Regardless of how inventive and creative we usually feel during the year, come Christmas and long evenings while approaching the winter solstice in Sweden, you start wanting those old-fashioned dishes. There is something comforting with the very routines in the traditional preparations that you for sure know goes back into the earliest recesses of Nordic history. You can almost see the Vikings sitting in the long boats out at sea, sharing a piece of pickled (gravad) salmon and saying things like -Pass the Mjöd, Sven … and, well, who wouldn’t have wanted to be there with them on their way to pursue their peaceful trading traditions of olden days.
Dill, an essential to gravad lax.
Text & Photo © JE Nilsson, CM Cordeiro, Sweden 2016
The recipe is very simple. One part salt and one part sugar and an handful of chopped up dill. Put under pressure for a couple of days. Done. Traditionally a 6lbs canon ball is fine.
And as always, there should be something left for the Ships’ cat.