Tag Archives: danish

Scandinavian Cheese: A Handy Guide

March 9, 2017 | Leave a comment

The Essential Guide to Scandi Cheese – Part 1

We first posted this no less than four years ago, and considering how much we love cheese it is due a re-visit – we consider it our duty to share the with you the wonders of Scandinavian cheese. Over the next two weeks we’ll introduce six of our favourite cheeses.

To kick off we will give you a brief introduction to the many faces of Scandinavian cheese – because let’s be frank – Scandinavian cheese doesn’t have a very sexy reputation (with names like ‘Old Ole and ‘Old Cheese’ we really don’t get why).

Many of us have memories of sitting in a field on a summer’s day eating crusty French bread and sharing a kilo of creamy Brie (also French). In fact, some of us would like nothing more than to spend most of our days doing just that, had it not been for the eventual need to be moved around by a pick-up truck.

Fewer people have such glorious thoughts when thinking about Scandinavian cheese – in fact, most people associate Scandinavian cheese with Eurovision. The exception is those – very few – of us who know just how many amazing cheeses actually come from our northern corner of the world.

Cheese has been made in Scandinavia since the days of old Harold Bluetooth, and the vikings reportedly had a diet rich in milk, butter and cheese – and it was thought to be a sexual stimulant.

Here’s a brief introduction to some of the more famous Scandinavian cheeses.

Gamalost Scandinavian Cheese

1. Gammelost (Old cheese)
A recipe dating back to the Viking times, ‘Old cheese’ needed very little help to mature. Most people say both taste and smell resembles something that has spent a few months inside a sweaty old sock. As you know, nothing pleases a true tyrophile more than a slice of stinky old sock. Admittedly, perhaps due to the taste, younger Norwegians are falling out of love with it, even if it is does have the nickname of Norwegian Viagra.

Danablu Scandinavian Cheese

2. Danablu (Danish Blue)
We had to include this as it is the most popular Danish export cheese and it is a darn fine cheese. Invented originally to emulate Roquefort, and quickly making its own mark on the cheese scene, Danablu has a sharp, salty note and is excellent served on just about any kind of bread. Swedes tend to love blue cheese on ginger biscuits (we say don’t argue with anyone who invented Billy bookcases, Volvos and the zipper) – and the rest of us agree. A match made in cheese-heaven.

Brown cheese - Scandinavian Cheese

3. Brunost (Brown cheese)
Comes in many different varieties: the two best known are the Gudbrandsdalen (cow and goat) and Ekte Gjeitost (pure goat); the latter is the connoisseur’s choice

Okay, so it’s an acquired taste, but, vasterbottenon average, Norwegians eat about 4 kilos each of this stuff a year so there must be something to it. It’s as Norwegian as trolls and fjords. It looks a bit like a block of plasticine, tastes a bit like caramel and is enjoyed on its own, on open sandwiches or with freshly baked waffles: all you need then is a patterned jumper and people will soon start calling you Håkon.

4. Rygeost (smoked cheese)
A very Danish invention that is never exported due to its very short shelf life. Unmatured, smoked cheese made from buttermilk and milk and turned in less than 24 hours, after which it is smoked very quickly over a mixture of straw and nettle and topped with caraway seeds. This cheese is simply amazing, light and divine eaten on a piece of rye bread. Resembles a firm ricotta in texture.

Vasterbottensost Scandinavian Cheese (1)

5. Västerbotten
If ABBA is the queen of cheese, Västerbotten is the king. A firm, kinda crumbly, aged Swedish cheese not unlike parmesan in smell but with immense flavour and character. This cheese is a welcome addition to any cheeseboard and is also a partner to any crayfish party. Can also be used to make the excellent Västerbotten pie.

hushallsost - scandinavian cheese

6. Hushållsost
A cheese that has a name that translates as “household cheese” sounds like it belongs on a value shelf in a corner shop in Hackney, but it is actually an excellent cheese. Mild, creamy and full of small holes, this cheese is usually a big hit with the younger generation. Hushållsost is one of six Swedish food products with a so-called TSG protection (only one other cheese, Svecia, also holds this distinction). Taste wise it is unoffensive and buttery – a good all-rounder.

Gamle Ole Scandinavian cheese (2)

7. Gamle Ole (Old Ole)
A sliceable mature Danish cheese, this baby stinks. Oh yes. Don’t touch it too much or your fingers will honk all day. The taste, however, is mellower and really lush. Also known in Denmark as Danbo 45, there are many varieties in the same vein: ‘Sorte Sara’ is another good version, popular in Norway.

Prastost Scandinavian cheese (1)

8. Prästost (Priest cheese)
Sweden’s most popular cheese. It was given its name because the farmers at the time it was invented could pay their church taxes in dairy products. Prästost comes in many varieties, from the mild to the mature and flavoured with anything from vodka to whisky.

Squeaky Cheese Scandianvian Cheese

9. Leipäjuusto (also known as “squeaky cheese”)
This is a fresh young cheese from Finland. The milk is curdled and set into a flat round shape, then baked. In the olden days it was dried for months and people put it on the fire to re-activate it. The name comes from the sound it makes when you bite into it. The taste is not unlike feta. Hugely popular – very difficult to export due to its fragile nature.

Prawn cheese - Scandinavian cheese

10. Rejeost (Prawn cheese)
For some reason, spreadable prawn cheese (ideally in a tube) is immensely popular across all of Scandinavia. Not really a great cheese from a connoisseur’s point of view, but surely any product that manages to combine cheese and prawns and make it taste good needs a mention. If cheese and prawn can be coupled in peaceful harmony, then there’s hope for world peace.

For all our cheeses, click here.

WIN a Mega Scandi Easter Egg

March 7, 2017 | Leave a comment

WIN a Mega Scandi Easter Egg

As we find ourselves in the deepest, lagom-est lent – we dream about all the sweets we’ll be eating once Easter is here (by Easter, we mean this Saturday.  We have to quality check the sweets well ahead of time, you know).

Scandis are big on Easter. It is a reason to get together, be merry, enjoy some outdoors – or indoors – activities, and gather round a big table filled to the brim with all things nice and decorated with little deformed bright yellow chickens. And of course, munch away on your well deserved Easter egg after lent.

Easter egg chicken decorations

We think our Easter eggs are pretty epic – and so we introduce our annual ‘win a massive Easter egg competition‘. Yay! That’s right, you can win a 23cm diameter Easter egg chock full of our favourite Easter sweets and treats.

Fancy winning? Simply answer the easy question below;

Which colour is usually associated with Easter?

A.) Bright green

B.) Pink

C.) Yellow

Send your answer by email to iloveherring@scandikitchen.co.uk before Tuesday 28th March 2017 at midday. One main winner, getting a big ScandiKitchen Easter egg, will be drawn from all correct entries.

The usual rules apply. UK residents only. No cheating. One main winner. No alternative prize and no cash alternative.

Remoulade – King of the Cupboard

January 26, 2017 | Leave a comment

Danish Remoulade – An Introduction

Remoulade is usually being credited the French, but we think the Danes deserve most of the credit for the everyday version (don’t tell the French, s’il vous plaît). The everyday version is the kind you keep on hand for any piece of breaded and fried fish, for topping your hot dogs, burgers, or open sandwiches in need of some extra oomph. Try mixing it with diced chicken and apple for a lovely sandwich topper.

If you haven’t tried it, let us explain the wonders of this fancy-sounding sauce. Pale yellow in colour, with a mild flavour combining sweet, tangy, spicy and savoury. Often containing finely minced pickles, cabbage, mustard and spices – it is a prime example of something bigger than the sum of its parts that is hard to explain properly. If you have ever had a British fish & chips – it is a milder, creamier  and altogether more delicious alternative to the tartar sauce that often comes with it.

    Mills Ekte Remulade – Piccalilli Sauce 165g
    £3.90
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    K-Salat Remoulade – Sweet Piccalilli Sauce 375g
    £3.00
    - +

Danish Mayo – A Cupboard Essential

January 24, 2017 | Leave a comment

Danish Mayonnaise & How to Enjoy It

Ask any Dane, and they will tell you Danish mayo is superior to all other mayo. Now, critical minds may say they are biased, but Danes do have a unique relationship with their mayo. It is not only used on their fab open sandwiches, paired with a variety of things, each combination more stunning than the other.

  • Mayo and prawns with a squeeze of lemon
  • Mayo and potato, chives and crispy onions
  • Mayo and salami
  • Mayo and egg, perhaps with tomato and parsley.
  • Mayo and everything – oh yes. Just be sure to consult the Danes so you don’t violate any open-sandwich rules (there are many and they are complex).

Another thing you may come across in Denmark is chips served with mayo. Not ketchup, but mayo. Not Danish mayo though, but the kind you find everywhere – Hellmann’s or the like. Smooth and mild, mayo’s creaminess complements the crispy salty chips perfectly. Frankly, we’re shocked no one else have thought of this before. Danes, we salute you. Now pass us the mayo, we’ve got chips coming – but please save the good stuff for your sandwiches.

    K-Salat Mayonnaise 375g
    £3.00
    Mills Ekte Majones – Mayonnaise 165g
    £3.75
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Pimp My Gingerbread House 2016

November 24, 2016 | Leave a comment

Pimp My Gingerbread House 2016

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It’s beginning to smell like Gingerbread.. That’s right, it’s that time of year again – it’s time for our annual Pimp My gingerbread House competition!

Every year in the run up to Christmas we run a competition – who can go crazy with a standard gingerbread house kit?

The rules;

Take one basic Gingerbread house kit from Annas and pimp it up to the best of your abilities. Think outside the box: be as creative, crazy and elaborate as you want. Whatever your strong side, put it into the house.

When you are done, send us a picture and we will put the best ones up on Instagram and Facebook and the blog during December.

We have four categories:

Adult – Beautiful: This is the main award. The most beautiful house you can make from a very basic kit of gingerbread house.

Adult – Super Creative.   This is the crazy house – like the house eaten by dragons, murder scenes, brothels, discos – whatever you can do to pimp up your house to silly standards with great use of imagination.

Child – up to 7 years old. It’s okay that your Mum and Dad help out, but here we do want to see real kids efforts. We know what seven year olds can do with a ginger bread kit – we want to see kids being allowed to unleash creativity. It’s fine to add Lego men and other toys to the mix or make a gingerbread house for your favourite dolls.

Young person 8-16 – We want to see your imagination run wild here. Make the house your own.

THIS YEAR’S PRIZES:

First prize this year in category ‘beautiful’ is £50 online OR in-store voucher for ScandiKitchen, a signed copy of our new baking book ‘Fika & Hygge’ and one of our fancy new mugs.

Adult – Creative – A hamper full of goodies and treats plus a signed baking book.

Children under 7: Sweeties. And more Sweeties. So many sweeties your Mum will be quite annoyed with us all the way through till January.

Young person 8-16 prize: Sweets. And more Sweets. So many sweeties your Mum will be quite annoyed with us and also a little jealous that it is all for you.

The rules:

      • All entries MUST be made from a basic Gingerbread House kit. We stock the one from Anna’s, which is the preferred one, but if you use the IKEA version that is also fine (they are similar in shape and size). Basically, the basic shape of the house must be the same so we can see just how creative you can be with a pre-fab kit. Any entries not made from the similar in size and shape to the Ikea and Anna’s kit will not be accepted, sorry.
      • When you submit photos, you need to state what category you are entering into.
      • Only one entry per person
      • If more than one person submits the same entry, the prize will be shared.
      • No alternative prize, no cash prizes, no exchanges.
      • Entries must be received before 16th December 2016 at noon to iloveherring@scandikitchen.co.uk
      • Employees of ScandiKitchen ltd not eligible to enter (Rebekka, we’re talking to you)
      • Winners will be picked by a jury of lovely people (most likely a selection of our customers – we usually pick 5 judges from Twitter to help us out).
      • The judges decisions are final.
      • Prizes can be sent to UK address only.

Send your photos to iloveherring@scandikitchen.co.uk before 16th December at noon to enter the competition. We look forward to seeing your creations.

Love

The Kitchen People x

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The Breakfast Edition; Scandi VS British Breakfast

September 15, 2016 | Leave a comment

Breakfast, Frokost, Morgenmad, Frukost. 

As the saying goes (well, in Scandinavia at least), dear child bears many names. We love breakfast. It is often the main reason we go to bed at night – to fast forward to another lovely meal. Best enjoyed with big yawns, squinty eyes and coffee-hungry brains.

Fun-fact: In Sweden and Norway, breakfast is called Frukost/Frokost. The same word means lunch in Denmark. In Denmark, breakfast is called morgenmad – morning food. So naturally, a lot of confusion arises around the two first meals of the day when Scandis visit each other. Frokost? Nej mand, it is way too early. Frokost? Vad då, it is far too late!

Ah, the stress!

Important-fact: 1 of 3 children in the UK don’t have breakfast. We are working with charity Magic Breakfast to reduce this number – please read more here about this important cause.

Whatever you call it, the first meal of the day is important, and each country has its own traditions. Scandinavian breakfasts differs a lot from the British – so, because we know you’ve been wondering, let us present – some basic differences between British breakfasts vs Scandi breakfasts .

The Brits have.. toast.
In Sweden: Crispbread. More crispbread.
In Norway: Various breads or crispbread. The one called Frukost.
In Denmark: Rye bread.

swedish crispbread knackebrod

The Brits top theirs with.. butter and Marmite or jam.
In Sweden: Egg and kaviar, cheese (Aseda graddost)
In Norway: Norvegia cheese or brown cheese.
In Denmark: Cheese. Butter.

Swedish breakfast egg kaviar

The Brits drink..tea or instant coffee.
In Sweden: Black coffee. Proper brewed coffee. Like this one from Zoegas.
In Norway: Black coffee. Sometimes with milk. This one from Friele, for example.
In Denmark: Black coffee. Proper brewed coffee. You get the drill.. we all like real coffee!

Image result for black coffee gif

 

The Brits also drink..orange juice.
In Sweden: Milk, sometimes juice.
In Norway: Milk, juice sometimes.
In Denmark: Milk or juice.

Milk for breakfast in Sweden, Denmark, Norway

 

The Brits who don’t eat bread eats.. cereal.
In Sweden: Filmjolk (a light natural yougurt) with granola or musli and some berries. Or kalaspuffar.
In Norway: Frokostblanding – breakfast mix! Ie., cereal. With banana  if you’re being virtuous.
In Denmark: Skyr or Ymer – a type of natural yogurt – with Ymerdrys – a lovely rye bread crumb cereal. 
swedish breakfast kalaspuffar
For a weekend breakfast, the Brit will have.. a full English (or components thereof).

In Sweden: ALL the crispbread. Several types of bread. Eggs and kaviar, different cheeses, jams, perhaps a ham or pate. Something bun-like. Yogurt pots, fresh fruits, something with egg. Coffee. Juices. Milk. Many many hours, newspapers and good company.

In Norway: Several types of bread. Toaster handy. Fresh rolls. Norvegia and brown cheese. Boilt eggs. Ham and chopped up cucumber and red pepper. Tomatoes. Jams. Pate. Basically – your entire fridge. Milk and juice to drink. Coffee AND tea. Many many hours, the radio in the background and good company.

In Denmark: Fresh rolls from the baker – at least one per person plus a Danish pastry and white bread, which is never normally eaten. Rye bread. Cheeses and jams and marmalade. OR a full on Scandi brunch with scrambled eggs, bacon, all the sandwich toppings in the fridge. Juice and milk, tea and coffee. Perhaps a shot of Gammel Dansk (a digestif) or three if it is a special occasion.

dansk morgenmad danish breakfast

Drool.

 

There you have it. The full low down on Scandi breakfasts. Fancy it? To shop Scandi favourite cheeses, jams, coffees and more have a look in our webshop – click  here.

Look Inside: Fika & Hygge Baking Book

September 8, 2016 | Leave a comment

Our New Book – A Look Inside

Yes, we talk a lot about Fika & Hygge – especially now with our new book officially out. It is a baking book, with recipes from across Scandinavia. From small bakes and biscuits, to celebration cakes and elaborate buns there’s something there for any occasion, small or large – certain to add to the feeling of hygge. In addition, the beautiful pictures makes us all long for winter in Scandinavia (even the non-Scandis!) with crinkly white snow, lots and lots of candles, knitted jumpers and fika-time inside.

Here are a few of the ScandiKitchen staff’s favourite recipes from the book (we were lucky enough to do a lot of cake-testing for this one! All in the name of creating the best baking book possible).

That Banana Cake Therese

‘That banana cake’ is the banana cake we serve in our cafe. Wonderfully moist and full of banana flavour, with a light frosting that perfectly complements the dense cake. Worth hunting down brown bananas for.

Banana Cake - ScandiKitchen

 Sarah Bernard – Biskvier – Martina

Little delectable morsels of chocolate, chocolate cream and a marzipanny base. Unbeatable combination and great with a cup of coffee, or as a simple dessert with a scoop of good quality vanilly ice cream. Super rich – but I somehow manage to squeeze in at least three of these. They take a little time to put together, but the result is worth it!

Sarah Bernhard - ScandiKitchen

Gingerbread with Lingonberry – Roxanne

Soft spiced gingerbread cake layered with cream flavoured with fresh tart lingonberries and a hint of sweetness – just delicious. And very pretty too.

Gingerbread & Lingonberry Cake - ScandiKitchen

 

Have the book? Do let us know if you try any of the recipes – we’d love to hear about it.

WIN a pair of tickets to see THE COMMUNE

July 21, 2016 | Leave a comment

WIN a pair of tickets to see THE COMMUNE

The very talented BAFTA­nominated Danish director Thomas Vinterberg’s that previously had us following Helge’s 60th birthday party in the movie ‘Festen’ (The Celebration) and the dramatic events occurring for a teacher in the movie Jagten (The Hunt) is now releasing a new movie – and we can’ wait to see it.

The new movie that is inspired by the directors own childhood experiences is called The Commune (Kollektivet) and takes place in Denmark during the early 70’s and is performed by a stunning ensemble cast, most notably Trine Dyrholm, who was awarded the Silver Bear for Best Actress at Berlin 2016 for her role as Anna. In this drama you get to follow the clash that can occur between people when desires surface and put solidarity to the test. You get to follow Erik, a professor of architecture, his wife Anna, and daughter Freja as Erik Inherits a Large mansion in suburban Copenhagen and they decide to set up a commune and invite friends, acquaintances and strangers to live with them. But when Erik begins an affair with Emma, a beautiful young student from his course, the spirit of free love that formed the foundations of the commune will threaten to bring it all tumbling down…

 

310-The-Commune-Trine-Dyrholm-Ulrich-Thomsen-photo-by-Sofia-Sabel

 

 

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The Commune gets released in cinemas across the country on the 29th.

To celebrate the upcoming movie by one of our favorite Scandinavian directors we at ScandiKitchen, in collaboration with Curzon Cinemas, want to give you the opportunity to WIN two tickets to go and see the movie.

In order to participate in the competition you need to answer the following question:

Denmark’s second largest city is….

  1. a) Malmö
  2. b) Århus
  3. c) Middelfart

Send your answer to iloveherring@scandikitchen.co.uk before Tuesday 26th July 2016 midday. Terms for competition: The winner will be drawn at random from all correct entries. Winner will get two tickets to go and see the movie at Curzon Cinema in London or watch it on demand if outside London. No alternative prize, no cash alternative. Winner must be 18 or over. All responsibilities of this competition lies with Curzon Cinema.

 

We wish you all good luck and here you can see the trailer or go to www.TheCommuneFilm.com for more information about the movie and get as exited as we are!

A Scandinavian Barbecue

May 26, 2016 | Leave a comment

 

Let’s Have a Barbecue – Scandi Style!

Warmer weather and glimpses of sun can only mean one thing – barbecue season is here.

Here’s what you need for a Scandi barbecue.

The nibbles:

Nibbles are important – everyone without a gas barbecue knows this. It always takes about 5 hours to get hot enough to cook anything on so nibbles are crucial to avoid eating each other during the wait.
We like crisps – especially dill chips and sour cream and onion. They’re especially nice with a refreshing dip – such as Estrella Dill dip mix or Holiday.

    Estrella Sourcream & Onion Crisps 175g
    £2.50
    - +
    Estrella Holiday Dipmix – Onion & Pepper Dip Mix 26g
    £1.20
    - +
    Estrella Dillchips – Dill Crisps 175g
    £2.50
    - +

The barbecue bit:

Unless you have a gas barbecue, sausages are the way to go. They cook in less than an hour, are easy to eat standing up, can hold most toppings – and crucially – they taste good even when they’re a bit burnt.
We LOVE the barbecue range from Per I Viken – which includes spicy chorizo, herby Salsiccia and the super savoury Bratwurst. For kids, red hot dogs or classic wienerkorv always go down a treat.

    Per i Viken Wienerkorv – Wiener Sausages 8-pack
    £4.35
    - +
    Gøl Røde Pølser – Red Hot Dogs 375g
    £4.80
    - +

The bready bits:

Classic sausage buns are a must – the softer sweeter bun contrasts oh so well with the meaty sausages. Norwegians are partial to a thin potato flatbread; lompe, which also works a treat.
Not traditional, but very nice, is Swedish soft flatbread. Take it easy on the toppings, though, as this tends to be more fragile than the other two.

    Polarbrod Sarek – Thin Flatbread 8-pack
    £2.00
    - +
    Korvbrödsbagarn Korvbröd – Hotdog Buns 10-pack
    £2.00
    - +
    Bjørken Lomper 10-pack – Soft Potato Flatbread 260g
    £2.15
    - +

The condiments:

A barbecue needs a good range of condiments. Ketchup, several types of mustard, pickles, remoulade, mayonnaise, skagenrora (if you’re from Gothenburg), and crispy onions are absolutely non-negotiable; we like everything at once, but if you fancy a slightly lighter version we recommend you try one of the following combos:

The Swede: Ketchup, mustard, bostongurka and crispy onions. In a bun.
The Dane: Remoulade. Other bits, optional.
The Norwegian: Ketchup, mustard, crispy onions. In lompe.

    Johnnys Senap Sötstark – Hot and Sweet Mustard 500g
    £3.30
    - +
    Bähncke Stærk Sennep – Sharp Mustard 380g
    £3.00
    - +
    Bähncke Hotdog Ketchup 405g
    £3.00
    - +
    ScandiKitchen Skagenröra – Seafood Salad 200g – Best before 29-03
    £3.00 £1.29
    - +
    Felix Bostongurka – Pickled Cucumber Relish 375g
    £2.95
    - +
    Beauvais Agurkesalat – Pickled Cucumber 550g
    £2.90
    - +
    K-Salat Remoulade – Sweet Piccalilli Sauce 375g
    £3.00
    - +
    K-Salat Mayonnaise 375g
    £3.00

Drinks;

Cold beers and soft drinks.

    Ringnes Solo – Orange Soft Drink 330ml
    £2.00
    - +
    Nils Oscar God Lager 5.3% – Beer 330ml
    £2.30
    - +

Other bits; An umbrella. A kitchen ready to take over the cooking should the barbecue fail you. More snacks, something sweet to finish with – such as pick and mix and gifflar.

    Pågen Kanelgifflar – Mini Cinnamon Buns 260g
    £2.25
    - +
    Ahlgrens Bilar Original – Fruity Marshmallow Sweets 125g
    £1.95
    - +

To view our Barbecue corner – click here. Happy barbecuing!

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