Where to get good deli franks
Or... which brand to buy?
I'm a big fan of Hebrew National all-beef franks. But I also like a traditional natural casing deli frank (with pork) as well. In CT, they have Martin Rosel's, which are quite good. Up here, we have Kayem's, which aren't.
So where should I go if I want a good natural casing frank, and which brand should I look for?
I like Pearls too, but if they look like they've been hanging around the deli case for a while(it happens more in the winter), I get Boar's Head knockwurst.
Michael's deli in Coolidge Corner has Pearl dogs, and also great pastrami, corned beef, and much more.
yes to Pearls (I get mine at Michaels or Russos but they are widely available) and I also like Aaron's kosher knockwurst from the butcherie
Market Basket offers the best regular pricing on Pearl's natural casing beef.
Hannford offers Nathan's natural casing beef regular price for a bit under $4; occasionally, some Stop & Shops that carry them (usually only in the warmer half of the year) have a better price on sale, but Hannaford has by far the best regular pricing.
You can usually find Boar's Head natural casing beef in Stop & Shop, too.
The only place I've found Sabrett's natural casing beef locally in the past was Hilltop's shop.
I think I used to be able to get Grote & Weigel natural casing beef at Roche Bros, but it's been a long time since I bothered looking.
No one locally carries Karl Ehmer. Sad to say.
re: Karl S
Johnnie's Foodmaster carries a lot of the Grote & Weigel products, although not certain if they have the packaged dogs. At the deli I think they have pearl and dietz & watson, plus pearl packaged in the meat case, but more expensive on the pearls than Demoula's. Karl do you know who carries Blue Seal Kielbasa and maybe their dogs (not kosher)? I swear I have seen it around and their dogs which I have never had but would be curious to try. McKinnon's comes to mind as where I might have seen the dogs, although they don't have the kielbasa. I wish Demoula's would carry Blue Seal instead of Leidy's. For something different you could try the frankfurters from Karl's sausage kitchen.
I am not familiar with Blue Seal (not a Pioneer Valley guy) but their website makes clear that their kielbasa and franks include pork. Not kosher. And natural casings are almost invariably non-kosher (making things kosher from the lower half of an otherwise kosher animal is usually prohibitively expensive for industry - IIRC, you have to carefully remove one of the nerves or vasculature intact in order to make that part of the critter kosher - sheep are kosher, but generally not the sheep intestines used for the casings; hence why you don't see corned beef round in kosher delis, just the brisket or some other part of the upper half of the steer).
The franks at Karl's Sausage Kitchen are very mild, not kosher-style (that is, not spiced up and garlicky all-beef, even if the meat/casing is not certified kosher). They are good for their style, but not what I recommend to folks wanting a kosher-style dog. They are the kind that should classically be scalded in barely simmering water for 7 minutes, and served in pairs with a German roll and mustard (the classic serving method for franks in the Vaterland).
I've forgotten about Foodmaster and Grote & Weigel products; can't remember if they have their franks.