A week and a half ago, Ivanka Trump served marshmallow hot dogs at her daughter’s birthday party, documented the moment on social media with the caption “Keeping it healthy,” and the internet promptly lost it. Casual.
And look, I get it. Prior to seeing her snaps, I had never heard of this culinary creation. Between the ironic caption and the idea of stuffing a hot dog (??) into a marshmallow (??), people just couldn’t wrap their heads around it.
Scenes from Arabella Kushner's 6th birthday party (with quite a balloon installation!) ???? pic.twitter.com/KrMeik8rYl
— Betsy Klein (@betsy_klein) July 17, 2017
But Ivanka’s birthday treats are far from unheard of: This is actually a popular snack traditionally served at Filipino birthday parties. Marshmallow hot dogs have long been revered for their ability to combine the sweet and the salty, all while remaining easy to consume and assemble. More importantly, according to Natalia Roxas, co-founder of Filipino Kitchen, they were created during a time of American occupation in the Philippines, when soldiers sold rations to the public. As Roxas told Delish, both marshmallows and hot dogs are inexpensive, making this “accessible to any socioeconomic class.”
Once I learned that this was a dish beloved by many, I set aside my initial judgements and decided to try it. (This logic is also how I became an un-ironic fan of One Direction, and that has worked well for me.) You can’t go wrong with combining processed meats with processed sugars, right?
Let’s find out.
Buy the correctly-sized marshmallows. I accidentally bought the bag of minis. Sigh.
Carefully melt marshmallows in 10 second increments in the microwave. There are no problems, only solutions. Now we can accurately call this a puff piece!
Grill ya dogs. Or have your roommate do it for you while you pry dried marshmallow off your fingers. This is not a very strict guide. Live your life.
Dip dog. Garnish dog, because the alternative didn’t look publishable. Eat!
THE FINAL VERDICT:
Eh, they were fine. They didn’t offend my tastebuds, but didn’t appeal to them, either. The marshmallow left a weird aftertaste (likely due to user error, re: MELTING THE DANG ‘MALLOWS) and I was grateful when it was time to focus on the hot dog.
This was undeniably fun to make and eat, though; I could see myself enjoying this as a childhood campfire tradition. Serving it at kids’ parties is brilliant; if my family made this for me growing up, it would be the dream. I can see why this is such a tried and true staple for some.
Ultimately, I am but a lazy workaholic who does not cook often. I liked trying this, although I am positive I didn’t do the dish justice. I can’t say I’ll ever take Ivanka Trump’s culinary advice again, but this marshmallow hot dog situation actually didn’t turn out that bad.