A festival bringing together dishes from various Nordic countries demonstrated the healthy eating practices of the region

A festival celebrating the traditional favourites from the Nordic countries of Norway, Sweden and Denmark was recently hosted by S 18, the 24-hour brasserie at Radisson Blu MBD, Noida. These countries are replete with the goodness of fresh natural ingredients, the bounty of the sea. The Scandinavian way of cooking harks back to age-old recipes which have been handed down through generations. The food is simple and yet replete with flavours. The produce of the land has created dishes which offer the freshest of meats, seafood and vegetables.

Chef Shaleen had spread an extensive menu with various options for everyone. There were seven variations in vegetarian salads and two in non-vegetarian.

I started my culinary journey across this land of legends with an array of fresh salads like red beet salad, red cabbage salad with orange. It was healthy and fresh with some chunks of walnuts in it. The much famed rossolli salad was a delight, brimming with various chopped fresh veggies. The authentic Scandinavian potato salad and chunks of boiled potato sprinkled with red chilli flakes suits the Indian palate as well. Gyllene pumpan ochmaple soppa — pumpkin and chicken soup — had the perfect texture and was delicious. Never expected pumpkin to blend so well with chicken.

Smoked meats are a long standing Viking tradition, which comes alive with the smoked salmon with asparagus. Bakade basa med kronartskocka stew-baked basa with artichoke stew was nice and tasty. The fish was baked to perfection. Another delicacy was the lamm rule med russin och havre — lamb roll with raisin and oats. I would say that all the Scandinavian dishes are quite healthy and nutritious as they use fresh veggies, oats, baked or grilled meats in abundance. There is also a lot for vegetarians, with sautéed mushroom with balsamic vinegar and ost potatis — cheese potato.

But the most enticing and beautiful was the dessert section. Strawberry pudding from Denmark, and Kringles — almond coffee cake, a delicacy of Norway — was superb. The combination of almonds with coffee was divine. As a cheesecake lover I tried the Mandarin orange cheese cake, another Iceland specialty and, needless to say, worth every bite.

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