May 11, 2017 | Leave a comment
May 11, 2017 | Leave a comment
7 Random Facts About 17th May – Norway Day
April 10, 2017 | Leave a comment
7 random facts about Scandinavian Easter
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.
1. Gammelost (Old cheese)
2. Danablu (Danish Blue)
3. Brunost (Brown cheese)
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)
7. Gamle Ole (Old Ole)
8. Prästost (Priest cheese)
9. Leipäjuusto (also known as “squeaky cheese”)
10. Rejeost (Prawn cheese)
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.
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
Send your answer by email to firstname.lastname@example.org 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.
November 24, 2016 | Leave a comment
Pimp My Gingerbread House 2016
Every year in the run up to Christmas we run a competition – who can go crazy with a standard gingerbread house kit?
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.
Send your photos to email@example.com before 16th December at noon to enter the competition. We look forward to seeing your creations.
The Kitchen People x
September 22, 2016 | Leave a comment
Matpakke – An Intro To a Norwegian Packed Lunch
Ask any Norwegian what they had for lunch in school and the answer will be ‘matpakke’ (or nistepakke) – packed lunch. That’s right, in Norway there’s no school dinners or equivalent. The food you eat, you bring from home.
A packed lunch doesn’t sound bad though? You may envisage lovely fresh salads, crusty baguettes with lots of filling or maybe dinner leftovers. But really, in most cases, it looks something like this;
Two slices of bread – open sandwiches – with ham and cheese, for example. They come wrapped in greaseproof paper, with the all important mellomleggspapir* inbetween each open sandwich.
*Mellomleggspapir are rectangular pieces of greaseproof paper bought specifically to keep your sandwiches from sticking to each other. Very often the only thing protecting your jam sandwich from the liver pate. However well-intended, most Norwegians can testify – the mellomleggspapir is usually just a tad too small too form a fully protective layer inbetween each sandwich – but hey – jam and liver pate isn’t too bad (ikke sant?).
Matpakke is such an integrated part of the Norwegian ‘folkesjel’ – people-soul – that we even have a song written about it;
In case your Norwegian is a bit rusty – the gist of the song is that having your food in greaseproof paper instead of on a plate is a bit sad. The toppings are squashed, mixed up and stick to each other. Boo-hoo.
Despite having a ton of toppings to choose from, very many people will have the same topping every day for their entire school-career. 2 slices with salami and mayo every day for 7 years? Done. Tired of it? Yes. Bother changing it? But why would you?
Have you got any stories or memories of matpakke? We’d love to hear them.
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Norsk Matpakke – Our top facts, tips and insights about Matpakke
*Ordenselever – a title given to one or two pupils who are responsible for keeping the classroom in order – by for example wiping the blackboard between lessons, emptying the recycling – and of course bringing the milk.
Aaah matpakke. Something we love to hate, but nevertheless look forward to every single day – if not for the contents, then just for the fact that it offers a little break. And we get to eat.
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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.
The Brits drink..tea or instant coffee.
The Brits also drink..orange juice.
The Brits who don’t eat bread eats.. cereal.
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.
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.
June 16, 2016 | Leave a comment
Midsummer in Norway – Celebrating St. Hans (St. John’s)
Midsummer is usually not called midsummer in Norway, but St. Hans after the evangelist John (called Johannes in Norwegian; Hans is the shortened form). Originally two separate celebrations, they have now – for most people – merged into one.
St. Hans day is the 24th of June every year, and the celebrations are held on St. Hans’ eve – the 23rd. It is not a national holiday – but most people mark it in some way or another. Traditionally celebrated with a huge bonfire, or out on the fjord if you’re lucky enough to have a boat or know someone who does.
Bonfires are set up in many neighbourhoods, and is usually accompanied by a barbecue feast and beers – hot dogs in lompe, with ketchup, mustard and crispy onions.
Ice cream for afters (often, the inaccurately named Kroneis (Norway’s cornetto – name translated to 10p-ice cream, but it costs the equivalent to £2).
A typical St. Hans celebrations often includes playing games – here are some of our favourites:
Egg-racing; race each other whilst balancing an egg on a spoon held in your mouth (hardboiling the egg beforehand makes it easier – but it’s more fun when you risk it with a raw one!)
April 27, 2016 | 2 Comments
24 ways to be more Norwegian