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Monthly Archives: March 2017

How to hotdog the Scandinavian way

March 30, 2017 | Leave a comment

This weekend 31st March – 2nd April 2017 we are serving Swedish, Danish and Norwegian hotdogs. Or just tell us how you like it.

ALL WEEKEND – only £2 each (usual price £3). 

Enjoy with a cold Tuborg beer for just £5

How to hotdog the Scandi way

Look, we have told the world that we’re all about nature. That we forage for weird plants, eat sour milk and lead wholesome, healthy lagom lives. This is, of course, sort of true.

Except on weekends.

Come Friday night – also known as Fredagsmys / Fredagshygge, all bets are off and we can eat crisps and other treats. On Saturday, we eat sweets. By Sunday, we go back to being wholesome again.

There is another little thing that we Scandinavians ‘do’, though. A lot. We hotdog. Okay, it’s not a verb, but it should be – and we want to hotdog with you, too.

What’s so good about a Scandi Hotdog? The ones you get in IKEA (the 50p ones – where you only have to spend £422 on bookshelves and candles before you get one) are not quite a true representatives of a true Scandi Hotdog. No, no.

The Sausage

Obviously, the most important part. There are many varieties, but the best ones are rather high meat content (go figure) – brands such as small food producer Per I Viken do the best ones on the market. The style of sausage in Scandinavian is always a wiener type sausage.

In Denmark, they like RED coloured sausages. Why? It started as a bit of a ploy. In the olden days, the hotdog vendors were allowed to sell yesterday’s sausages for pittance to the kids – BUT they had to add red colouring to the water so people know they were getting old sausages. Nowadays, this type is the most famous of them all – and no, they are no longer old, but are just made like this.

Only the Danes like these. They are delicious, but don’t try to get a Swede to pick one –the red thing, it’s a Danish thing.

The Bread

It’s a funny one, but we don’t like long buns. Our buns are short and way too small for the sausage. Yeah, we know – but that’s how we like them. We don’t do long buns. We do good, shorter buns.

Toppings

We take our topping serious. Go to the bottom of this post for the country specific ‘ways’ – but here is a low-down:

Ketchup

It’s never Heinz. It’s usually a more spiced variety that is made for our hotdogs. Try Idun for a Norway style – or Bähncke for a superb Danish ketchup.

Mustard

Again, Bähncke is a good one – or Idun from Norway, especially for hotdogs. We also have Swedish Slotts mustard, but it is quite strong, so only for the initiated.

Remoulade

Essential, if you are a Dane. It’s very nice, too.

Crispy onions

Delicious on burgers, hotdogs, sandwiches.

Raw onions

The Danes favour this. We like raw.

Pickles

Several options here. Boston Pickles is chopped pickles from Sweden, with a bit of seasoning. Or go for the ever popular Smörgåsgurka from Sweden – a crunchy pickle, quite sweet. Lastly, the Danish Agurkesalat – thinly sliced pickles – perfect on top of those red sausages.

Gurkmajonäs

Chopped pickles (usually smörgåsgurka) mixed with mayonnaise – favoured by Swedes.

The HotDogs

Denmark

A bun, a red sausage, ketchup, mustard, remoulade, raw OR crispy onions. Or both. Pickled Agurkesalat.

Norway

A potato pancake called a lompe, brown pølse sausage, ketchup, mustard.

Sweden

A bun, a brown wienerkorv, ketchup, mustard, Bostongurka or Gurkmajonäs.

Sweden 2: The above, but with a dollop of mashed potato on top. Known as Halv Special (A Half Special). Add another Sausage as it is Hel Special (Full Special)

Sweden 3: Bun, sausage, prawn mayonnaise. Well, yes, it’s a thing. Some add ketchup, too. And yes, some add mash as well. It’s a Swedish thing.

This weekend 31st March – 2nd April 2017 we are serving Swedish, Danish and Norwegian hotdogs. Or just tell us how you like it.

ALL WEEKEND – only £2 each (usual price £3). 

Enjoy with a cold Tuborg beer for just £5

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.

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