Smørrebrød

Smørrebrød

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Smørrebrød usually consists of a piece of buttered rye bread (rugbrød
Rugbrød
Rugbrød is a very commonly used bread in Denmark. The common rugbrød usually resembles a long brown rectangle, no more than 12 cm high, and 30–35 cm wide, although shapes and sizes may vary, as well as the ingredients...

), a dense, dark brown bread. Pålæg (literally "on-lay"), the topping, then among others can refer to commercial or homemade cold cuts, pieces of meat or fish, cheese or spreads. This daily practice is the base on which the art of the famous Danish open sandwich
Open sandwich
An open sandwich, also known as an open face/faced sandwich, Ulrich Sandwich, bread baser, or tartine, consists of a single slice of bread with one or more food items on top.- In various countries :...

, smørrebrød is created: A slice or two of pålæg is placed on the buttered bread, and then pyntet (decorated) with the right accompaniments, to create a tasty and visually appealing food item.

Bread


Bread is a very important part of the Scandinavian table. Based primarily on rugbrød, which is sour-dough rye bread. It is a dark, heavy bread which is often bought pre-sliced, in varieties from light-coloured rye, to very dark, and refined to whole grain. It forms the basis of smørrebrød, which is closely related to the Swedish smörgås.

Toppings



Traditional toppings include marinerede sild, which are pickled herrings (plain, kryddet – spiced, or karry – curried), slightly sweeter than Dutch or German herrings; thinly-sliced cheese in many varieties; sliced cucumber, tomato and boiled eggs; leverpostej, which is pork liver-paste; dozens of types of cured or processed meat in thin slices, or smoked fish such as salmon; mackerel in tomato sauce; pickled cucumber; boiled egg, and rings of red onion. Mayonnaise mixed with peas, sliced boiled asparagus and diced carrot, called italiensk salat (lit. Italian salad), remoulade or other thick sauces often top the layered open sandwich, which is usually eaten with utensils. It is custom to pass the dish of sliced breads around the table, and then to pass around each dish of toppings, and people help themselves.

Hundreds of combinations and varieties of smørrebrød are available, and some traditional examples include:
  • Dyrlægens natmad
    Dyrlægens natmad
    Dyrlægens natmad is the Danish name for a piece of smørrebrød upon which a particular selection of meats is laid....

     (Danish: Veterinarian's midnight snack) — On a piece of dark rye bread, a layer of liver paté (leverpostej
    Leverpostej
    Leverpostej , leverpostei , leverpastej , , maksapasteija or leverpastei is a "pâté" made of pork liver and lard, which is a popular spread in northern Europe...

    ), topped with a slice of salt beef (salt kød) and a slice of meat aspic
    Aspic
    Aspic is a dish in which ingredients are set into a gelatin made from a meat stock or consommé. Non-savory dishes, often made with commercial gelatin mixes without stock or consommé, are usually called gelatin salads....

     (sky). This is all decorated with raw onion
    Onion
    The onion , also known as the bulb onion, common onion and garden onion, is the most widely cultivated species of the genus Allium. The genus Allium also contains a number of other species variously referred to as onions and cultivated for food, such as the Japanese bunching onion The onion...

     rings and garden cress
    Garden cress
    Garden cress is a fast-growing, edible herb that is botanically related to watercress and mustard, sharing their peppery, tangy flavor and aroma...

    .
  • Eel
    Eel
    Eels are an order of fish, which consists of four suborders, 20 families, 111 genera and approximately 800 species. Most eels are predators...

     — Smoked eel on dark rye bread, topped with scrambled eggs and sliced radish
    Radish
    The radish is an edible root vegetable of the Brassicaceae family that was domesticated in Europe, in pre-Roman times. They are grown and consumed throughout the world. Radishes have numerous varieties, varying in size, color and duration of required cultivation time...

    es or chopped chives
    Chives
    Chives are the smallest species of the edible onions. A perennial plant, they are native to Europe, Asia and North America.. Allium schoenoprasum is the only species of Allium native to both the New and the Old World....

    .
  • Leverpostej
    Leverpostej
    Leverpostej , leverpostei , leverpastej , , maksapasteija or leverpastei is a "pâté" made of pork liver and lard, which is a popular spread in northern Europe...

     — Warm rough-chopped liverpaste served on dark rye bread, topped with bacon
    Bacon
    Bacon is a cured meat prepared from a pig. It is first cured using large quantities of salt, either in a brine or in a dry packing; the result is fresh bacon . Fresh bacon may then be further dried for weeks or months in cold air, boiled, or smoked. Fresh and dried bacon must be cooked before eating...

    , and sauteed mushroom
    Mushroom
    A mushroom is the fleshy, spore-bearing fruiting body of a fungus, typically produced above ground on soil or on its food source. The standard for the name "mushroom" is the cultivated white button mushroom, Agaricus bisporus; hence the word "mushroom" is most often applied to those fungi that...

    s.
  • Roast beef
    Roast beef
    Roast beef is a dish of beef which is roasted in an oven. Essentially prepared as a main meal, the leftovers can be and are often served within sandwiches and sometimes is used to make hash...

     — thin sliced and served on dark rye bread, topped with a portion of remoulade
    Remoulade
    Remoulade or rémoulade, invented in France, is a popular condiment in many countries. Very much like the tartar sauce of some English-speaking cultures, remoulade is often aioli- or mayonnaise-based. Although similar to tartar sauce, it is often more yellowish , often flavored with curry, and...

    , and decorated with a sprinkling of shredded horseradish
    Horseradish
    Horseradish is a perennial plant of the Brassicaceae family, which also includes mustard, wasabi, broccoli, and cabbages. The plant is probably native to south eastern Europe and the Arab World , but is popular around the world today...

     and toasted (ristet) onion.
  • Roast pork (Ribbensteg) — thin sliced and served on dark rye bread, topped with red sweet and sour cabbage
    Cabbage
    Cabbage is a popular cultivar of the species Brassica oleracea Linne of the Family Brassicaceae and is a leafy green vegetable...

    , and decorated with a slice of orange
    Orange (fruit)
    An orange—specifically, the sweet orange—is the citrus Citrus × sinensis and its fruit. It is the most commonly grown tree fruit in the world....

    .
  • Spiced meat roll (Rullepølse).
  • Tartarmad — raw beef mince with salt and pepper, served on dark rye bread, topped with raw onion rings, grated horseradish and a raw egg yolk.
  • Smoked salmon
    Smoked salmon
    Smoked salmon is a preparation of salmon, typically a fillet that has been cured and then hot or cold smoked. Due to its moderately high price, smoked salmon is considered a delicacy.-Presentation:...

     (laks) — Slices of cold smoked or cured salmon
    Cured salmon
    Cured salmon and other fish recipes have been found in many cultures stretching from the people of early to modern Scandinavia to the Native Americans....

     (gravad laks) on white bread, topped with shrimp
    Shrimp
    Shrimp are swimming, decapod crustaceans classified in the infraorder Caridea, found widely around the world in both fresh and salt water. Adult shrimp are filter feeding benthic animals living close to the bottom. They can live in schools and can swim rapidly backwards. Shrimp are an important...

     and decorated with a slice of lemon
    Lemon
    The lemon is both a small evergreen tree native to Asia, and the tree's ellipsoidal yellow fruit. The fruit is used for culinary and non-culinary purposes throughout the world – primarily for its juice, though the pulp and rind are also used, mainly in cooking and baking...

     and fresh dill
    Dill
    Dill is a perennial herb. It is the sole species of the genus Anethum, though classified by some botanists in a related genus as Peucedanum graveolens C.B.Clarke.-Growth:...

    .
  • Stjerneskud (Danish: Shooting Star) — On a base of buttered white bread, two pieces of fish
    Fish
    Fish are a paraphyletic group of organisms that consist of all gill-bearing aquatic vertebrate animals that lack limbs with digits. Included in this definition are the living hagfish, lampreys, and cartilaginous and bony fish, as well as various extinct related groups...

    : a piece of steamed white fish on one half, a piece of fried, battered plaice (rødspætte) on the other half. On top is piled a mound of shrimp, which is then decorated with a dollop of mayonnaise
    Mayonnaise
    Mayonnaise, , often abbreviated as mayo, is a sauce. It is a stable emulsion of oil, egg yolk and either vinegar or lemon juice, with many options for embellishment with other herbs and spices. Lecithin in the egg yolk is the emulsifier. Mayonnaise varies in color but is often white, cream, or pale...

    , red caviar
    Caviar
    Caviar, sometimes called black caviar, is a luxury delicacy, consisting of processed, salted, non-fertilized sturgeon roe. The roe can be "fresh" or pasteurized, the latter having much less culinary and economic value....

    , and a lemon
    Lemon
    The lemon is both a small evergreen tree native to Asia, and the tree's ellipsoidal yellow fruit. The fruit is used for culinary and non-culinary purposes throughout the world – primarily for its juice, though the pulp and rind are also used, mainly in cooking and baking...

    slice.

Literature

  • Katrine Klinken, Smørrebrød – Danish open, Thaning & Appel, 2008.
  • Ida Davidsen and Mia Davidsen, Open your heart to the Danish open – : the Davidsen dynasty and their best recipes, Lindhardt og Ringhof, 2006. ISBN 978-87-614-0400-8.
  • Inge Lotz, Danish open sandwiches, Aschehoug Fakta, 1997. ISBN 87-7512-668-0.

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