Everyone loves to see how other people live their lives especially if they are from a country that they feel an affinity to. I am always drawn to those Facebook posts entitled things like "50 breakfast from around the world". Sometimes they all look remarkably similar to what we would eat ourselves, but other times they are incredibly different.
So do you know what we like to eat for breakfast in the Nordics? I invite you to join me and my family at our breakfast table and I'll take you a little culinary journey to a Nordic breakfast.
We eat lots of savoury items
Although sweet breakfasts are sometimes a thing here in the Nordics, most breakfast items tend to lean towards the savoury. We like to start the day with something healthy and nutritious, and sugary breakfasts are not usually that.
Wholemeal bread and wholegrain knekkebrød are staples
Most breads and knekkebrød (crispbread) in the Nordics is packed full of healthy grains and seeds, and breakfast options are no exception. Wholemeal or whole grain bread is preferred and knekkebrød made with grains like rye are normal
Cheese and jam together is a thing here
This one took me a little while to get used to! In England we are famous for pairing apple sauce and pork, or cheese and sweet chutney, but it surprised me a little to see Jarlsberg cheese with strawberry jam, or raspberry jam and brunost. But once you've tried it you'll love it and if you are craving something sweet with your breakfast it's the ideal compromise.
Coffee is a must
The Nordic countries are famous for their coffee drinking. It starts first thing in the morning and carries on for every break throughout the day. Coffee with breakfast is a must. And it's drunk black.
There is always plenty of protein
A healthy Nordic breakfast will always include lots of protein. Favourites are kaviar (a paste made from smoked fish roe), hard boiled eggs or ham. There are so many types of salamis and cured meats to choose from in the Nordics that you would sure to find something that appealed to you and gave you the chance to include some protein in your breakfast.
Fish is a favourite
It goes without saying that countries that have so much coastline would include fish at the first meal of the day. The Nordic breakfast usually includes fish of some kind or another. It might be pickled herring, smoked salmon or a simple spread of kaviar, but it's often there on the breakfast table.
Porridge is the choice for the winter
Winter in the Nordics can be very cold and so you want to have something warming before you start the day. Porridge or grøt is the obvious choice for those cold mornings and Nordic porridge comes in a wonderful variety from the most familiar oat porridge to barley and rice porridge.
How many of these do you include in your own breakfast? Does it feel so very different to your own breakfast wherever you are?
Come and join me in the Living a Nordic Life Facebook group and let me know.