I was first introduced to the magic of the Danish smørrebrød by way of Leif Hedendal at a Meatpaper event last year. Shortly after, Lynda of Taste Food posted one of her recipes for the same. And now, on the cusp of spring, nothing seems more appropriate than a light, architectural sandwich that works equally well as a lunch or a party snack. Smørrebrød translates from the Danish for butter and bread. But there is no butter here, because it seems a little redundant when there is already a sprightly base of horseradish-infused ricotta hiding out beneath thin slices of peppery radish and tart green apple. Topped with a generous helping of smoked salmon and a delicate sliver of lemon and finished with a spray of fresh dill, the sandwich is sturdy enough to fill your belly but the takeaway is its light, refreshing interplay of sweet, tart, salty and crunchy flavors.
SMØRREBRØD: SALMON, RADISH AND APPLE OPEN-FACED SANDWICH
Yield: about 12 small sandwiches
4-6 slices rye bread (I’m fond of German rye bread that’s thinly sliced, found in health food stores)
4 ounces smoked salmon
1 small bunch radishes
1 tart green apple
1/2 cup ricotta, drained
2 tablespoons horseradish
1 tablespoon lemon juice
salt + pepper to taste
For appetizers, slice the rye bread into thirds. For a more substantial serving, slice the bread in half.
First, combine the ricotta, horseradish and lemon juice and mix together with a fork. Add a little salt to taste if needed.
Using a mandoline or sharp knife, very thinly slice the apples, radishes and lemon.
Spread a generous layer of the ricotta on the bread. Add one slice apple, followed by radish, salmon, and then lemon. (You can eat the lemon!) Crack some black pepper over the sandwich and top with a sprig of dill. Serve immediately.