No matter whether it is geyseros, glaciers or guillemots, Iceland is a country bursting with organic miracles and one that you actually should try out to stop by at minimum at the time. With any luck , my posts from our current journey have shown just how substantially there is to see and do – the landscapes and waterfalls, the geothermal miracles and the wealth of exclusive ordeals. But maybe you noticed one particular matter missing? While we have achieved a lot of people on the way, considerably of what we did was incredibly a great deal geared to visitors and, aside from the occasional guide, most of our interactions had been also with other vacationers.
Wouldn’t it be awesome if you could practical experience the genuine Iceland for a day, or even just a number of hours? A far more reliable encounter exactly where you get to satisfy local Icelandic individuals and master a very little about their tradition and working day-to-day life, most likely about a conventional Icelandic meal. This is exactly where Dining with Icelanders arrives in.
Dining with Icelanders is the brainchild of Helga Kristin Fridjonsdottir, herself an Icelander, and owner of journey advisory Iceland Unwrapped. Iceland Unwrapped is all about connecting people today with Helga’s homeland in a much more immersive way, bringing the interactions concerning people today much more to the fore than may well be attainable with a standard tour encounter, for case in point.
Dining with Icelanders is a wholly various way to get to know Iceland and Icelanders. Helga is an expert traveller herself – possessing lived in Brazil, Austria, Denmark, Portugal and the Netherlands, as nicely as Iceland of system – and connects site visitors to Iceland with regional men and women, above a dining experience, for a truly exceptional knowledge. In our case, we ended up blessed sufficient that Helga invited our loved ones to be part of her very own relatives for evening meal at her dwelling on a person of our final evenings in Iceland, whilst this would not normally be the scenario since Helga has a range of unique hosts with which she connects her travel customers at a variety of diverse venues.
We were being very warmly welcomed into Helga’s dwelling. She is fluent in Icelandic, English, Danish and Portuguese, and returned from the Netherlands (from exactly where she experienced previously began her organization some a long time before) in 2020 to reside in Reykjavik with her partner, Mike, a communications consultant from Chicago, and teenage son, Gabriel.
We were pretty a great deal created to come to feel at residence and encouraged to enable ourselves to some appetisers that involved delicious smoked lamb and smoked salmon on buttered rúgbrauð. This rye bread would traditionally be designed in the floor, with the dough often set into a container such as a milk carton and still left in the geothermally heated earth for 24 hours, and then it is prepared.
I was also interested to consider the harðfiskur – dried fish (in this case, haddock) with salted butter as I had read through about this becoming a well known Icelandic snack. It’s Iceland’s respond to to fish jerky and has been well known in the nation for centuries… and is of course also packed with protein, nutritional vitamins and Omega 3 so rather a healthful snack, also. At the time you have tasted it, you’ll see why it’s a staple in Iceland!
It was charming to get to know Helga and her loved ones, and we had an satisfying chat about a whole assortment of topics, from mastering about how Icelanders reside and the Icelandic schooling process, to the country’s progressive electricity projects and residing with earthquakes. We even chatted about elves and road diversions, the Katla series on Netflix, and Gabby and Mike’s enjoy of Tottenham Hotspur.
For our key, we experienced cod that was basically cooked in butter, and seasoned with salt and pepper. This is a great case in point of how not seeking to over-complicate a dish pays substantial dividends as the cod was so tasty that it did not need nearly anything more.
It was served with potatoes and greens, as the conversation moved on to Icelandic cuisine, our Arctic rafting experience, the pandemic, politics, revolutionary businesses in Iceland and more. I was genuinely interested to listen to how the the latest boom in journey to Iceland was viewing the tourism industry overtake the fishing business, and nonetheless Iceland could survive from fishing on your own considering that this was demonstrated throughout the COVID pandemic.
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For dessert, we experienced pönnukökur served with jam – beautifully sensitive Icelandic pancakes that are significantly like crêpes. They were being served with rhubarb jam and whipped product and we had been demonstrated how they ended up customarily filled, folded in fifty percent and then folded all over again into quarters.
I later identified that these golden pancakes, which resemble the sun, are frequently created to welcome the to start with sunshine in late January in a celebration called “Sólarkaffi” when the solar rises higher ample above the mountains to glow its rays about the locals.
Just before we understood it, three several hours had flown by. We’d experienced a seriously pleasurable night and had been manufactured to come to feel extremely welcome we’d enjoyed an working experience that pretty couple of holidaymakers going to Iceland would at any time get to knowledge. If this sounds like something you’d delight in, be positive to get in touch with Helga. She is very approachable (in truth, I spoke to her online prior to our individual take a look at to Iceland and picked up all types of helpful guidelines), and will be only way too happy to aid you. Her Dining with Icelanders knowledge can be booked as aspect of a holistic package deal that encompasses concealed gems, off-the-beaten-monitor experiences, songs and society, as well as eating.
Setting up a journey to Iceland you? You can view a movie from our vacation to Iceland here: