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RECIPE:

Julesild
Traditional Norwegian Christmas herring

Traditional Norwegian pickled herring .
Photo: Fiskemannen
Traditional Norwegian pickled herring .
Photo: Fiskemannen

An explosion of flavours in a jar! In Norway, you'll find pickled herring on almost every table at Christmas.

Traditional Norwegian pickled herring .
Photo: Fiskemannen
Traditional Norwegian pickled herring .
Photo: Fiskemannen

It can be made in traditional Norwegian Christmas flavours ... or how about a tasty version with tomato sauce?

Julesild (traditional Norwegian pickled herring) is usually served on (rye) bread, and can be made in different varieties.

Pickled herring in tomato sauce .
Photo: Matprat / Aina C. Hole
Pickled herring in tomato sauce .
Photo: Matprat / Aina C. Hole

It's delicious and easy to make. Try these three popular versions:

Traditional Norwegian pickled herring in the making .
Photo: Fredrik Ahlsen / Visit Norway
Traditional Norwegian pickled herring in the making .
Photo: Fredrik Ahlsen / Visit Norway

Kryddersild - Spiced pickled herring

Ingredients:

4 pickled herring filets

1 red onion, thinly sliced

Brine:

200 ml vinegar

350 ml sugar

400 ml water

Finely grated peel from 1 orange

Finely grated peel from 1 lemon

1 cinnamon stick

5 cloves

3 laurel leaves

1 tbsp whole black pepper

Source: Fiskemannen.no

Method:

1. Water out the pickled herring following the instructions on the packaging. Slice the filets into 1 cm thick pieces and slice the onion into thin rings.

2. Boil the vinegar, water, sugar, and orange and lemon peel brine. Stir the brine until the sugar has dissolved. Add spices and remove from heat. Allow the brine to cool.

3. Place the herring and onion in alternate layers inside a clean jar (you may need more than one jar). Pour the brine inside the jar and close the lid.

4. Leave the jar in the fridge overnight to allow the flavours to develop.

This pickled herring can be stored in the refrigerator for two weeks.

Traditional Norwegian pickled herring in a glass jar
Traditional Norwegian pickled herring.
Photo: Fiskemannen

Tomatsild - Pickled herring in tomato sauce

Ingredients:

4 spiced herring filets

1 onion

2 tbsp fresh dill, chopped

2 laurel leaves

Tomato sauce:

500 ml sunflower oil

100 gr tomato purée

250 ml sugar

100 ml water

100 ml vinegar

Coarse pepper

Source: Fiskemannen.no

Method:

1. Rinse and dry the spiced herring filets. Slice the filets into 1 cm pieces and slice the onion into thin slices.

2. Heat the oil in a pot, add tomato purée while stirring and bring the tomato sauce to a boil.  Remove from heat and add sugar. Stir until the sugar has dissolved. 

3. Allow the sauce to cool before stirring in water and vinegar. Add pepper to taste. 

4. Place herring, onion, laurel leaves, and dill in alternating layers inside a clean jar (you may need more than one jar). Pour the tomato sauce into the jar and close the lid.

5. Leave the jar in the fridge overnight to allow the flavours to develop.

This pickled herring can be stored in the refrigerator for two weeks.

Traditional Norwegian pickled herring in a glass jar.
Traditional Norwegian pickled herring.
Photo: Fiskemannen

Sennepssild - Pickled herring in mustard sauce

Ingredients:

4 pickled herring filets


Mustard sauce:

100 gr mayonnaise 

5 tbsp. strong mustard

3 tbsp. fresh dill, finely chopped 

Half a red onion, finely chopped

1 tsp vinegar

1 tsp sugar

Pepper to taste

Source: Fiskemannen.no

Method:

1. Water out pickled herring filets according to the instructions on the pack. 

2. Slice the filet into 1 cm wide pieces. 

3. Mix mayonnaise, mustard, finely chopped dill, red onion, vinegar, and sugar.  Add pepper to taste. 

4. Mix the herring pieces into the mustard sauce. Place into a clean jar (you may need more than one jar) and close the lid.

5. Leave the jar in the fridge overnight to allow the flavour to develop.

This pickled herring can be stored in the refrigerator for two weeks.

Traditional Norwegian pickled herring in a glass jar.
Traditional Norwegian pickled herring.
Photo: Fiskemannen

Herring is not only delicious to eat, it has also been essential to the economy of many cities along the coastline.

Herring being loaded onto the boat Sonja in 1950 .
Photo: FotoIdar/Haugalandmuseene
Herring being loaded onto the boat Sonja in 1950 .
Photo: FotoIdar/Haugalandmuseene

Rich herring shoals actually laid the foundation for the development of Haugesund in Fjord Norway.

Smedasundet in Haugesund seen from Risøybroa in 1900. .
Photo: Haugalandmuseene
Smedasundet in Haugesund seen from Risøybroa in 1900. .
Photo: Haugalandmuseene

Here, you can even attend a festival named after herring, the Sildajazz festival, one of the biggest jazz festivals in the country. 

Listen to great music, and enjoy the street parade and market!

Sildajazz in Haugesund .
Photo: Tor Arne Johannesen
Sildajazz in Haugesund .
Photo: Tor Arne Johannesen

From the fjords of the west to the north!

Large schools of herring swim all the way from the coast of Haugesund to Northern Norway, where they make a perfect snack for large orcas.

Experience the incredible wildlife in the north on a guided tour.

Orcas in Skjervøy .
Photo: Ismaele Tortella / Visit Norway
Orcas in Skjervøy .
Photo: Ismaele Tortella / Visit Norway

Get inspired

Seafood recipes

Make bacalao, salmon in lefse, and other tasty seafood dishes from Norway.

The taste of Norwegian Christmas

Christmas traditions in Norway are as varied as the country itself. Here are some of the tastiest Norwegian holiday treats.

A taste of Norway

Get more inspiration on where to visit and what to eat.

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See our selection of companies that work hard to make you happy all through your trip.

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