Have you ever had Smoked Herring?

One of the the summer must “to do’s” in Denmark is to travel to the island of Bornholm. Bornholm is located in the Baltic Sea, to the east of Zealand and south of Sweden.  Bornholm has a rich history, famous buildings such as Hammershus and noted for its smoked fish items.  We thought to focus on Bornholm’s famous smoked houses (røgerier) and smoke herring dishes. 

 Trivia: Bornholm is also called “The Sunshine Island” among the Danes.

A visit to a smokehouse is a must and a true taste of Bornholm.  

Traditional fishing villages were developed around the waters of Bornholm and fished for herring.  Fisherman’s cottages have attached smokehouses (røgerier). When driving around Bornholm you will see see smokehouses (røgerier) with their traditional chimneys.  These smokehouses (røgerier) are where fish or meats are cured with smoke.   Now a days, a restaurant and a shop are attached to the smokehouse (røgerier) too

How do these smokehouses smoke the herring?
Smoking at the Bornholmian smokehouses (røgerier) is done by hanging herrings on grills or spits over alder wood. The herring are placed in a large open chimney. The main rule of smoking is that there must only be embers.  So, smoking is a constant monitoring process.  

Below are a couple of traditional Bornholm Smoked Herring dishes.

Omelette with Smoked Herrings

 Local old country dish from the rocky isle of Bornholm


-8 eggs
-10 tablespoons
of whipping
a little bit of water 

-10 grams butter
-4 pieces of smoked  

Beat the 8 eggs thoroughly. Blend in water and whipping cream. Melt butter in the frying pan. Pour in egg mixture into the frying pan. Mixture should set immediately at edges. 

Carefully push cooked portions at edges toward center so uncooked portions can reach the hot  pan surface.  You might need to tilt and move the pan.  Continue until the egg is set and will not flow. Place the smoked herrings on the surface of the omelette. Place a lid over the pan.  This is just to warm up the smoked herring. Garnish with tomatoes, radishes and chives and a slice of rye bread.  

Suggested Drinks: 
Tuborg Beer or Danish Schnapps. 

Suggested table setting: 
– Royal Copenhagen Princess pattern
Suggested Cutlery:
George Jensen Vivianna, Steel matte
Suggested glassware:

BornholmTrivia: Did you kow that inhabitants from Bornholm speak bornholmsk, which is officially a dialect of Danish?

Other Danish lunches from the Island 
of Bornholm include Fishcaske, salmon, cod, halibut, smoked mackerel and eel, trout, prawns and other smoked products.

 Sol over Gudhjem

A traditional Bornhomian dish is the “Sol over Gudhjem” or in translation ‘sun over Gudhjem’


-1 smoked herring
-1 raw egg yolk 
-several sliced radishes
-handful of chopped chives

-1 slice of rugbrød (Danish rye bread
butter for rugbrød 


Butter a slice of rugbrød.  Place smoked herring on the rugbrød,  Add one raw egg yolk (the “sun”) on top of the herring. Garnish with sliced radishes and chopped chives. Enjoy the Danish open sandwich called Sol over Gudhjem.

Suggested Drinks:
Danish Schnapps or a Tuborg beer.

Suggested table setting:
– Royal Copenhagen Blue Fluted Mega
Suggested cutlery:
– George Jensen Mitra, steel matte
Suggested glassware:


Danes flock to Bornholm every summer to vacation. There are a vareity of easy ways to get to Bornholm.

  • you can fly to Bornholm in just 35 minutes from the mainland.  
  • you can travel from Ystad in Sweden in just 1 hour and 20 minutes
  •  you can get from Copenhagen by car, bus or train in 2 1/2 hour.  

Did you know that foods have been smoked by humans throughout history and is one of the oldest preservation menthods? Originally this was done as a preservative. In more recent times smoking of fish is generally done for the unique taste and flavour imparted by the smoking process.

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