What Makes Danish Hot Dogs So Unique?

Hot dogs and sausages in all their many forms are a summertime staple. We love them at ball games, at backyard barbecues, and cooking them over an open campfire. Whether you make them into a classic chili dog or something more unique with jalapeno relish and fried pickles, we're happy to take a bite! The National Hot Dog and Sausage Council shares that sausages even make a cameo in Homer's epic poem "The Odyssey." While Germany generally gets the nod for creating the frankfurter (via the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council), there are many variations of this food that have become a culinary staple around the world, including in the likes of Argentina, South Africa, Norway, and Denmark (via Thrillist). 

In fact, Denmark's hot dogs are quite unique. While this country is known for many things — the incredible soccer player Christian Ericksen (via ESPN), fairytale spinner Hans Christian Andersen (via Britannica), and having more pigs than humans (per the Columbus Dispatch) — it's their hot dogs that have us talking. Denmark is home to the famed rødpølser, or red hot dogs, that are sold on the streets of Copenhagen (per Eat Your World), and these hot dogs are quite different from those you might find at a cart on the corner of 5th and 37th in New York City. 

They're bright red

What makes this hot dog so different from those in the United States?  As Eat Your World explains, rødpølser are so memorable because of its bright red color, along with its long, thin appearance. But their outward features are just the beginning of what makes this hot dog stand out. TasteAtlas adds that the Danish smoke their pølser using beechwood and enhance the flavor even more so with the use of nutmeg, allspice, and cardamom. So when an eater sinks his or her teeth into this local favorite, their taste buds are going to have quite the experience. Additionally, Danish street vendors add even more flavor to their pølser by cooking them in broth rather than plain water.

Nordic Food & Living notes that the Danish hot dog can be dressed up with condiments, as well. It is often served up with remoulade (a savory mayo-based sauce), pickles, and raw or French-fried onions. These are definitely beloved because as Itinari points out, 100 million rødpølser are sold each year.