When I teach smørrebrød workshops or host the occasional catering event featuring a selection of open Nordic sandwiches, this classic Roast Beef Smørrebrød with Danish Remoulade and Crispy Shallots is almost always the favorite. There's just something about the combination of dense rye, savory roast beef and exotic Danish remoulade that is downright magical. Add that shower of Crispy Fried Shallots on top and you've got yourself an easy to assemble, show-stopper of a sandwich.
Let's take a moment to discuss the anatomy of a properly assembled Nordic open sandwich, shall we? I walk through this in my post, The Basics of Smørrebrød, but it's worth a little refresher I think before you go forth and create your own sandwiches.
Start with Dense Rye Bread
This Danish rye bread is called rugbrød and it is what generally forms the base of smørrebrød. Every now and then you'll see a Nordic open sandwich that calls for a toasted white sourdough or country loaf, but dense, dark rugbrød is the norm. Rugbrød is often made with a sourdough starter, but I have an easy and delicious overnight recipe for rugbrød that uses instant yeast and only easy-to-find ingredients. It's one of the most popular recipes here on the site and surprisingly authentic for how simple it is.
A Generous Slather of Good Butter
Most smørrebrød begins with a layer of good-quality, salted butter. I use a European-style butter for mine (which contains a higher content of butterfat than its American counterpart). For extra credit you might want to seek out a Scandinavian butter, such as Lurpak or Finlandia. Both are excellent. Not only does butter impart richness and flavor, it also acts as a barrier between the bread and the ingredients on top and gives the lettuce something to adhere to.
A Layer of Greens
The greens not only bring a crisp freshness to your sandwich, they also provide color and visual appeal, an important part of smørrebrød.
Artfully Arranged Toppings
Finally, our toppings become the star of the show, bringing everything together. Since the open sandwich has no top, take a little time to arrange your toppings in a visually appealing fashion. No one needs you to be Picasso here, but a little attention to the visual appeal of your smørrebrød makes for a beautiful presentation. And it's a fun opportunity to bring some creativity to your food which is always welcome!
Alright. I think we've covered the basics. Now go grab that recipe for Easy Overnight Rugbrød and make this tasty Roast Beef Smørrebrød with Danish Remoulade and Crispy Shallots! It's a hands-down favorite in my experience. And let me know if you give it a try in the comments below! I always love hearing from you. Looking for more smørrebrød ideas? I've got you covered:
- New Potato Smørrebrød with Garlic Aioli and Crispy Shallots
- Italian Salad and Ham Smørrebrød
- Balsamic-Glazed Mushroom Smørrebrød with Garlicky White Bean Puree (vegan)
- Easy Garden Tomato Smørrebrød
- Chickpea Salad Smørrebrød
- Caramelized Leek and Snap Pea Salad Smørrebrød
- Smoked Salmon and Fennel Salad Smørrebrød
- Roasted Salmon Smørrebrød with Creamy Mustard Dill Sauce and Pickled Beets
- Beet and Celery Root Cake Smørrebrød with Herbed Yogurt Sauce
- Roasted Butternut Squash Smørrebrød with Spicy Harissa Mayo and Pepitas
Roast Beef Smørrebrød with Danish Remoulade and Crispy Shallots
For the Smørrebrød:
- 4 thin slices dense rye bread such as rugbrød
- Butter for spreading preferably salted
- A handful or two of baby arugula leaves or other small lettuces
- 8-10 slices roast beef thinly sliced
- Danish Remoulade recipe follows
- Crispy Fried Shallots or store bought cripsy onions, such as the Lars brand
For the Danish Remoulade:
- ½ cup prepared mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons skyr or greek yogurt
- 1 heaping teaspoon dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon capers coarsely chopped
- 2 tablespoons dill pickles finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped shallot
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- ¾ teaspoon curry powder
- Prepare the Danish Remoulade: Combine ingredients together in a small bowl. Stir until incorporated.
- Assemble the Smørrebrød: Transfer bread slices to a clean work surface. Butter the bread. Top each slice with a handful of lettuce and a couple of slices of roast beef. Spoon a generous dollop of the Danish Remoulade on top. Sprinkle with Crispy Fried Shallots. Serve.
Oh my this is delicious! It’s my new go-to lunch while working from home. Once the remoulade is made (and it has kept well in the fridge for me for a week) it takes 5 mins. to prepare. I used store-bought fried onions so that saved me some prep time, too. We swapped out the roast beef for salmon cakes one night and that was divine. So many directions to take smørrebrød. Can’t wait to try your other versions!
Thanks so much for your comment! I'm so glad you enjoyed the recipe. That remoulade is really something special, isn't it? I LOVE it and will put it on just about anything! I love your salmon cake idea and will be trying that soon for sure! Can't wait to hear what other smørrebrød you try. They are all delicious! Thanks again for taking the time to leave me your feedback. It really means a lot.