Safety Question: can you roast hot dogs in a gas fireplace?
An interesting question (remember, no question is stupid!) arose at lunch today, when we were discussing things to do at home with our kids on New Year's eve.
Can hot dogs be cooked on a stick over a gas log fireplace? (the fireplace under consideration is vented) Some of us thought that it would be like a cooking over a gas grill. Others were nervous about messing up the logs.
Any experienced fireplace cooking hounds out there?
You can cook hot dogs over anything except what's chemically toxic, like oleander or poison ivy (and you shouldn't even BE around burning oleander or poison ivy!). If you cook'em over paper or soft coal they'd taste crappy, but wouldn't hurt you. I have cooked those and quite a few other things over fires of dry cow poop, mostly just to show off, but with no ill effects...of course!
I happen to own a fireplace/bbq store and even though it would work, I will tell you....
Unless of course you don't mind replacing your gas logs. You should never wash gas logs. They're porous and can crack as well as absorb the grease. There is also the sand and embers below that will collect the drippings.
Nice sets are in the $300+ range these days.
Also, suet builds up on anything the flame touches in a gas fireplace. Notice the black spots on the logs? I'm not sure that's healthy to eat.
Then there's the possibility that your fireplace doesn't vent as well as it should and you'll get a grease layer on things close to your fireplace.
If your gas fireplace is not also a wood burning fireplace the answer is definitely not! That's not a fireplace at all, just an appliance masquerading as a fireplace.
Hold them over the stove instead. ;)
Thanks for all your input! Sounds as though the consensus is that they will probably not burn down the house or make the hot dogs toxic----but that the practice might make a greasy mess of the fake logs, which cannot be washed.
I will pass the information on to my colleague!
Thanks and have a delicious Thanksgiving,