Welcome to a
bellyful of Barden - which is contentedly digesting a host of Norwegian
cod and shrimps, cleverly crafted by Steve Munkley, head chef at
the Royal Garden Hotel in Kensington High Street...
As ever, BBC London's
users and listeners surpassed themselves by ringing us on the Vanessa
show with a host of brilliant Scandinavian-related stories. Some
involving grub, some vodka and others, some great love matches.
As a child I spent
a lot of family holidays in Scandinavia, travelling around in a
Dormobile, a cross between an ice-cream van and a surfer's chillin'
So as a snotty-nosed
northern youngster, I happily wrestled with Gravadlax (salmon cured
with dill, salt, pepper & sugar), pickled cucumber (sliced very
thinly with more dill), salmon roe, meat balls and even corn on
Colin emailed in
with his own version of Gravadlax, using pink grapefruit juice,
olive oil, dill, pink peppercorns and rock salt.
starting point for home-produced Gravadlax
He basically smears
this lot on thinly sliced salmon fillets (wild ideally), before
wrapping them in cling film, plating them up and banging them into
the fridge, stacked on top of each other, for 24 hrs. Serve with
Melba toast (70's throwback time here Colin, with your curling Melba's).
Stuart in Slough
is married to a Norwegian/Korean wife, and his Norwegian nephew
eats lots of Lutefisk, which reminded Barry in Sydenham of an odd
taste in the mouth and a retching feeling in the stomach!
He was trying
to win over some Norwegian clients for a big deal and, in an expensive
Oslo restaurant, they chose the Lutefisk, a cod-based dish, after
a starter of smoked elk's tongue with cloudberry sauce.
Cloudberry is a
cousin of the raspberry and although too tart to eat raw, it makes
brilliant jam, pickles, sauces and liqueurs. Sadly he picked up
the bill, but not the contract.
Marla, an American
living in Islington, will never forget the vodka-fuelled crayfish
party in Finland, which went on for days.
Kathy in Basingstoke's
mum is Swedish, and any prospective boyfriends of hers had to pass
the sill test, which involved downing a slice of raw herring!
you believe hot steamed prawns eaten on the docks?
Gale and Ian from
Ashted told us they were married in the Ice Hotel in Sweden and
braved the freezing conditions to spend their wedding night... wrapped
in animal skins on a bed carved from ice.
But Steve Munkley's
favourite story belonged to Stuart in Uxbridge who, as a 14-year-old
went on a Scandinavian school trip and remembers eating hot steamed
prawns on the docks, rather like British kids eat chips!
local eats and recommendations:
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