Really, what is the best way to make a hotdog?

The age-old question: what is the best way to prepare a hotdog?

Steamed, fried or barbecued? Everyone has a preference -- a strong preference

Kevin Tibbles sets up a three-person hotdog debate on CBC's Midday. 0:15

Something to know before you say the wrong thing at a barbecue this summer: People have very strong opinions on how hotdogs are supposed to be prepared — and also on what they're supposed to be called.

A group of children is seen cooking hotdogs over a fire at Saskatchewan's Prince Albert National Park in August of 1948. (Frank Royal/National Film Board of Canada/Photothèque/Library and Archives Canada/PA-169870)

In July of 1994, CBC's Midday corralled three "hotdog lovers" to share their views on the proper way to prepare hotdogs.

'They're not called hotdogs'

And like the hotdogs themselves, the conversation at times got heated.

On CBC-TV's Midday, Carl Amabili of Montreal and Peter Black of Vancouver discuss hotdogs -- and whether the best ones can be found in Montreal. 1:14

"They're not called hotdogs, they're called frankfurters," said Vancouver butcher Peter Black, when grilling the Montreal-based Carl Amabili — a fellow hotdog connoisseur — about what these wieners should be known as.

But Amabili didn't agree with what was being served up during the discussion. To him, frankfurters and hotdogs were as different as ketchup and mustard.

"We're talking about the hotdogs in particular, we're not talking about frankfurters," he told CBC's Midday.

Fried? 'The wrong way to do it'

The Midday discussion also delved into the deep divide among the panellists on the right way to prepare hotdogs.

On CBC-TV's Midday, a discussion on hotdogs reveals strong individual preferences when it comes to preparation. 0:44

Elyse Friedman of Winnipeg preferred a griddle-fried hotdog.

"Hotdogs just don't have enough fat in them and I really believe that the mark of a good hotdog is that after you eat it, you should feel like showering," she said.

To Black, frying a hotdog was "definitely the wrong way to do it." He said barbecuing was the way to go.

Carl Amabili told Midday viewers that the 'perfect' hotdogs for Montrealers were steamed hotdogs. 0:17

Amabili, meanwhile, was talking up the steamed hotdog.

"Here in Montreal, we just put it in the steamer itself — within a few minutes, you've got a perfect hotdog, you just have to put on your own condiments," he said.

Mustard and relish? 'That's commonplace'

What to put on top? It was a question as loaded as hotdogs themselves.

There are many ways to dress a hotdog -- and just as many opinions on how that should be done. (Stephan Savoia/AP)

Amabili said many Montrealers would have mustard, relish, onions and some coleslaw — a condiment combination known there as all dressed.

Friedman called for mustard, relish, fried onions and a slice of processed cheese.

Calling mustard and relish "commonplace," Black said "a good hotdog" called for a topping of sauerkraut "with chips and bacon in it." 

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