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Norwegian Hot Chocolate Recipe from 1875

Updated: Nov 23, 2022

Nordic hot chocolate in pretty cup
Varm sjokolade is a favourite in Scandinavia in the winter

There's no doubt about it varm sjokolade (hot cocoa) is very popular in Scandinavia in the winter months. There is nothing more comforting than coming in from the biting cold to a warming cup of something sweet and creamy.

Oselias kokebok
Oselia's Kokebok is full of historic Norwegian recipes

On a recent visit to my local library here in Vestfold I stumbled across an intriguing cookery book that I simply had to investigate more. It is the translation and interpretation of a lost cookery book from the last part of the 1800s. The book belonged to a lady called Oselia Osuldsen who lived in the southern town of Arendal. From 1875 to 1885 she had the foresight to write down many of her favourite recipes and gave this amazing insight into life back then. One of the things I love so much about this is that many of us still do exactly the same as Oselia - we hold the family cookbook and keep a record of the recipes that our grandparents and great-grandparents have treasured. We are passing them on to the next generations in precisely the same way that Oselia did.

Hot chocolate Nordic style
Serve this decadent varm sjokolade in your best cup and saucer with a generous spoonful of cream

Arendal is a beautiful seaside town and from the look of the recipes Oselia must have had some of the choicest ingredients to experiment with.

This hot chocolate recipe is no exception. It's rich, decadent and full of what would have been fairly pricey ingredients in 1875 like dark chocolate, butter and cream. It has quickly become my favourite hot chocolate recipe and I am sure that you are going to love it too!

Hot chocolate in the snow
In the winter months we need a few extra calories and some simple indulgences

Norwegian Hot Chocolate Recipe from 1875. Serves 4


1000ml /33.8 fl oz milk

150g / 5.3 oz dark or plain chocolate

80g / 2.8 oz butter

100g / 3.5 oz sugar

1 egg yolk

Double or heavy cream to finish


  1. In a small bowl put aside 1 tablespoon of the milk. Heat the rest of the milk in a saucepan over a medium heat.

  2. Break the chocolate into pieces and add to the hot milk with the butter. Stir over a low heat until melted and then add the sugar. Stir well until melted.

  3. Beat the egg yolk into the milk you put to one side.

  4. Remove the hot chocolate from the heat and stir in the egg yolk mixture. Stir for a minute to allow the hot milk to cook the egg yolk slightly but do this off the heat.

  5. Serve the hot chocolate whilst it's still warm and with a spoonful of whipped cream on the top for extra decadence.

Why not come into the Living a Nordic Life Facebook group and share your hot chocolate recipes and photos with us. We love to talk about all things Nordic living and we'd be delighted to see you there.

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