Tag: Denmark

Legendary Dishes | Smør Kylling (butter chicken)

Legendary Dishes | Smør Kylling (butter chicken)

Butter Chicken with Roast Potatoes and Butter-Garlic Sauce

Butter chicken is a comfort food in Scandinavia, butter chicken stuffed with garlic takes the pleasure up several levels.

1.8 kg chicken

250 g butter

4 bulbs garlic, whole

1 small orange, whole

15 g assorted ground seasoning – black pepper, cinnamon, coriander, cumin, fenugreek, garlic paprika, sumac, salt

10 g black pepper, freshly ground

1 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 160°C. Rub chicken all over with some of the butter, season. Stuff chicken with remaining butter and garlic, seal opening with orange. Bake for two hours, remove foil. Turn heat to 180°C and roast until skin has browned, about 30 minutes. Leave to rest. Cut garlic bulbs in half, squeeze out pulp, mix with the liquid in the bottom of the casserole, pour over chicken. Serve with mashed potatoes.

Legendary Dishes | Flæskesteg med Svær (roast pork)


Roast pork in Denmark means crackling and gravy, the meat is almost incidental. The crackling must be crispy and crunchy and the gravy should be aromatic and meaty. This can be achieved with slow cooking in a tepid oven but it can also be achieved with carefully controlled cooking in a hot oven. Timing is crucial. Therefore a two kilo piece placed on a rack can be cooked at 130°C for five hours. Cooking in a preheated 225°C oven for 15 minutes to release the fat, then at 180°C for two hours, requires constant basting and is closer to the English method. The Danes prefer a slow-cooked roast on a low heat, the English a slow-cooked roast on a high heat.

  • 2 kg pork, boned collar / shoulder with thick skin
  • 2 large onions, halved crosswise
  • 25 g salt

Preheat oven to 190°C. Lay pork on onions in a deep baking tray. Cook for two and a half hours.




Legendary Dishes | Grønlangkål med Skinke (kale with ham and caramelised potatoes)


Kale cooked with butter and cream is well known in northern countries. In Denmark it forms one of the country‘s traditional dishes when it is combined with pork in some form or other and served with caramelised potatoes.


  • 1 kg kale
  • 75 g butter
  • 30 ml cream
  • 30 g white wheat flour
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • Black Pepper
  • Salt


  • 1 kg Lammefjord potatoes, small 
  • 50 g butter
  • 40 g sugar

Boil the potatoes in their skins, peel and leave to cool. Heat sugar in a frying pan over a medium heat, add the butter. When it foams add the potatoes and coat in the sugar-butter mixture. Keep the heat controlled until the potatoes are browned and heated through. Make sure they do not burn. Prepare kale. Make a roux in a heavy based saucepan, add kale and two tablespoons of water. Cook over a medium heat, adding a little more butter, finishing with sugar, salt and pepper. Serve with cooked smoked ham, pork sausages or pork on the bone.



Legendary Dishes | Fiskefarse Fiskefars (fish fillet mince)


Making a mince from fresh fish fillets is a very old tradition in northern Europe, particulary in Denmark, Iceland, Norway and Sweden. The recipe is essentially the same across Scandinavia, the modern Icelandic version owing more to the Danish tradition than Iceland’s own rich fish culture.

Fillets of cod, haddock, pollack, saithe and whiting are the usual choice of fish, but any fleshly white fish is suitable. Using salmon fillet is a relatively young addition to the tradition, and now farmed salmon is used.

In the countries that share a coastline with the Baltic sea, the mince is combined with cream and grits / manna croup and formed into breaded cakes, baked in the oven.

The mince is also made into a mousse or purée.

Eggs and milk add lightness to the mince when it is used to make fish balls.




Legendary Dishes | Leverpostej (liver pâté)


The secret ingredient in leverpostej, the Danish liver paté, is anchovy.

Eaten every day by the majority of Danes, usually as leverpostejmad – the open faced liver paste sandwich, there are countless variations, in Denmark and across Scandinavia.

A Frenchman called Beauvais, who set up a charcuterie in a Copenhagen street basement in the early 19th century, minced fatty pork belly, pork liver, onions and seasonings to produce an expensive liver paté that was adored by the bourgeoisie.

A generation later every pork butcher in Denmark produced and sold leverpostej, and a tradition was born. Leverpostej became an essential element of the smørrebrød – open faced sandwich culture.

  • 500 g pork liver, chopped
  • 480 ml whole milk
  • 375 g belly pork, chopped
  • 150 g shallots, chopped
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 100 g anchovies
  • 30 g butter
  • 30 g white spelt flour / white wheat flour
  • 25 g pork fat
  • 15 g salt
  • 10 g black pepper, crushed
  • 5 g allspice, ground
  • Cloves, ground, large pinch / Cinnamon, ground, large pinch
  • Water, for bain-marie
Grinding the pork belly, pork liver, shallot pureé and anchovies

Melt butter, add flour, then milk, cook gently for five minutes, leave to cool.

Put pork belly through a meat grinder twice, put the pork liver through the grinder three twice, then combine the two meats and grind once. Add the anchovies and shallot pureé to the mixture and run through the grinder twice.

Preheat oven to 180°C.

Beat eggs and spices into the roux. Fold into meat mixture to form a thick batter.

Liberally grease a loaf tin with the pork fat, pour in the batter.

Place the tin in a deep baking tray, half fill the tray with boiling water and bake for 90 minutes, until the surface is golden-brown.

For a smooth paste, blend the liver and shallots, then the belly, add to the batter.

For an aromatic pâté, add 25 grams of coarsely ground black peppercorns to the meat during the combined meat grinding.

Legendary Dishes | Stjerneskud Smørrebrød (‘shooting star’ open sandwich)


A shooting star because this is the most famous of the smørrebrød range of Danish open-faced sandwiches. These are the ingredients for one portion.

  • 3 plaice fillets
  • 6 large shrimp, cooked
  • 30 g sour cream
  • 15 g caviar
  • 1 slice of brown bread / dark rye bread
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • Egg, hard boiled, halved
  • 1 lemon, juice
  • Asparagus piece
  • Breadcrumbs
  • Butter
  • Cayenne, pinch
  • Cucumber slice, twisted
  • Dill, pinch
  • Lemon slice, twisted
  • Lettuce piece
  • Paprika, pinch
  • Salmon slice
  • Sunflower oil
  • Tomato, sliced
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Speed is of the essense with this dish.

Whip a pinch each of cayenne and paprika into sour cream, mix in caviar.

Bring a steamer pot of salted water to the boil, turn heat low and place a fillet in the tray, cover and leave for three minutes. Roll up.

Heat a small piece of butter in a frying pan with a splash of oil.

Break and beat an egg into one dish, put breadcrumbs in a second dish, coat a fillet in the egg, then the breadcrumbs. Fry each side, two minutes each. Repeat with final fillet.

Toast the slice of bread, butter it, place one or two small leaves of lettuce on top, followed by the fish.

Garnish with shrimp, and a large splash of lemon juice.

Spoon cream mixture on top.

Finish with the salmon rolled around the asparagus, tomato slices, twisted cucumber and lemon slices, the egg halves and the dill.

Indigenous Ingredients | Kale

It’s green it’s mean and it packs a punch

A coarse large-leaf cabbage with a curly crinkled appearance, kale is the cultivated variety of the wild cabbage native to the Mediterranean, and rich in minerals and vitamins.

The ancient Romans introduced it to northern Europe and today it is still popular in Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands, where recipes gradually found their way to the Atlantic fringe – Ireland, Portugal and Scandinavia in particular.

Curly kale is the most cultivated variety along with local varieties adapted to their environment, such as Portuguese kale (couve) used to make caldo verde.

Being the good collectors that they are, the Flemish took kale to their culinary hearts.

Kale is an essential ingredient in stoemp, a mash made with potatoes, leaf and root vegetables.

Cooked with butter and cream it forms part of the Danish grønlangkål med skinke – kale with ham and caramelised potatoes.

The combination of kale, butter, buttermilk or cream, potatoes and spring onions / scallions or leeks is believed to be one of the oldest dishes in northern Europe.

Kale has made a comeback in recent years, because the colder climates improves its flavour.

mashed kale and potatoes

  • 500 g kale
  • 500 g potatoes, whole
  • 10 leeks / spring onions / scallions, chopped
  • 150 ml cream / milk
  • 100 g butter / buttermilk
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Soak the kale in cold then warm water to remove dirt amd chase away the small spiders that love to weave their webs among its leaves.

Leave to drain for 30 minutes.

Remove stems, cut into leaves into strips then small pieces.

Bring to the boil in a little water, reduce heat and cook until al dente. Drain surplus water.

Boil the potatoes in their skins.

Cook the spring onions in the milk/cream over a low heat.

In a heavy based saucepan mash potatoes with the milk/cream and spring onions over a low heat.

Combine kale, seasoning and the butter, blend with a wooden spoon until the mash assumes the colour of the greens. Buttermilk can replace the butter to give a tangy taste.

Grønlangkål med Skinke
kale with ham and caramelised potatoes

Kale cooked with butter and cream is well known in northern countries. In Denmark it forms one of the country‘s traditional dishes when it is combined with pork in some form or other and served with caramelised potatoes.

  • 1 kg kale
  • 75 g butter
  • 30 ml cream
  • 30 g white wheat flour
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 5 g black pepper
  • 5 g salt


  • 1 kg Lammefjord potatoes
  • 50 g butter
  • 40 g sugar

Boil the potatoes in their skins, peel and leave to cool.

Heat sugar in a frying pan over a medium heat, add the butter. When it foams add the potatoes and coat in the sugar-butter mixture. Keep the heat controlled until the potatoes are browned and heated through. Make sure they do not burn.

Prepare kale.

Make a roux in a heavy based saucepan, add kale and two tablespoons of water. Cook over a medium heat, adding a little more butter, finishing with sugar, salt and pepper.

Serve with cooked smoked ham, pork sausages or pork on the bone.

Boerenkoolstamppot met Rookworst
mashed kale and potatoes with smoked sausages

Another traditional kale dish, this mashed kale and potato stew is a Dutch classic with numerous subtle variations – kale, potatoes, milk and butter the only constants.

Smoked sausages (generally Gelderse) complete the dish but it is also garnished with bacon.

Vinegar is a tangy ingredient in some of the classic preparations, a role also played by mustard while the modern versions call for dried vegetables, herbs and spices.

Leeks have also been known to find their way into the ingredients list because they add a gentle flavour to the kale.

The Dutch ‘Food Web‘ list 162 recipes.

The Gelderland smoked sausage story is told by traditional food specialists Vers-inspiratie (Fresh Inspiration).

  • 1.5 kg floury potatoes, peeled, cubed
  • 1 kg kale leaves
  • 550 g smoked sausages
  • 300 g onions
  • 100 ml milk, hot
  • 30 g butter
  • 5 g black pepper
  • Salt, pinch
  • Mustard, for dressing

Boil onions and potatoes with a pinch of salt in sufficient water to cover in a large pot, strain, retaining the cooking liquid.

Put the kale in a large bowl with the liquid, cover and leave until leaves wilt.

Transfer kale and sufficient liquid to cover it to a saucepan, cover and simmer over a low heat for 15 minutes, drain, squeeze out liquid and chop small.

Put the sausages in the remaining liquid, cover and simmer over a low heat for 20 minutes.

Mash onions and potatoes with butter and milk, fold in the kale, season. Serve with pieces of sliced sausage dressed with mustard.

Other Traditional Kale Recipes

Caldo Verde PORTUGAL kale soup
Böreği / Börek TURKEY pies (kale is a filling)
Ekşili Pilav TURKEY bulgur with greens and yoghurt
Graupensuppe mit Kasseler GERMANY pearl barley soup with smoked pork neck
Hamsi Diblesi TURKEY Black Sea anchovies with kale and rice
Kiełbasa z Jarmuż POLAND smoked sausage with kale
Ostfriesische Grünkohl GERMANY kale with bacon, onions and sausages
Pierogi / Pīrāgi / Pirogi Пироги POLAND RUSSIA UKRAINE pies (minced beef, apple, kale and onion filling)
Solyanka Солянка RUSSIA winter soup pot
Sukuma Wiki EAST AFRICA braised greens
Vrzotovka SLOVENIA kale soup
Yaini CAUCASUS meat and vegetable soup

THE GREAT EUROPEAN FOOD ADVENTURE | Berlin | Berliner Bulette | The Story of Meatballs, Part 2

The story of the bulette was featured in a major Berlin daily

Brought to the former Prussian capital by the Huguenots in 1700, the bulette is established as an institution, and now that we are in Berlin we can debate the peculiarities that make Berliners agree to disagree about ingredients and methods, then we can reflect on the meatball versions across Europe.

Berliner Bulette

  • 500 g beef / pork / veal, minced *1
  • 150 ml milk / water
  • 100 g onion, chopped small
  • 100 g soft white roll or two thick slices of a baguette, soaked whole in milk or water
  • 1 egg
  • 50 g speck (bacon) *2
  • 30 ml vegetable oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped *3
  • 1 tbsp marjoram, chopped small *4
  • 1 tbsp parsley, chopped small *4
  • 5 g caraway seeds *4
  • 5 g dried green peppercorns, fresh ground
  • Nutmeg, about 1/6 of nut grated
  • Salt, large pinch

*1 A two to one ratio of beef to pork is usual but buletten can be made with equal amounts or all of beef, pork or veal.

*2 Small cubes of bacon can be fried in onion until crisp, added cold to the mix.

*3 Garlic can be added fried with the bacon and onions, or added raw.

*4 The herbs are optional. The amount of caraway is a personal decision because of its pungent flavour.

Preheat oven to 175ºC.

Squeeze out the liquid from the buns. Add to the mince with the egg, onion, nutmeg, herbs and seasonings. Combine into palm-sized balls, about 50 grams each, flatten.

Brown in a frying pan over a high heat in oil.

This will take a couple of minutes, turning constantly.

Remove to oven and bake for ten minutes.

Bavarian Fleischpflanzerl GERMANY Bavaria meatballs

The rival to the Berlin meatball is the Bavarian meatball. Dijon mustard is the principle difference between them. Despite similarities the two recipes have different origins, and are not related to the frikadellen family prevalent throughout northern and western Europe. The same applies to the Danish frikadeller and the frikadellen of Germany. And that story comes in part 3.

  • 300 g beef, minced
  • 200 g pork, minced
  • 100 ml milk / water
  • 100 g onions, chopped small
  • 100 g soft white roll, soaked whole in milk or water
  • 1 egg
  • 50 g breadcrumbs
  • 30 ml oil
  • 25 g mustard (traditional Dijon made with verjuice or wine is favoured)
  • 15 g butter
  • 10 g salt
  • 1 tbsp parsley, chopped small
  • 1 tbsp marjoram, chopped small
  • 5 g black pepper, fresh ground

Incorporate soaked bread with the egg, onions, parsley, mustard and marjoram. Add mince and seasonings. Mix by hand.

Spread breadcrumbs sprinkled with salt on a large plate. Wet hands and take a palm-sized lump of the mixture, about 50 grams each. Form into a compact ball, roll in breadcrumbs.

Continue until the mixture is used up.

Brown in butter and oil over a medium heat. Cook for 12 minutes, turning constantly.

Meatball Combinations

ALBANIA Qofte — minced beef / lamb, breadcrumbs / bread, egg, feta cheese, flour, garlic, mint, milk, olive oil, onion, oregano, parsley, sunflower oil, seasonings

ALBANIA Qofte me Oriz-Qifqi — rice, eggs, mint, seasonings

ALBANIA Qofte Shtëpie — lamb, biscuit crumbs, onion, egg / feta cheese, breadcrumbs, milk, mint, oregano, black pepper, large pinch

BELGIUM Ballekes — minced beef / pork, braised onion, white bread soaked in milk, egg, parsley, seasonings

CYPRUS Keftédes — minced lamb / pork, potatoes, egg, onion, mint, parsley, vinegar, seasonings / cumin / oregano / garlic

DENMARK Frikadeller — minced pork, milk, onion, egg, flour

DENMARK Köttbullar — minced beef / pork / veal, onion, egg, flour, milk

FINLAND Lihapullat — minced beef, sour cream, onion, flour, egg, mustard, paprika, seasonings

FRANCE Attignole — minced pork, pork fat, white bread soaked in milk, eggs and flour, onion, pepper, shallot

FRANCE Attriaux — minced pork, liver, garlic, onion

GEORGIA Abkhazura — minced beef, pork, caul fat, vinegar, black pepper, garlic, onion, cayenne, coriander, fenugreek, salt, sumac

GERMANY Gehacktesbällchen — minced beef, onion / shallots, whigte bread soaked in milk, egg, mustard, sage, thyme

GREECE Keftédes — minced beef / chicken / lamb / pork / veal, eggs, onions, bread soaked in water, flour, seasonings, parsley, mint / oregano, thyme / garlic

GREECE Soutzoukákia — beef, spiced tomato sauce

ITALY Etruscan — pork caul with minced pork, crustless bread, wine, ground pepper, garum, myrtle berries, pine nuts, whole peppercorns

ITALY Polpette — minced beef / veal, egg, cheese, breadcrumbs, seasonings / sausage / salami, herbs

KALININGRAD RUSSIA Klopse — minced beef / pork, bread roll soaked in water, onion, eggs, breadcrumbs, anchovies / mustard, seasonings / spices

NORWAY Kjøttkaker — minced beef / chicken, egg, potato flour or starch, oats, onion, milk or water, ginger, nutmeg, seasonings

POLAND Breslauer Klopse — beef, white bread, onions, Polish mustard, egg, capers, anchovies, seasonings

POLAND Klopsiki w Sosie Pieczarkowym — minced beef / pork, etc with mushroom sauce

POLAND Klopsiki w Sosie Sery Pleśniowe — minced beef / pork, etc with blue cheese sauce

POLAND Pulpety — minced beef / pork / veal / turkey, rice, semolina, onion, hard boiled egg, seasonings

ROMANIA Perişoare — double ground beef / lamb, rice, egg, onion, parsley, paprika, flour, seasonings/mashed beans

SPAIN Albóndigas — minced pork, veal / beef, lamb, garlic, manchego cheese, scallions, thyme, seasonings (Albóndigas — in almond sauce)

SWEDEN Köttbullar — minced beef / pork / veal, onions, breadcrumbs soaked in milk, egg, parsley, pureed potato, seasonings

TURKEY Köfte — double ground beef / lamb, egg, onion, flour, red pepper paste, seasonings / bulgur, walnuts, paprika flakes, parsley

TURKEY İçli Köfte — double ground beef mince, onions, walnuts, mint, parsley, red pepper paste, pomegranate molasses, red pepper flakes, sumac in bulgur-semolina-walnut spiced crust

PLUS Anne’s Quick Meatballs + in Broth + in Curry Sauce + in Soup +

… continued in part 3.