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Norwegians Know Good Bread Posted by on Mar 14, 2010 in Food, Traditional

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                                               brød med pålegg (bread w- toppings)

Believe me. If you go into any matbutikk (grocery store), much less bakeri (bakery) in Norway, you will be able to find dozens of kinds of brød (bread). I personally go for the tykk grovbrød (thick whole wheat bread) med nøtter og kjerner (with nuts and seeds) eller mørkt rugbrød (or dark rye bread).

I don’t like brød that you can smush up into a ball in your hand like most of the brød I find in matbutikker i USA. Of course there’s Wonderbread, which I don’t even think should be considered brød. I think if I ate a whole loaf, I wouldn’t even feel mett (full). I think half of the content is air. I like tykk, sunn brød (thick, hearty bread) that have a lot of smak (flavor) and actually fill my tummy, not to mention provide my body with næringstoffer (nutrients) it craves. There are 2 private bakerier in my town and 2 bakerier i matbutikker and I struggle to find god brød.

We have family friends that live on en gård (a farm) and they built en kjempestor mursteinovn (a huge brick oven) outside and they bake det beste brødet i hele verden (the best bread in the whole world)! They also have pizza natt (night) at their farm hver tirsdag (every Tuesday), which is out in the boonies, mind you. Again, the best-the best pizza i hele verden. Hver ingrediens (Every ingredient) (comes from the farm) unntatt for (except for) gjær (yeast) and ost (cheese), som kommer fra en gård i nærheten (which comes from a farm in the vicinity). Selv kjøttet kommer fra gården deres (Even the meat comes from their farm). And the best part is, they don’t advertise; it’s all word of mouth. It’s clear that lot’s of people opened their mouths and spread the word about how great this pizza is because they sell i gjennomsnitt (on average) 200-300 pizzas.

So back to brød, you might suggest that I stop complaining and either move to Norway if brød is really that important to me (I’ve considered it) or just bake my own! Certainly an understandable suggestion. However, I have never been known to be a good baker. In fact, I think I’m a natural at completely messing up oppskrifter (recipes)when I bake. Maybe if ta et kurs (take a class) or just watch a Norwegian do it. Until then, I wonder hvilket merke (what brand) of brød you all like? Do you secretly love Wonderbread? Country Hearth? Brownberry? What’s your favorite type of brød? Is it rugbrød (rye bread), allminnelig brød (light rye), fint brød (white bread), grovt brød (dark bread)?

And check this link out.

The Norwegian Olympic team has for the past 20 years or so had Norwegian bakers travel with the team to bake homemade, Norwegian brød that they are used to eating at home-120 loaves a day, to be precise. I think that’s so awesome. It makes sense though, right? If you eat a certain way at home, you need to eat the same way when you’re away if you’re an Olympic athlete-the body needs consistency, and good brød!

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                                                 et typisk bakeri (a typical bakery)

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About the Author: kari

I attended St. Olaf College in Northfield, MN, where I majored in Norwegian and History. During college, I spent almost a year living in Oslo, Norway, where I attended the University of Oslo and completed an internship at the United States Embassy. I have worked for Concordia Language Villages as a pre-K Norwegian teacher and have taught an adult Norwegian language class. Right now, I keep up by writing this Norwegian blog for Transparent Language. Please read and share your thoughts! I will be continuing this blog from my future residence in the Norwegian arctic!


Comments:

  1. BM:

    I have the opposite problem. I love cheap, white, bends-over-if-you-hold-it-up bread, because I love a slice of toast, and frankly, the multigrain, rock-of-fiber, used-as-building-material bread just doesn’t toast nicely.

    Even the white loff doesn’t cut it. The only bread that meats my devastatingly low requirements is “Sandwichbrød”. It even keeps for about a week.

  2. Rafal:

    Grovt brød er det beste, men beste av beste er Tyskbondebrød på bakeri i Bryne (Jærbaker’n). Det er typisk surdeig brød…. veldig bra. Jeg kommer fra Polen og vi lage brød med surdeig istedenfor gjær.

  3. Frank:

    One of the best things about Norway is the bread. Even today, with so many more grocery store breads. I, too, have considered baking Norwegian bread, but it would be easier for me to move to Norway than try to bake well. Maybe I will (move to Norway).

  4. Friedrich Hofko:

    Norge brod er de bost fra Norge,
    smakful og godt.

  5. Don hutchinson:

    But where oh where can one find it in the US
    Or even the good grain with which to bake it
    Totally seduced by the bread at the Holmekollen,I like my bread to be solid, heavy,and flavorful.
    Where can one find the flour and a good recipe?za mbpni

  6. Friedrich Hofko:

    Brød lages i mange varianter, alt fra helt lyst til grovt. Jo grovere brødet er desto rikere blir brødet på kostfiber, mineraler og vitaminer, viktige byggestoffer som kroppen vår trenger for å trives. Brød regnes for grovt når minst 50 prosent eller mer av melmengden er sammalt mel eller hele korn. Vanlige tilsetninger i brød er diverse frø, som sesamfrø eller solsikkefrø.

  7. Rudy Bratt:

    Somebody, please send me the recipe for the bread with the lakse slice in the picture.
    I have been deprived for 40 years.

  8. Lollo:

    Try Oroweat ‘Master’s Best Winter Wheat’.
    It’s hard to find but it’s very good, filling and as close to good Norwegian bread as I can find.
    http://www.oroweat.com/Products/Description.aspx?sSku=7313000140c

  9. Rudy Bratt:

    I need a recipe for the bread in the picture of a “brødskive med pålegg”. After 40 years of being deprived, I need to take the bull by the horns and make my own.

  10. Sanne:

    The Norwegian poet Jan Erik Vold has precisely summed up the whole nations apprecation for a good loaf of bread in his poem Tale for loffen- an ode of praise to the Norwegan brød. 🙂

    Tale for loffen

    Jeg vil holde en tale
    for de tykke og de smale – nei
    det vil jeg ikke, jeg vil snakke
    om loffen, vår alles venn
    i brødveien, loffen
    sprø og fersk og rykende varm like
    fra butikken, som man stakk fingeren inn i og grov ut
    varmt deilig hvitt
    loffestoff og kom opp med
    etter handelen, loff
    åpnet av papiret i den ene enden og utminert
    alt hva en tiårs pekefinger
    formår, skorpens gylne nybakthet lå vernende omkring
    og skjulte loffhulens åpning
    et stakket sekund – hva min mor
    kunne ha sagt i sakens anledning
    er glemt, levende tilbake
    står loffens varme innside, man blir tykk
    av å spise loff, sies det, det er ikke sunt – mulig
    det mulig det! men viktigere er det (som jeg tror)
    at man blir blid
    av å spise loff, spør nå det første
    blide menneske du treffer
    om han liker loff.
    Vent så bare
    på svaret.
    (Eller spør meg!)

    Jan Erik Vold

  11. DarkUltra:

    Sanne, If I’m gonna eat fast carbs with zero fiber and nutrients, I’d must be something really good, like a hot margherita (pizza!). Anything less is too wasteful.

    There is a difference betwee whole-grain and fiber. With whole grain you get the entire grain with all its nutrients.

  12. Larry Osnes:

    Anybody have a recipe for Fint Brod?