So I went to Iceland, the country not the shop, and anybody looking at my Twitter feed (@peternaldrett) a will know I got a bit obsessed about Icelandic hot dogs. So I thought I’d write a blog about them!
Go to a posh restaurant in Reykjavik and you’ll be faced with a menu that features fish, shark fin, fish, horse, puffin, fish, whale, fish and fish. It may be that you don’t find anything to tempt you, and given that each dish is likely to set you back at least £20 each, you may need to look for alternatives
Enter the hot dog.
Claimed by some to be the National dish in Iceland and costing just a couple of pounds, getting to grips with hot dog culture is rewarding on your taste buds and your wallet. And these are not hot dogs as we know them, Jim. There are some key differences.
Firstly the bread comes a little toasty, adding to a more crunchy experience. You’ll also notice more crunch in your onions because as well as some cooked ones there are also raw onions in there.
Don’t expect it to be flooded in ketchup either – remoulade is the covering of choice in the world’s most northerly capital. And so to the hot dog itself, which is made from lamb instead of pork. There are lots of sheep on Iceland but pigs are not something they get involved in. All in all, it’s a delicious experience.
But where to start? In the capital, head to Bæjarins Beztu Pylsur – a small hot dog stand with a big reputation that has many fans, including Bill Clinton.
Travelling around the whole of Iceland on Route 1? Make sure you call in at the roadside hot dog take away at Selfoss and get spiced up fries with your order. Then call in Hofn, where Hafnarbúðin will serve up tasty dogs with sublime liquorice milkshakes.
The champion of the Icelandic hot dog though is the stand in the middle of Akureyri. Always popular and delivering a wide range of tasty dogs, you may be tempted by the classic but try adding peppers for the Volcanic Dog or pepperoni for the pizza Dog.
Wherever you get to grips with Iceland hot dog culture, you’re sure never to look at a sausage in a bun in quite the same way again.