Hot Dogs in Copenhagen, Denmark

The humble hotdog is a Danish culinary tradition – there are hotdog stalls located on key intersections and transit points all across Copenhagen (and the whole country!). It’s not uncommon for people to quickly grab a hotdog to eat while waiting for the bus, or just as a quick snack to satiate hunger pangs before heading out for a late dinner.

Given that Copenhagen is very expensive for a traveller who’s become accustomed to the prices in countries like Portugal, Spain and Germany, hotdogs became our food of choice when out and about. Most days we would pack a light lunch (sandwiches and a piece of fruit), and supplement our meals with a hotdog in the afternoon. All in all, we ended up having six hot dogs during our stay in Copenhagen.


Our first dog was a standard hot dog topped with both fresh and fried onions, pickles and different sauces from the Helle’s Poelser hotdog stall at Norreport station while we waited for our bus back to our Airbnb apartment in Norrebro.

The most popular hotdog sauces are ketchup, mustard and remoulade – and this seems to be a standard topping for hotdogs everywhere. Interestingly, the hotdog bun itself is only about half the length of the sausage, so it makes for particularly treacherous eating as you run the risk of losing the structural integrity of the dog and spilling pickles and onions all over yourself.


Our second hotdog was a ‘French hotdog’, or a Fransk Hotdog, from a stall outside Christianshavn metro station. The French dog is very simple compared to the usual Danish dogs with their elaborate toppings, consisting of a simple sausage with a squirt of mustard stuck into a warmed and toasted bun.


Our third dog was a ristet hotdog from Mikey’s Corner in our local area of Norrebro, located at one of the major intersections near the cemetery. This was very similar to the first hotdog that we ordered, but with what seemed to be a slimmer and longer sausage, and fewer toppings. Again, it was served in a tiny bun.

This was when we started to realise that not all hotdogs are made equal. While it seems that a lot of the hotdogs are supplied by one of a handful of Danish suppliers so there’s consistency in that sense, there’s also many different ways that stalls can distinguish themselves – perhaps thinner, sweeter pickles, or crispier fried onions. In this case, the pickles were definitely sweeter and not as deliciously tangy and sour as the pickles from our first hot dog.


We became a little more adventurous with our fourth hotdog from Hos Tina & Michael, a stall located on the plaza near the entrance to Kongens Nytorv metro station. We ordered the Kaempe hotdog with a svob sausage – where the sausage is wrapped with bacon before being grilled. This was definitely an indulgence and a half, with the deliciously salty and savoury bacon drippings soaking into the bun. The sausage was a lot plumper, and seemed a lot meatier than the other sausages – this is more of an Aussie barbeque sausage, rather than a frankfurt.


Our second-to-last hotdog in Copenhagen was from John’s Hotdog Deli outside Copenhagen Central station. John’s Deli is one of the brightest lights of the Copenhagen hotdog scene, with John apparently one of the most adventurous experimenters in the hotdog industry – while he’ll do all the standards, he’ll also offer seasonal specials like the “Jule/Christmas Hotdog” we saw on offer. We went for something plain and simple though – another French hotdog.


With 40 Danish kroner left in my wallet as we waited at Copenhagen airport for our flight to Alesund in Norway, we thought we might as well have one last hotdog to use up our Danish currency. We found a Steff Houlberg hotdog stand in one of the terminals and ordered the ‘big and spicy hotdog’ which was essentially a fat chorizo-style sausage served in a hotdog. It still used the same small bun, and had the same toppings, but with a different sausage. This was actually quite delicious and juicy – I got surprised with my first bite into the hotdog as spicy sausage juices spurted everywhere!

So there you have it – six different hotdogs in Copenhagen. It really is a Danish tradition, so I encourage you to have a hotdog (or six!) if you visit Copenhagen – you can go to almost any hotdog stand and get a pretty delicious dog to eat. If you can’t wait until you get into the city, you can even have a hotdog as soon as you land at the airport – there’s a stand at the baggage carousel area as well, so have a hotdog as you wait for your luggage to come out!

Chanoy Honeymoon: Sevilla and Granada, Spain, October 2015

Note – photo gallery at the bottom of this post.

We had such little time in Sevilla and Granada (only three nights total!) that I feel almost embarrassed in writing this entry. There’s so much more to see and explore in the Andalusia region of Spain that we certainly barely even touched even half of what these cities have to offer. That I think, would have to wait until a future trip – perhaps a month-long driving excursion across southern Spain?

I loved our stay in these cities, more so than our stay in Madrid. Part of this was increased confidence in our ability to make ourselves understood in our limited Spanish! We’d gotten comfortable with the idea of ordering tapas for meals, and had a great meal at Duo Tapas in Seville, a modern tapas restaurant recommended by our Airbnb host. We also had a more traditional tapas meal in the centre of town (photos in the below gallery) which I can’t give a glowing review of – I think I prefer modern interpretations of tapas more so than the traditional!

In Granada, we lucked out by finding some genuine nun cookies, and finished with a simple dinner at a local restaurant – salad and baked potato. Interestingly, many of the restaurants in Granada seem to be Middle Eastern or North African in nature – a reflection perhaps on the city’s long history of Muslim (I hesitate to use the word Moorish, which I’m uncomfortable with!) influence.

This influence can be seen throughout both cities, not just in the restaurants available but also in the architecture and design. The Alhambra in Granada is of course the famous example of royal palaces in the Arabic style in Spain, but as I was unable to buy tickets to enter (note to others – if you want to go, buy your tickets online weeks in advance, not three days before!), we settled for going to the Alcazar in Seville which is still impressive but not on the same scale.

The tiling on the streets and buildings, the design of buildings around a central courtyard – all these are remnants of the Muslim influence and rule of this area dating back almost a millennium. Visiting Sevilla and Granada is almost what I would imagine visiting Morocco to be like – but I’ll let you know for sure after February when we’ve been to Morocco!

One particular highlight for me was visiting the Cathedral and Royal Tombs in Granada. I’d read a lot about Isabella of Castile and Fernando of Aragon in the past, initially prompted by my interest in the English Tudors and Katharine of Aragon, their daughter. To see the actual effigies, tombs, and lead coffins of these two great, though religiously fanatical and absolutely xenophobic and prejudiced, rulers was quite a thrill.

So in summary, Sevilla and Granada have a bit to offer everyone. For the history nuts like me – fantastic insights into the past of both Arabic and Catholic rulers. For those who like to eat – some innovative modern tapas restaurants. For those who love to party – a late night bar and restaurant drinking culture, with some bars featuring signature flamenco shows that don’t start until midnight! I can’t wait to return to Andalusia in the future for a longer stay.

Finding Nun Cookies in Granada, Spain

My quest for ‘nun cookies’ first started in Madrid, where K and I spent a few hours trying to find the hidden convent where cloistered nuns sell home-made sweets to the public through a turntable. We were out of luck – once we managed to find the convent, there was a sign posted on the door announcing that they were sold out and wouldn’t have more sweets for a few days.


Imagine my delight when we stumbled across a nondescript sign next to the Convento de San Bernardo on Granada’s famous Carrera del Darro, pointing up the small alleyway of Calle Gloria, stating “sweet sales”. Heading to number 2 Calle Gloria, we then saw this sign posted next to the doorway – vente de patisseries, sweets sale.


Finally, I was going to get my nun cookies! But first, I wanted to make sure that I was ordering the right thing, and luckily they had information pinned up on the door of the sales turntable. For the record, you can buy (in any quantity you want):

  • Rosquitos de anis (10 Euro/kilo)
  • Pastas de almendra (12 Euro/kilo)
  • Pasta de the (12 Euro/kilo)
  • Hojaldrines (10 Euro/kilo)
  • Nevaditas (16 Euro/kilo)
  • Plum cake (4.60 Euro per unit)

Or, if you’re not sure about any of the above, you can do what we did and just buy the ‘Cajas surtidas’, or a mixed assortment. A half kilo will set you back 6.50 Euro, or a full kilo will set you back 13 Euro. They also sell home-made wines, but I decided to give that a miss!


To order your cookies, you need to:

  1. Ring the nearby bell, and wait for an answer
  2. When someone answers, say “Quiero comprar dulces” (I want to buy candy)
  3. Wait until a Sister comes to the turntable and tell her what you want

This is the interesting part – while the Sisters are supposed to cloistered and you’re not supposed to see them, the Sister who came to the turntable for me was very interested in opening up a little window to see who I was, and what I wanted. I’ve been told that they won’t do that if it’s a man who’s buying the candy, but as I was the one buying (K made sure to wait outside so there wouldn’t be any awkward situations), I think the Sister wanted to see who was speaking Spanish so terribly!


After I put in my order (half a kilo of assorted candy/cookies), the Sister went away briefly to pack up my order before putting it through the turntable for me. The box was marked with the title the Monastero de San Bernardo, rather than Convento de San Bernardo, as I believe that the monks and the nuns live in the same set of buildings, but separated.


And here we have the assorted cookies! K particularly liked the anise-flavoured cookies, but I liked the powdered-sugar hojaldrines which was particularly delicious with its layers of pastry.

There’s may be some ethical issues at play here – K asked me whether I was comfortable spending money towards the Catholic Church when we’re both staunch atheists. It did make me stop and think, and I decided that I could be comfortable with it as the money went towards the expenses of cloistered nuns, as opposed to directly to the coffers of the Catholic Church with the aim of spreading religious beliefs.

So there you have it – unique Spanish treats, made for you by (not quite) cloistered nuns! If you miss out on the nun cookies in a big city like Madrid, you can always go to Granada for them instead.

The Convento de San Bernardo is located at 2 Calle Gloria, Granada.