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RECIPE:
Lutefisk

Traditional preserved stockfish with bacon

What is that delicious smell?

Lutefisk .
Photo: Aina C. Hole / Matprat.no
Lutefisk .
Photo: Aina C. Hole / Matprat.no

It's the lutefisk time of year!

One of our oldest and most beloved Christmas traditions.

Lutefisk and accessories .
Photo: Fredrik Ahlsen, Maverix / Visit Norway
Lutefisk and accessories .
Photo: Fredrik Ahlsen, Maverix / Visit Norway

In December, many restaurants serve lutefisk, and it's common to have a lutefisklag — the Norwegian term for a get together with good friends to enjoy a delicious lutefisk meal.

Lutefisk dinner .
Photo: Fredrik Ahlsen, Maverix / Visit Norway
Lutefisk dinner .
Photo: Fredrik Ahlsen, Maverix / Visit Norway

The dish is often accompanied by beer or Norwegian aquavit, but many prefer a glass of sparkling wine or fresh eplemost, apple juice from Norway.

A Christmas dinner toast .
Photo: Fredrik Ahlsen, Maverix / Visit Norway
A Christmas dinner toast .
Photo: Fredrik Ahlsen, Maverix / Visit Norway

Many people also love the traditional accompaniments and side dishes.

Learn to make lutefisk like a true Norwegian!
Check out the recipe:

Lutefisk with bacon and peas .
Photo: Anne Manglerud / Matprat.no
Lutefisk with bacon and peas .
Photo: Anne Manglerud / Matprat.no

Lutefisk with bacon

Ingredients:

(makes 4 servings)

2 kg lutefisk (You can prepare the stockfish by soaking it in a lye solution yourself, but we recommend purchasing the finished product)

1.5 tbsp salt

800 g almond potatoes, Ringerike potatoes or Gulløye potatoes (or whatever potatoes you prefer)

400 g bacon in cubes

Source: Matprat.no

Method:

Time: approx. 40 min
Difficulty level: Easy

1. Place the lutefisk skin-side down on a baking tray or in a large baking dish. Sprinkle with plenty of salt and place in the fridge to rest for 2 to 3 hours. Rinse the salt off of both the lutefisk and the dish and replace the lutefisk inside the dish. Add salt and a little ground pepper to taste. Cover the dish with aluminium foil and place in a preheated oven at 225°C for 30-40 minutes, depending on the size and firmness of the lutefisk.

2. Rinse and peel the potatoes. Boil them in water until tender, about 20 minutes.

3. Fry the bacon in a pan until crispy.

Serve the lutefisk with potatoes, bacon, and mashed peas, or experiment with side dishes to find your own combination!

A serving of lutefisk with potatoes, bacon and pea stew
Lutefisk.
Photo: Fredrik Ahlsen, Maverix / Visit Norway

Lutefisk is not only delicious to eat, the stockfish from which it is made has also been an essential source of livelihood and survival for the people of Norway for more than a thousand years.

Cod fishing in Lofoten .
Photo: Visitnorway.com
Cod fishing Lofoten .
Photo: Visit Lofoten

Thanks to the skrei (migrating Atlantic cod), seafood export quickly became an important source of income for Norwegians, particularly in Northern Norway.

Stockfish .
Photo: C.H. - Visitnorway.com
Drying rack for stockfish in Lofoten .
Photo: CH / Visitnorway.com

You can catch your own fish on a skrei adventure around Lofoten between January and April, when the cod migrates there from the Barents Sea to spawn.

The world cod fishing championship in Lofoten .
Photo: Promo Norge Reklamebyrå / VM i skreifiske
The world cod fishing championship in Lofoten .
Photo: Promo Norge Reklamebyrå / VM i skreifiske

You can also go on a whale safari in Vesterålen and see the giants of the sea! This is a sight you will never forget!

Whale safari in Vesterålen .
Photo: Ismaele Tortella / Visitnorway.com
Whale safari in Vesterålen .
Photo: Ismaele Tortella / Visitnorway.com

Explore a Norwegian tradition!

Lutefisk .
Photo: Sara Johannessen / Matprat.no
Lutefisk .
Photo: Matprat.no

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.

Christmas the Norwegian way

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. Discover more Norwegian holiday traditions and treats.

A taste of Norway

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

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