Ditch the turkey and shelve the mashed spuds—this season, we’re looking north for edible inspiration: a Scandinavian* holiday buffet (or julbord) laden with exquisite meatballs, pickled fish, mulled wine, and spice-perfumed cookies. For our very Portland take on the traditional Nordic party—staged at Ned Ludd’s homespun Elder Hall—we’ve tapped the city’s finest Scandinavian-leaning chefs, bartenders, and even a local knighted by the King of Sweden himself. Think of it as the season’s merriest potluck—everybody grab one recipe to tackle, and report back for aquavit-infused winter revelry. Skal!
Pictured in the photo above: Red-and-white-enameled Dansk Kobenstyle pans and cookware, a midcentury classic, set a merry tone for a Scandinavian spread; psst—that casserole dish’s signature top pulls double duty as a trivet ($39.95–143, scandiaimports.com). Round out your buffet with a lineup of PDX Scan institution Broder’s smørrebrød open-faced sandwiches topped with pickled beets, shrimp salad, or gravlax. (Contact Broder Nord at 503-282-5555 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for special-order options and pricing.)
Photographed on location at Elder Hall.
*Scandinavian recipes highlight the traditional foods of Sweden, Norway, Denmark, and even Iceland (the inspiration for Led Zeppelin’s “Immigrant Song”). Non-sticklers might rope in Nordic neighbor Finland, too.