought it was a good stand-in for a Sloppy Joe, so I separated it from the dog, gave it a Texas border-style name and voilà, today's offering.
The ingredients were light to begin with, so there wasn't any switching to something different. You could go with ground turkey instead of lean ground beef, if that's your preference. I highly recommend the Harvestland brand ground turkey as well as chicken breasts and tenderloins available at Walmart.
If you would like to make Lynch's Mexi-dog, choose a wiener of your choice (we like Oscar Mayer Light), grill or pan fry to get some dark edges. Place in toasted English buns; add a thin stream of ketchup (per Lynch but I switched it to spicy taco sauce); top with the picante and beef sauce and fresh chopped onions. I added the option of 2 percent shredded Mexican cheese as an additional topper.
Southwestern Sloppy Joe (Picante and Beef Sauce)
Makes about 4 servings.