Photos from my trip to the Kingdom of Denmark in 2001.
Fish, Waffles and the quest for coffee.
There's something Fishy in the state of Denmark...
Herring. Lot's of herring. Also anchovy, lot's of anchovy.
Meals usually featured fish, cheese and fruit followed by sweet waffles and coffee.
Now a word about good Danish coffee.
There isn't any!
OK, let me clarify - you can buy good coffee beans and every day I enjoyed freshly brewed coffee in the homes of friends. But - go out and expect to sit at a cafe with a nice cappucino, latte, long black, short black, Vienna.... forget it! Cafes and restaurants usually serve coffee in enormous bowl-like cups and at a temperature safe enough for a baby's bath,
The quest for coffee became a mission for me and I even scoured Copenhagen from end to end - ending up at a swish cafe in the main town square and hopefully clutching a very short black.
Lukewarm - not particularly strong. Not to worry, it didn't hurt me to cut down on the caffeine intake.
Fish, glorious fish
This is the famous "5 herring" meal. Curried herring, marinated herring, fried herring, another variety of marinated herring and.... herring!
Dining a la fresco is something the Danes do at every opportunity. If they are to be believed, the weather only really allows this for a short time every year. During my month there the weather was like a Sydney winter - blue skies and 15 - 20 degrees every day.
Apparently the clement summer weather usually only lasts a week in the year. Hard to believe, I guess I was lucky!
Fresh fruit and ice cream, fine wine, and New Zealand lamb - although not necessarily consumed in that sequence!
Danes in their natural environment. At these latitudes it is daylight until 10 or 11 pm in summer.
Eating Outside the Culture
I enjoyed this delicious meal as a guest of two charming hosts Adrian and Marianne, both teachers of architecture. The main meal was imported Thai Prawns and the accompanying drink was extracted from crushed flower petals. Exquisite.
Taking my cue from W.C. Fields, I don't usually enjoy eating around children or animals but this little fellow was pretty well behaved. Eventually it was bedtime but he was overtired and didn't want to leave the party. Or something like that. I was more a fan of Mr. Spock than Dr. Spock.
Anyway he wouldn't settle down until I spotted a collection of Vivaldi Concertos. Into the CD player... Bingo! Asleep in 1 movement !
Eating Outside calorie constraints
The bakery, literally 20 metres from where I was staying - fresh Danishes for breakfast! Alas it was not to be. Like many other Danes, the baker went on summer holidays within a few days of my arrival.
I did get a regular supply of pastries though, I had to walk 40 metres to get them.
What were the Danish pastries like? The variety was perhaps not quite as wide as I'd come to expect in Australia. Or at least in the biggest city in Australia. I'd better qualify my statements here. When I say "... in Australia..." I generally mean in Sydney, in fact in the Eastern suburbs / inner city area. Not really a fair comparison given that Sydney has the same population as Denmark (about 5 million).
Anyway where was I... a yes, pastries. The pastries. Nice, good variety. Many varieties I hadn't seen before and of course when I got to the bread basket... whew!
Black bread, brown bread, wholemeal, white, sour, sweet.... the list goes on. In a month I didn't eat my way through the entire available range of pastries or breads although I gave it my best shot
A very thin dry bread covered with various seeds. Tasty too.