Seriously Scandinavian has undergone extensive plastic surgery and a name change to Scandinavian Street Food. From now on I'll be doing weekly excursions into the vast fast food culture of Scandinavia and let you know what's going on in the streets of the cold north. From hot dogs to fried herring, from lompe and lefse to smørrebrød and beef sandwiches—welcome to Scandinavian Street Food!
This week, I'm sticking to the Danish dogs I first talked about a few weeks ago. But this time around, let's move away from the traditional red sausages and on to real hot dogs: logs of meat shoved into a bun and topped with various good stuff. Because even if the red sausage (with bread served on the side) is the king of Danish sausages, most Danes also have a very soft spot for a classic hot dog. And there are a few places where the hot dog is taken very seriously.
The Andersen hot dog stand, for instance. Situated in the palatial Nimb (a crazy Taj Mahal copy in the world famous Tivoli in downtown Copenhagen) is the Japan-based faux-Danish bakery franchise Andersen Bakery. And even if I'm personally not a huge fan of standardized international mega-bakeries, there's a small—very small—and unpretentious corner of this place that has fast food lovers making pilgrimages from all over the country: The Hot Dog Corner.
Here, for $9 USD you can choose between a couple of different kinds of hot dogs, all sourced locally and artisanal. I have two favorites. The Grand Danois is a classic pork sausage packed with meat flavor, and grilled with a perfectly crispy outside and juicy inside. The Bulldog, on the other hand, is made from halal veal and beef and has a fiery, slight Asian-inspired flavor from being seasoned with cumin, garlic, and aniseed. It's a smaller, darker dog with just a little bit of a bite (which confirms the theory that the smaller the dog, the more aggressive it is).
The bread is of course baked in the Andersen Bakery, and the ketchup is organic and brought in specially from a butcher in Holbæk. The remoulade and mustard is homemade, as well as the lovely crispy onions and cucumber salad. Everything is organic.
It's quite expensive to pay nine bucks for a hot dog, but considering the sheer size of these dogs, you absolutely get your money's worth. Taste-wise, there's no doubt in my mind that these hot dogs are among the best in Scandinavia. With all the ingredients, from dog to dough, made locally by people who actually care about the final product, I will have a very hard time going back to regular hot dogs in the future.
...Or at least for a few weeks.