Or what we think about when it is biting cold, rainy and dark. It is the little things. From the smell of your coffee in the morning, to the fact that you can wear your old bright knitted socks that grandma made and perhaps spend some hours in the kitchen baking with cinnamon. Let’s go on…
Autumn is the perfect time to go full fledged HYGGE. Candles EVERYWHERE.
We can finally wear all the knitted socks we own…
…and our (Christmas) jumpers
We can eat lovely traditional food such as Fårikål (lit. Mutton in cabbage – Norway’s national dish; mutton or lamb stewed with cabbage and peppercorns and not much else) and Korv Stroganoff (the Swedish sausage version of the stew named after a 19th century Russian count).
..and cover everything in cinnamon. Buns, apple cakes, porridge, crispbread..yum!
We can go hiking like a Norwegian in bright, weatherproof jackets, with a Kvikk Lunsj to match. They taste best when enjoyed outside in the fresh air, you know (and on the inside, contains the Norwegian rules of the mountain to help you stay safe. If you can read Norwegian, that is).
We can FINALLY wear our Sydvests (sou’westerns).
And we finally don’t have to defend our multiple-cups-of-coffee-by-9am habit – the colder dark mornings being the perfect excuse.
Fredagsmys is back on the agenda; It is, year round – but in summer sometimes UTEPILS takes precedent (Utepils = the Norwegian concept of enjoying a beer outside whenever there is a sliver of sunshine and warmth in the air (read; warmer than 4 degrees)
And, some say it is a bit early, but it still makes us happy to start planning our Glögg parties…
…and our gingerbread baking competitions..
Just your casual Scandi gingerbread house production.
(We know, we KNOW! The last two are strictly for The season that shall not yet be named. But when autumn is grey, dark and cold it is nice to let yourself be just a teeny bit excited about the next thing. We can almost smell the glögg! No, it is not too soon – we have some already..)
What else do you like about autumn? Anything we missed, pop it in the comments please.
Crispbread is common across Scandinavia, but especially so in Sweden, followed closely by Norway. 85% of all Swedish households have it at all times.
Crispbread is Sweden’s second largest export – second only to Absolut vodka.
Your average Swedish munches through 5.5 kg of crispbread every year – and crispbread is amongst the most missed food products for Swedes abroad. It may not sound much, but considering an average crispbread weighs about 12 grams, this equates to 458 slices every year. A crispbread a day keeps the doctor away.
What.. IS crispbread? Crispbread is traditionally made with only wholegrain rye, yeast, salt and water, although these days you have a wide range of variety ranging from all-wheat to all nut and seed (to purist, these don’t count). However, when you say crispbread, most people will still think of your classic rye crispbread.
In Scandinavia, crispbread is treated as any other type of bread. It can be topped with almost anything, and is a common part of breakfast, lunch, dinner or snacks in between.
Super versatile, you can have crispbread at every meal. Crushed over a bowl of yoghurt, maybe with some berries, for a naturally low sugar, high fibre and delicious granola for breakfast; topped with smoked salmon and cream cheese for lunch; used as pizza base for dinner (oh yes, crispbread pizza is a thing and it’s delicious. In Sweden you can even buy ready made frozen crispbread pizzas).
In the UK, crispbread is often thought about in one of two ways; 1; as a cracker for cheese or 2; diet food. This saddens our crispy Scandi hearts and tummies. Because; crispbread is absolutely great with cheese, and is definitely much better for you than mass produced wonderbread – but Scandis eat crispbread because it is tasty (and you can top it with anything you like), convenient (it keeps forever) and good for you. You could eat 4 triangles of crispbread for every slice of white bread – and thanks to the high fibre content you will stay fuller for a lot longer. Meaning you may be able to resist that cinnamon bun later. Or not. But that’s ok. Balancing your crispbread with cinnamon buns is what the Swedes would call ‘lagom’.
Eurovision was set up as a way to unite people. I 1956, we were all to unite through song in Switzerland – and 7 countries took part. This year 42 countries will be competing (it was supposed to be 43, but Russia didn’t want to play) – looking to unite through sequins and glitz, animal costumes and wind machines.
When ABBA won in 1974 with Waterloo, the UK gave them ‘nul points’
In 1969, there were 4 winners – that was before the tie-rule was introduced, so, United Kingdom, Spain, the Netherlands and France all won. Nice, right?
Viking Harold Bluetooth was great at connecting nations – Bluetooth tech is named after him: the logo are his initials.
Erik the Red was so violent even fellow Vikings objected; exiling him from both Norway and Iceland (they made him to go Greenland).
Viking is something you do, not something you are.The word Viking comes from the people from the Vik, (vik means bay). People who would sail off to other places were ‘going viking’. The word Viking wasn’t used in English until 19th Century – before this, we were just known as ‘Norsemen’ or ‘Danes’.
The traditional Northern greeting “‘Ey up” comes from the Viking times
Not very viking but very northern.
The Old Norse Viking word for drunk was ‘kveis’, meaning “uneasiness after debauchery”
Viking women could ‘divorce’ their husbands quite easily – reasons included ‘the showing of too much chest hair”.
The word Saturday in Scandinavia is ‘Lørdag’ which comes from the old Norse word laugardagr; a combination of the words laug meaning ‘bath’ and dagr meaning ‘day’. The Vikings were very clean people (at least in comparison to many other nations) and had weekly baths.
1. The Finns drink more coffee per head than any other people in the whole world (12.2kg per person per year)
2. Finland has the most amount of heavy metal band per capita in the world.
3. There are over 2 million saunas in Finland and 99% of Finns take a Sauna once a week or more. There is a Burger King in Finland that has an in-store sauna.
4. In Finnish a hangover is known as Krapula.
5. The Finns have a word for ‘Staying in drinking beer in your underwear with no intention of going out’ (kalsarikannit)
6. Finns have a tradition of Ants Nest Sitting Competition – a fun thing to do with friends. You take down your pants, sit down on an ants nest – first person up, loses.
7. The Finns invented the Molotov cocktail. No, it is not the drinking kind. You know Finns only drink vodka.
Very useful, highly impressive and absolutely random facts about ABBA.
Before ABBA was known as ABBA they were known as ‘Festfolk’ – the Party People.
In 1974, when ABBA won Eurovision with Waterloo, the UK gave them ‘nul points’. ABBA was actually the first act from Sweden to win the Eurovision Song Contest. This was done on April 6th, 1974 with the song “Waterloo.”
ABBA the band had to get permission from ABBA the seafood company to use their name (not the other way around).
ABBA’s first single together as ABBA was ‘People Need Love’ (Good one for the pub quiz, this!).
The most commonly misheard ABBA lyric is from Dancing Queen, when people hear ‘Chicken the Dancing Queen’ instead of ‘Digging the Dancing Queen’. (The second one is “Dancing queen, feel the meat on the tangerine”) *please note this may or may not be entirely true.
Anni-Frid Lyngstad was born on November 15th, 1945 in Bjørkåsen, Norway – but grew up in Sweden. So if you ask Norwegians, ABBA is 1/4 Norwegian.
In 1979, ABBA fronted a poster for British Rail and Keep Britain Tidy.
October 4th is official day of the Cinnamon Bun in Sweden. Here at ScandiKitchen, every day is bun day, but this week, we’re celebrating even more than usual.
We’ve put together some fact about the humble cinnamon bun so you can go entertain your mates down the pub with your expert bun fun knowledge.
The cinnamon bun is actually thought to originate from Sweden in the 1920’s, but didn’t really gain popularity until the fifties. The Annual Cinnamon Bun Day started in 1999.
Many nations have similar buns. Most Nordic buns are spiced with a bit of ground cardamom, which sets them apart from other cinnamon buns on this lovely planet of ours.
A real Scandinavian cinnamon bun doesn’t have any icing on top. Just nibbed sugar, also known as pearl sugar.
The biggest cinnamon bun ever was baked in on Feb 10, 2006, weighing in at 111.8kg. Wayne and Anita Warren, owners of The House of Bread in Mill Creek, Washington received their certificate from the Guinness Book of World Records for the largest cinnamon roll ever made.
It is a proven fact that it is impossible to resist a freshly baked cinnamon bun. You just can’t.
The biggest buns in Sweden are called Hagabullar.
The average Swede eats 316 cinnamon buns a year (The average Torben at ScandiKitchen eats more than that)
Sweden imports 375 tonnes of cinnamon every year.
Some people love them so much that make them in to earrings – which really looks rather suspect….
Or wear them as costumes
Or even as hair pieces…
Or sing about cinnamon buns…
And books have been written about them….
Get yourself a bun cushion…
The @ sign in Swedish is sometimes referred to as ‘kanelbulle’. So, iloveherring – kanelbulle – scandikitchen.co.uk.
Cinnamon bun in Swedish is Kanelbulle, in Norway, its Skillingsbolle. In Danish, Kanelsnegl and in Finnish, Korvapuusti – literally meaning Slapped Ear.
Some people make horrible things, such as Bacon Cinnamon Rolls. Actual bacon baked into it. We do not like those people. Some people also make Cinnamon Roll Burgers. This is a criminal offence in Sweden. Maybe. Okay, it’s not, but it should be.
There are two kinds of cinnamon: Ceylon cinnamon, also known as “true cinnamon” (cinnamon verum) is very expensive. Therefore, most foods in the USA and Western Europe, including sticky buns, breads and other products use the cheaper Cassia cinnamon (dried Cassia bark).
Cinnamon contains Coumarin, which is not great for the body and can damage the liver. You should only eat 0.1 milligram per day. Danish food police tested a lot of bakeries a few years back and found we were all being overdosed by cinnamon. Don’t fear, though, if you use the good quality cinnamon, the levels of coumarin are very low. So, don’t skimp on your cinnamon quality and you’ll be fine to add a few extra spoonful to your filling.
Enjoy Bun Day on the 4th October – we want to see your buns, so don’t forget to send us a picture to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll post the best ones on facebook and instagram. Prizes for the best looking buns.