March 22, 2018 | Leave a comment
7 random facts about Easter in Scandinavia
March 22, 2018 | Leave a comment
7 random facts about Easter in Scandinavia
February 1, 2018 | Leave a comment
Things you wanted to know about Semlor but were afraid to ask
September 7, 2017 | Leave a comment
7 Random Facts About Crispbread
August 24, 2017 | Leave a comment
Crispbread Pizza With Pulled Pork and Guacamole
Another lovely version of crispbread pizza – this time with pulled pork and avocado cream. Oh yes. Guaranteed to make you popular. We like the original Leksands (blue packaging) for this, but any big round will work as the toppings are so flavoursome.
1. Pre-heat oven to 225 degrees celsius.
Bake for approximately 10 minutes until the cheese is bubbly and slightly golden. Meanwhile, mash the avocado with the chili, coriander and lime juice – serve with a dollop of guacamole.
Thanks to our friends at Leksands for the recipe – just mildly adapted for a UK kitchen.
August 16, 2017 | Leave a comment
7 Random Facts About Surströmming
Despite (or because of – we don’t know) the smell – surströmming is very popular in Sweden, and many await the season with anticipation, dreaming about the first taste of this speciality.
Have you tried it? What did you think? Share in comments please – we’d love to hear your thoughts on this smelly subject.
August 10, 2017 | Leave a comment
Easy Västerbotten Cheese Quiche
A great side dish for a crayfish party – this traditional cheese tart is really lovely served with caviar dressing.
For the pastry:
For the filling:
You’ll need a tart tin (25-28cm diameter) with a loose base.
Leave it to cool before slicing. Serve cold or lukewarm.
Västerbottenpaj goes well with romsås, a caviar sauce. Alternatively, if you can get real bleak roe (Löjrom), serve the tart with a spoonful of this, some crème fraîche and finely chopped red onion.
Romsås Caivar Sauce:
In a bowl, mix together 3 large tbsp. crème fraiche and one jar of red lumpfish roe (80g). Leave to set in the fridge, then stir again just before serving.
August 3, 2017 | Leave a comment
11 Facts About Beer in Scandiland
Scandinavian Beers; Nils Oscar
Nils Oscar’s microbrewery is located in Nyköping near Stockholm. Their beers are distributed across Sweden to both shops and restaurants – and the beers are many and varied. We stock three of these – a lager, an India ale and a rich and charismatic smoked porter. Oh yes. Here is a little introduction to our three main lines – (we sometimes also stock their seasonal beers, e.g. for Christmas).
God Lager – 5.3%
The beer with the strange name – in Swedish it simply means ’good lager’, although when exported it has attracted name’s such as God’s lager or heavenly lager. God lager is the first beer produced from the brand Nils Oscar and is the best-selling microbrew in Sweden.
God lager is made with wiener malt from Germany; highly regarded in the industry. Slightly darker for a richer taste. Two types of hops are used – Spalt Select and Tettnanger – for flavor and aroma. The yeast is a German pilsner type. And together, God lager is an easy drinking but interesting beer that is equally good on its own, with salty snacks or with your meal.
India Ale – 5.3% ABV
Launched in 2005, Nils Oscar’s India Ale has won several accolades in Sweden. Nils Oscar themselves say it is almost a British Ale with American Hops; which we agree that it is. The beer has both a rich sweetness and a fruitier, bitter note from the hops – meaning it is well rounded and suits traditional as well as modern dishes, as well as being great, just as it is. Enjoy well chilled.
Rökporter – 5.9% ABV
This smoked porter is rich and complex – with notes of caramel, dried fruit and smoked charcuterie. Made with five different types of malt including caramel malt and two types of hops (Fuggles and Amarillo), this beer goes well with rich foods such as barbecued meat, and is lovely added to a meat stew or to your bread dough for richer flavour. Not an easy summer drink; save this one for the darker, colder months, where it will fit perfectly.
For a more detailed review of God Lager and Rökporter – Check out Craft Council’s review below.
June 9, 2017 | 1 Comment
Seven things about Nordic Midsummer
The longest day of the year is very important to us Northern people. We have light! And not only that, we have so much of it we hardly see dark and we get to make up for all of those months of candle lit cosiness and snow.
We all celebrate the day slightly differently, so here are a few facts to get you started in the preparations.
Sweden treats Midsummer like it’s national day. Actually, Sweden’s national day is a few weeks earlier, but everybody celebrates Midsummer instead. It’s always celebrated on the closest Friday (this year, 23rd June) and it’s a public holiday.
In London, it’s celebrated on the Saturday because we need to not be at work when we do it.
St John’s Eve In Denmark and Norway, the evening is celebrated on the actual day (23rd June, no matter if it’s a Friday or not) and there, it’s called more St John’s Eve as well as Midsommer Aften.
Sweden and Finland celebrate with Midsummer poles. These are a bit like May Poles, except it’s not May and ours have a lot of fertility symbols associated with them. The Midsummer poles are covered in flowers and greenery. Everybody wears flower garlands in their hair and very summery clothes. Some people try the yellow/blue flag combo for clothes, but it is rarely a good look.
Danes burn witches on Midsummer eve. Much like the British burn Guy Forkes, the Danes like to burn witches on this evening and send them off to Blue Mountain in Germany to dance with the devil. All while the (usually stuffed hay effigy) witches are burning on the bonfire, Danes sing songs about how much they love Denmark (usually a lone guy on a guitar will lead the singing – he always sings with his eyes closed and is very serious).
It’s still all about food. For the Swedes, it is all about the day long picnic and being outside. Meatballs are featured and it is high season for Sandwich cakes, too. The Danes tend to celebrate in the evening with dinner at home, but spend the evening trying to bake stick bread on the embers of the bon fire (it never works).
What about the little frogs? The Swedes, at every given opportunity but none more so than Midsummer, will sing songs about little frogs with no ears and no tails, whilst jumping around the Midsummer pole. Old, young, everyone. It’s a thing and it looks odd – but it is super fun. Do join in.
Swedes pick seven wild flowers on Midsummer eve and put them under their pillow. They will dream of the person they will marry. Some don’t even wait that long, as the birth rate spikes in Sweden every year exactly nine months after Midsummer.
There are Midsummer events held all over the UK – both Danish, Swedish, Finnish and Norwegian. Local churches are a good place to start for information on where to go.
There is no big official London picnic (there never is – it’s all a bit spontaneous) but people tend to gather in patches in the different parks and just bring a picnic. Ask local Scandies for details or just wander around and look for the people with flowers in their hair. You’ll find them.
There is a massive official Midsummer Party in London in the evening of 24th June – arranged by London Swedes – it is at the Loft in Kilburn and you can buy tickets here
April 28, 2017 | Leave a comment
Seven Nordic ways to talk about hangovers
‘Bagstiv’ is a Danish word for when you wake up the next morning, still drunk. Literally: Backwards drunk – in Sweden and Norway, its Bakfull and bakrus.
2. A drunk Dane might say he has a “Stick in ear” (en kæp i øret)
3. The Finnish word for hangover is “Krapula”
4. The Old Norse Viking word for hangover was ‘kveis’, meaning “uneasiness after debauchery”
5. In Denmark, if you drink a beer on a hang over, it is known as a Reperationsbajer – literally, a ‘repair beer’
6. In Danish, hangovers are known as Tømremænd – literally, carpenters.
7. “Fylleangst” pronounced (foola angst) means “drunk anxiety” in Norway and is the unsettling feeling one has the day after drinking when you can’t remember what you did, how you acted or who may have seen you do it!