Senap, Smörgurka, and Knäckerbrod

cute red horse!

These are things I ate as a youngster without even knowing they were Swedish.  I probably should say that they all taste WAY BETTER in Sweden, but that doesn’t seem true; you can get some of the exact same packages at your local IKEA or even superstore.  They are nice pantry staples; you can buy them and forget about them for months (even if they are opened) – they will still be there for you when you get back from a trip and haven’t done any grocery shopping.  Of course, they are great in combination and even better with some västerbottenost.  Here is a run down of my favourites.

Senap ‘Mustard’ in English. Germans and Dutch also have some nice grainy mustard, but the Swedish ones have a sweetness that is hard to beat.  Not usually very spicy (since Swedes aren’t into that).  We often get the SkÃ¥nesenap, and it is pretty nice.  The jars are also nice to reuse later.  However, my ABSOLUTE favourite mustard comes from the Korpensapoteket (Raven pharmacy) in Gamla Stan in Stockholm.  It is awesome!  Still hand made in small batches from an old secret recipe, over $10 for a  tiny little jar, and only made for the Christmas season.  My parents were lucky enough to get a jar last Christmas, and most of our guests got some then.  We sadly finished ours the end of January.  Put your orders in for Christmas 2010!

Smörgurka ‘Bread and butter pickles’ in English.  My hands-down favourite made by my Nanna, and I am sure if my Mom were to make some they would be my favourite too.  The ones we get here are really nice, and come in massive jars so we don’t have to fight as often over the last ones at the bottom of the jar.

Knäckerbrod ‘Crisp bread’ in English. I have had some great ones at other people’s houses, and have tried homemade versions from Per and the costumed old-timey folks at Skansen.  The Leksand version is my favourite, in no small part due to the dalahäst on the package.

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