• Karine Wlasichuk

Copenhagen at Home: Open-Faced Fried Shrimp Sandwich with Parlsey Hummus

Ever been to Copenhagen? Well, you're about to.

These open-face sandwiches are actually a staple in the Danish capital, which you can find in stands at fancy farmer's markets (who am I kidding, everything there is fancy and utterly photogenic), adorned with fresh oyster bars and a multitude of herbs and flower buckets ,or in malls- however they do not have tacky malls like in North America, rather Magasin, which is situated across from the Opera House and near the colourful docks you've all seen on postcards (Nyhavn). Can you tell I'd rather be living there? What if I told you I almost did? Indeed, my boyfriend is a København native and we went back together a few years back so he could interview for jobs and look at the housing market. Ah, I could write to you from a waterfront condo next to a church made entirely of marble and Michelin Star restaurants, and instead, I am near a monstrosity of a highway in Montreal. But you know what? Everything happens for a reason (I think!?). I am grateful my sister and parents get to live near my daughter. But to be fair, that is my only consolation. So let's discuss the popular meal the Danes get to enjoy while I recreate it here, as I, you know, DO NOT LIVE THERE. I get a tad dramatic here and there: he did not like the work environment over there and Montreal has been great to me for the past decade, it's simply time for a change. We shall see!

In the lock-down spirit, here is another interesting fact about the open-face sandwich I decided to make today (which again, the idea consists of a million different pairing opportunities) is it is mainly created out of the freezer, pantry cans, and one fresh ingredient: arugula. Yes my friends, you've heard it here first:

Living off of your freezer and pantry contents does not have to be too far-off from gourmet food.

So in this article, do enjoy travel pictures from my few visits there as well as ideas on how to impress your guests next time they visit (seriously when?) with this Danish specialty. And yes, if you saw my story highlight on Instagram, this is also where I had the best sweet potato pizza in my life, which I do not dare to recreate. I paired the latter with a nice local artisan ale of which name I do not recall (if you go the commercial route: Carlsberg if you want to be a true tourist or Tuborg if you want to be an even bigger one).

I wish I could go back and shoot pictures of the endless fancy toast displays , each version, and recreate them later, but this is one of the many versions I could think of while looking into my freezer and pantry contents! To be fair, I was completely focused on the architecture and seaside photography each time I stayed in this city.

Okay here we go.

You will need,

Shrimps (10-15 small ones in this case, but I would've gone for fresh jumbo if I had the option that day!)

Cornstarch (enough to coat your shrimps and toss around)

Black pepper

Sea salt

Parsley (a generous handful)

Chickpeas (1 can, drained)

Arugula (4+ cups)

Balsamic vinegar (mine was honey-infused, 3 tbsp)

Wholewheat toasts (4)

Olive oil (5 tbsp)

Lemon juice (4 tbsp)

Green onions (2, thinly sliced)

Cucumber (1 small, ever-so-thinly sliced)

Garlic (1 clove, minced)

Fun alternatives and additions: try beet hummus, fresh lemon and lime zest for freshness and Tabasco/chili oil drops!

A few simple steps,

1. Start by making the hummus: in a blender, blend parsley, chickpeas, lemon juice, 4 tbsp of olive oil, garlic, as well as sea salt and pepper to taste. You can add oil as you go if you mix and find the consistency too chunky for your blender (it all depends on your tools).

2. In a bowl, combine shrimps and cornstarch. In a skillet over medium heat, toss coated shrimps with a few generous drops of olive oil. Flip them twice. In order to fry anything, you typically need at least an inch of heated oil in your pan, but these shrimps were small and ready in minutes. Remove from heat when they are pink and crispy (use photos as reference).

3. In a bowl, combine arugula, sea salt, black pepper, olive oil and balsamic vinegar of your choice. Add chopped cucumber and most of your sliced green onions. Toss until evenly coated.

4. Toast as many slices of bread as desired and cover them with a layer of the parsley hummus. Add a handful of the arugula mix, a few fried shrimps and more green onions and black pepper if desired.

5. Enjoy! Google 'bon appétit' in Danish for me?

And now, as I have discussed this city a ton, a few *thirty* pictures of my last visits there. Some from my story highlight on Instagram, with a debatable pixel quality but full of love- and some I shot on a rainy day and enjoyed over-editing, yay! I do hope you make your way there someday, and while you admire the impeccable architecture, bicycle-friendly streets and modern art pieces, thank me for talking about a sandwich.

And the sunny story highlights, shots 1 to 6789:

Could've brushed my hair, which is my first thought when I review most pictures, but it was a long touristy day filled with local ales and it was fantastic. This shot was taken in Tivoli, a historical amusement park filled with beautiful gardens and art- and pop corn, candies, cotton candy, etc etc.