So, what do the Swedes eat for Christmas? The first year that I lived here was an unusual surprise in terms of Christmas food. All of the food in Sweden is delicious- creamy sauces, fresh vegetables, ecological meat. However, their Christmas food just did not appeal to my taste buds. This Christmas was another surprise because I enjoyed every bite.
On Julafton (Christmas Eve), we prepared a traditional julbord.
The first plate is what I like to call the fish plate.
There is multiple sill (herring) dishes in different sauces.
Various salmon dishes
and havrekex with julskinka (Christmas ham).
Here is my fish plate. I tried all of the herring dishes but I couldn’t finish them. I think it is an acquired taste so perhaps I will learn to love it in the future. (Sorry for the blurry photo)
I am turning into Hans because I love the havrekex with Christmas ham!
The hot dishes include homemade meatballs, small sausages, broccoli cheese casserole *which I made for nostalgic reasons ;), potatoes, Janssons’ frestelse which is like a potato and fish casserole, and a Finnish parsnip dish.
My favorite was the homemade meatballs and the broccoli cheese casserole, naturally.
For dessert, there was a variety of soft cheese and pepparkakor.
I opted away from the dessert because I had been snacking all day on….
grapes, figs, walnuts and knäck.
Knäck is a candy that can be found at almost any Swedes home during Christmas. They have a toffee-type texture to them and are made from sugar, cream, syrup and almonds.
Julafton wasn’t what I expected it to be. It surpassed my expectations tremendously because I had absolutely none. The first Christmas in Sweden, I didn’t like the food. Maybe because I was away from home on Christmas, maybe because I was young, maybe because I wanted the comfort of American casseroles.. who knows. However, the Julbord was the opposite of a let down and was fantastic this year.