I know, these are a little weird. Your kids, however, will think hot dog cutters are awesome because they make kids bento lunches (or any lunch) much cuter. I first saw hot dog art on a Japan Airlines flight when my then 1-year-old was served something that looked like a mini squid, when it actually was a hot dog shaped like an octopus.
You can find these gems on eBay or at Japanese kitchen stores.
They work on Trader Joe’s turkey dogs, though they are designed for those little cocktail wiener things (ew).
Basically, get some kitchen scissors and cut the uncooked hot dog the same length as the cutters.
Smash the hot dogs into the cutters by putting the tops on.
Boil the hot dogs and voila – little penguins, fish and whatever.
So, how do you eat these? Well, La Jolla Girl just dips them in ketchup, but Japanese eat them with rice dishes. I mixed up some of these in sliced, steamed carrots once and the novelty of them caused her to actually eat the carrots. The choice is yours.
Back to focusing on kids bento lunches because I’m off to Tokyo in a few weeks and I’m positive I’m going to come home with more bento trinkets. Get ready.