Swedish Christmas Recipes



(Food for Swedish Christmas Eve)


Glogg (1).


First Course (Herring)

Pickled herring (2)

Store bought canned herring, e.g. herring in dill

Potatoes boiled in the jacket

Cheeses (Swedish grädd ost or bond ost are available in some stores in USA)

Bread: hardtack, Swedish rye or other soft rye bread

Sill Salad (3)

Drinks: snaps (ice cold aquavit) and beer


Second Course (Cold cuts)

Kalvsylta (4) with pickled beets

Liver pate (5)

Revbensspjall (6)

Julskinka (7) with apple sauce and soft prunes

Bread and/or potatoes

Drinks: beer, red or white wine


Third Course (Warm meats)


Julkorv (8) with mustard

Swedish meatballs (9) with fresh pickled cucumbers (10) and fresh stirred lingon (11)


Drinks: red wine


Fourth Course (warm fish)

Lutfisk (best microwaved) with boiled peeled potatoes, green peas, white sauce and ground allspice

Drinks: white wine


Fifth Course (desert)

Julgröt (12) with ground cinnamon, sugar and milk

Cookies (13) with coffee










  1. Glögg.


4 cups of dry red wine

1 cup of white wine

1/3 cup sugar

2 tsp. cardamom seeds

10 whole cloves

2 cinnamon sticks

½ inch fresh ginger root


Heat to boiling. Add slivered almonds and raisins (and one shot of plain vodka if desired) to each cup before serving. Strain the hot glogg through a small sieve when pouring into the cups.


  1. Pickled Herring.


2 large salted Icelandic Herrings or 4 fillets (or about 1pound of smaller salted herrings)

1 large red onion, halved, sliced and separated into rings

1heaping tbs. whole allspice, crushed

1 large bay leaf, crushed


½ cup distilled white vinegar

¾ cups sugar

¾ cups water

Clean the whole herring, removing, innards, bone and skin. Soak the fillets in water over night. Boil the brine and let it cool in the refrigerator over night. Cut the fillets into ½ inch slices across. Layer the herring pieces, the onion rings and the spices in glass jar(s). Pour the brine over the herring mixture. Pickled herring is ready to eat in 3-4 days and keeps in the refrigerator for weeks.


  1. Sill Salad.


1 whole large Icelandic herring cleaned as above, 2 fillets or ½ pound smaller fillets.

1 large boiled, peeled and cooled potato

6 pickled beets, equivalent to one 450 gm jar or can of sliced pickled beets

2 pickled cucumbers or equivalent amount of sliced pickled cucumbers

2 small apples

(¾ cup cold cooked or fried meat)

1 medium onion chopped








2 tbs. mustard

1 tbs. sugar

2 tbs. white vinegar

¼ cup olive oil

¼ cup whipping cream, whipped



2 hard-boiled eggs


Clean the herring as above and soak the fillets in water over night. Cut the herring, potatoes, beets, cucumbers, apples, potatoes and meat, if used, into small cubes. Add to the onions and mix well. Mix the marinade, first the mustard, then sugar then the vinegar and last the oil. Finally fold in the whipping cream. Add the marinade to the salad ingredients, mixing well. Pack the salad into a form and keep in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours. Turn onto a platter. Mash the yolks and cut the whites of the hard-boiled eggs and use for garnish.


  1. Kalvsylta.


2 pounds of veal shank

About 1 ½ quarts of water

(1 tbs. salt)

10 peppercorns

10 allspice

2-3 bay leaves

1 large onion pealed and sectioned.


Put the meat into a large pan. Add water to cover. (Add salt.) Heat to boiling. Skim off all foam. Add spices and onions. Boil on low heat under cover until meat is tender, 1 to 1 ½ hours. Remove the meat and let it cool. Remove bone, cartilage and skin, put back into the stock and boil it down. In the meantime, add the meat to the food processor and process until coarsely chopped. Pour the stock through a sieve. You should have roughly equal amounts of meat and stock. Add the meat to the stock and heat to boiling. Add more spices to taste. Pour into a loaf pan and cool in refrigerator until firm.


  1. Chicken Liver Pate.


¼ cup plus 3 tbs. margarine

1 pound chicken liver

2 medium onions chopped

5-6 oz fresh mushrooms, sliced

½ tsp. each pepper and nutmeg

(1/2 tsp. salt)




Melt the margarine in a 10-inch frying pan. Sauté the chicken liver until they are no longer pink (4-6 minutes). Remove with a slotted spoon to food processor or blender. Add the onions and the mushrooms to the pan, cooking until soft (3-5 minutes). Add to the food processor/blender until smooth. Pack into a loaf pan, cover and chill. Freezes well.


  1. Revbensspjäll.


2 pounds thin pork spare ribs.


Spice mixture for brushing:

2 tbs. oil

1 tbs. soy sauce

1 tsp. pepper

2-3 tsp. each of sage and marjoram

(1/2 tsp. salt)


Turn oven to 400 degrees. Brush the ribs with the spice mixture. Wrap in heavy-duty aluminum foil. Bake for 1 hour. Open the foil package and bake for another 15 minutes. Hot ribs can be served with baked potatoes. For the smorgasbord table they are cut up into pieces and served cold.


7. Julskinka


Rinse the Swedish Xmas ham you bought in cold water and wipe it dry.


Spice mixture (for an 8-pound ham):

2 tsp. whole cloves

2 tsp. whole allspice

2 tsp. rosemary

2 tsp. marjoram

8 bay leaves


Remove the rind if not already done by the butcher. Crush the spices in a mortar. Put the ham on a large piece of heavy foil. Rub the spice mixture all around it. Cover tightly with the foil. Place on oven roaster and bake in 350 degrees approximately 30 minutes per pound for a whole ham (10-16 pounds) or 40 minutes per pound for smaller pieces of ham (2-8 pounds). When the meat thermometer shows 170 the ham should be removed from the oven, it will raise to 175 after it is taken out.










1 egg

1tbs. Sugar

2tbs. Mustard

Bread crumbs


Remove any extra fat remaining on the skinka. Whip the egg with sugar and mix in the mustard. Brush the glaze over the skinka and cover with breadcrumbs. Bake in 400-degree oven until light brown, approximately 15 minutes.


  1. Boiled julkorv.


1 ring (about 1 pound) uncooked Swedish meat sausage


6 allspice berries

2 bay leaves


Rinse the sausage and put it in a wide pan to give it room to swell without touching the sides (a large frying pan works well). Cover with water and add the spices. Simmer over very low heat (add cold water if it starts boiling) without cover for about 40 minutes. Cut into one-inch pieces to serve.


  1. Swedish meatballs.


1 pound hamburger meat

1/3-cup bread crumbs

½ cup milk

(1tsp salt)


½ cup onions grated

1 tsp. sage

1 tbs. soy sauce

1 egg


Mix the bread crumbs with the milk and let stand for 15 minutes. Mix the salt (if used), pepper, grated onions, sage and soy sauce with the meat. Add the bread-milk mixture and the egg to the meat just until well mixed. If overworked it will be dry. Shape the meat mixture into small balls and put them on a baking sheet with sides that has been sprayed with oil. Bake in upper part of a 450-degree oven for about 12 minutes.








  1. Fresh pickled cucumber.


½ pound fresh cucumber

¼ cup chopped parsley



2 tbs. distilled vinegar

2tbs. Sugar

A scant ½ cup water



Cut the cucumber into thin slices. Mix the brine in a serving bowl. Add the cucumber and parsley. Mix. Refrigerate for a couple of hours, stirring occasionally, before serving.


  1. Fresh stirred lingon.


1 pound frozen lingon, thawed

½ pound sugar


Crush and stir the lingon until sugar melts.


  1. Julgröt (rice mush).


½ cup rice

1 cup water

3 cups milk

(1 stick cinnamon)


Boil rice and water for 10 minutes. Add milk and cinnamon, if used. Stir and let come to a boil. Cover and let the mush simmer on low heat (double boiler works well) for approximately 40 minutes.


  1. Cookies.


Finska pinnar (Finnish Logs) and Schackrutor (Chess Squares)


1 ½ cup flour

¼ cup sugar enough dough for both kind of cookies

1 stick + 6 tbs. margarine


1 tbs. cocoa for the Schackrutor


1 egg, whipped

Pearl sugar for the Finska pinnar

Slivered peeled almonds



Mix the ingredients for both the doughs in the food processor, first flour and sugar and then the margarine cut in tablespoon sized pieces. Divide in two equal sized parts: part 1 for Finska pinnar, part 2 for Schackrutor. Put dough 1 in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.


Divide dough 2 into two equal parts. Add the 1tbs. of cocoa in to one part. Divide the dark and the light colored doughs each into two equal parts, shaping the four small doughs into rolls of the same lengths and the thickness of or your little finger. Put them together like chess squares. Wrap into wax paper or foil and put to rest in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.


Take dough 2 out of the refrigerator and cut into four equal parts. Shape each into rolls the thickness of your long finger. Cut them into 1½-inch lengths. Brush all the cookies at the same time with the whipped egg. Mix equal amounts of pearl sugar and chopped almonds on a plate. Dip the cookies in this mixture and place on a baking sheet sprayed with oil. Bake in 350-degree oven for about10 minutes. The Finska pinnar are done!


Take out the roll for the schackrutor out of the refrigerator and unwrap. Cut into ¼ inch thick cookies and place on a baking sheet. Bake in 350-degree oven for about 8 minutes. The Schackrutor are done!


Swedish Oatmeal cookies.


1 cup (2 sticks) margarine

1 cup sugar

1 scant cup of flour

2 cups of regular (not instant) oatmeal


Blend all the ingredients in the food processor. Roll into 1-inch balls. Place far apart on a baking sheet, about twelve per sheet. Bake in a 350 oven for approximately 15 minutes.


Kokos kakor (Coconut cookies)


2 eggs

5 tbs. sugar

3½ oz (about 60 cc) shredded coconut

4 tbs. margarine, melted


Mix eggs and sugar. Add coconut and last stir in the margarine. Let rest for at least 10 minutes. Spray a baking sheet with oil. Spoon out the dough into mounds. Bake in 350-degree oven for 10 minutes.


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