New British Prime Minister Theresa May announced six members of her Cabinet Wednesday.

Amid a sweeping crackdown on dissent in Egypt, security forces have forcibly disappeared hundreds of people since the beginning of 2015, according to a new report from Amnesty International.

It's an "unprecedented spike," the group says, with an average of three or four people disappeared every day.

The Republican Party, as it prepares for its convention next week has checked off item No. 1 on its housekeeping list — drafting a party platform. The document reflects the conservative views of its authors, many of whom are party activists. So don't look for any concessions to changing views among the broader public on key social issues.

Many public figures who took to Twitter and Facebook following the murder of five police officers in Dallas have faced public blowback and, in some cases, found their employers less than forgiving about inflammatory and sometimes hateful online comments.

As Venezuela unravels — with shortages of food and medicine, as well as runaway inflation — President Nicolas Maduro is increasingly unpopular. But he's still holding onto power.

"The truth in Venezuela is there is real hunger. We are hungry," says a man who has invited me into his house in the northwestern city of Maracaibo, but doesn't want his name used for fear of reprisals by the government.

The wiry man paces angrily as he speaks. It wasn't always this way, he says, showing how loose his pants are now.

Ask a typical teenage girl about the latest slang and girl crushes and you might get answers like "spilling the tea" and Taylor Swift. But at the Girl Up Leadership Summit in Washington, D.C., the answers were "intersectional feminism" — the idea that there's no one-size-fits-all definition of feminism — and U.N. climate chief Christiana Figueres.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Pages

Sandwich Monday: A Hot Dog Cookoff

Aug 26, 2013
Originally published on August 26, 2013 3:33 pm

There is still debate as to whether the hot dog evolved from lesser sandwich forms or is the work of an intelligent designer, but everyone can agree it's a marvel of simplicity. At the Gapers Block Hot Dog Cookoff earlier this summer in Chicago, though, five chefs were challenged to reinterpret the humble tube steak, and we were challenged to eat them all.

The chefs were told to "start with Vienna Beef hot dogs" and "use them in any way imaginable." Those instructions, when you think about it, are frighteningly open to interpretation.

I was hoping that someone might use the wieners to build a meat log cabin in which I could settle down and raise a family, but for the most part, the chefs stuck to the traditional form. The first one I tried was from Kuma's Corner, a beloved Chicago institution known for its burgers, which are named after metal bands (try the "Lair of the Minotaur!"). Its dog has a spicy chili, broccoli slaw and an underlying air of menace.

Next up was the entry from ManBQue, which is not the name of a cookout cannibals throw on Labor Day but of a "grilling and lifestyle organization" in Chicago. This hot dog is wrapped in Serrano-smoked bacon and topped with chicharrones. "That's a lot of different meats," I said to John, who was manning the grill.

"Yeah," John said. "We've got a family reunion in there."

As delicious and manly as these dogs were, I felt a little disappointed that no one was really deconstructing the form. I went there for Damien Hirst and I got Thomas Kinkade. As I wiped my tears with another hot dog, I came upon this, from The Haute and The Dog:

A hot dog sundae! With pulled pork roasted in Dr.Pepper! It is a completely savory taste, in a completely desserty form. Finally, there is balance in a world in which a Choco Taco exists.

As I approached my final dog, I was pretty full, but it's like the last season of Lost: Even though you're tired of it, you stick with it because you've already invested so much and you need to see how it ends, even if it ends badly with [SPOILER] unsatisfying, poorly developed, pseudoscientific religious allegory. Instead, though, my finale was a dog from Harmony Grill, which was topped with a Flamin'-Hot-Cheeto-Fried Onion, so things ended pretty well.

[The verdict: As I said above, I was hoping for more creative interpretations. A tip for chefs signing up next year: It wouldn't be hard to build a bow and arrow that shoots hot dogs into my mouth — sort of a bow and wiener. Let's make this happen.]

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.