Sun

Aug

1322:18

Doggy style

 
The unofficial World Hotdog Championship pits eight top chefs against each other to demonstrate the gastronomic potential of the humble hotdog

When readers of Danish newspaper Berlingske’s AOK website recently voted for their favourite Copenhagen street food, the award went to District Tonkin – a Vietnamese restaurant serving the best bánh mi in town. And the best meal on a budget, readers decided, could be found at Kiin Kiin Bao Bao, a Vesterbrogade restaurant specialising in traditional Taiwanese steamed buns.

It’s a sign of the times, surely, that Asian street cuisine and other exotic fast-food options have muscled out the classic hotdog – for years, the go-to snack for hungry Danes. Hundreds of pølsevogne (hotdog vans) once graced Copenhagen’s street corners – today they are reduced to mere dozens.

Stay informed! Sign up for The Murmur Newsletter

All the more reason, then, to check out the Topdog Charity event taking place at Israels Plads on August 21 during the Copenhagen Cooking and Food Festival. The unofficial World Hotdog Championship, the competition pits eight top chefs against each other to demonstrate the gastronomic potential of the humble hotdog. Indeed, participants include top yakitori chef Hideto Takeda, three-time winner of Greenland’s “chef of the year” Inunnguaq Hegelun, and South African forager Kobus van der Merwe. So there shouldn’t be a boiled sausage in sight.

READ MORE: Food Fever Fest

The rules are simple: each chef is given a classic street van and must prepare 100 “dogs”. The winner will be chosen by a jury that includes two chefs with three Michelin stars: Anne-Sophie Pic, of Maison Pic in southeast France, and Rasmus Koefoed of Copenhagen’s very own Geranium. Hungry visitors can buy vouchers to taste any of the hotdogs and pick their own favourite.

Pick up a copy of The Murmur here!

And if last year is anything to go by, the competition should be very special indeed. Hiroki Yoshitake, head chef at Sola, a Michelin-starred restaurant in Paris, made hotdogs with lobster; top Norwegian chef Knut Lake drew long lines with his grilled lamb sausages; and a team of chefs from the Danish island of Samsø, representing Kurdistan, snagged first prize with their “Middle Eastern shish dog” – lamb’s heart kebab with hummus, yoghurt, crispy garlic and spicy aubergine.

READ MORE: One dead dog please, but easy on the loose teeth

Dish of the day, though, was the “Hot Love Dog”, created by English chef Douglas McMaster and the two founders of Copenhagen’s nose-to-tail restaurant BROR. Reflecting their shared philosophy of leaving nothing to waste, the hotdog was made using bull’s testicles and topped with cherry-glazed cow’s uterus, crispy fried bull’s penis and candied rose petals. It certainly wasn’t to everyone’s taste – but it proved there’s life in the old dog yet.

This year’s Topdog Charity event takes place on Monday 21 August, from 5–7pm, in Israels Plads (with music, drinks and children’s hotdogs from 3pm). Vouchers for single hotdogs cost 100 kroner, with all proceeds going to the humanitarian charity CARE Denmark, to support its work in Laos. M

To read the PDF of the latest issue, click here!

Culture

By James Clasper

Contributing editor. @jamesclasper

Facebook comments