Whether or not it is geyseros, glaciers or guillemots, Iceland is a place bursting with natural wonders and one that you seriously need to check out to go to at minimum as soon as. Ideally my posts from our current journey have shown just how a great deal there is to see and do – the landscapes and waterfalls, the geothermal wonders and the wealth of special experiences. But possibly you seen a single factor lacking? While we have met a lot of folks on the way, a great deal of what we did was extremely a great deal geared in the direction of travellers and, apart from the occasional tutorial, most of our interactions ended up also with other vacationers.
Would not it be good if you could knowledge the real Iceland for a working day, or even just a handful of hours? A much more reliable knowledge the place you get to fulfill community Icelandic folks and master a minor about their lifestyle and working day-to-working day life, possibly more than a standard Icelandic meal. This is the place Eating with Icelanders will come in.
Eating with Icelanders is the brainchild of Helga Kristin Fridjonsdottir, herself an Icelander, and owner of travel advisory Iceland Unwrapped. Iceland Unwrapped is all about connecting persons with Helga’s homeland in a much more immersive way, bringing the interactions among people today additional to the fore than might be feasible with a standard tour expertise, for case in point.
Dining with Icelanders is a entirely different way to get to know Iceland and Icelanders. Helga is an seasoned traveller herself – having lived in Brazil, Austria, Denmark, Portugal and the Netherlands, as properly as Iceland of course – and connects guests to Iceland with local people today, in excess of a dining encounter, for a certainly one of a kind knowledge. In our circumstance, we have been fortunate sufficient that Helga invited our relatives to be a part of her very own family members for evening meal at her home on a person of our final evenings in Iceland, even though this would not usually be the scenario due to the fact Helga has a number of different hosts with which she connects her travel customers at a wide variety of unique venues.
We were really warmly welcomed into Helga’s dwelling. She is fluent in Icelandic, English, Danish and Portuguese, and returned from the Netherlands (from the place she experienced previously commenced her business some many years previously) in 2020 to live in Reykjavik with her partner, Mike, a communications guide from Chicago, and teenage son, Gabriel.
We ended up extremely substantially built to truly feel at residence and inspired to support ourselves to some appetisers that involved delectable smoked lamb and smoked salmon on buttered rúgbrauð. This rye bread would historically be made in the ground, with the dough generally set into a container this kind of as a milk carton and left in the geothermally heated earth for 24 hours, and then it’s ready.
I was also fascinated to attempt the harðfiskur – dried fish (in this scenario, haddock) with salted butter as I experienced browse about this becoming a well-known Icelandic snack. It is Iceland’s response to fish jerky and has been popular in the state for centuries… and is of class also packed with protein, nutritional vitamins and Omega 3 so pretty a nutritious snack, much too. As soon as you’ve tasted it, you’ll see why it’s a staple in Iceland!
It was beautiful to get to know Helga and her family members, and we experienced an pleasing chat about a total vary of subject areas, from studying about how Icelanders dwell and the Icelandic education and learning technique, to the country’s ground breaking electricity tasks and residing with earthquakes. We even chatted about elves and street diversions, the Katla sequence on Netflix, and Gabby and Mike’s love of Tottenham Hotspur.
For our key, we experienced cod that was merely cooked in butter, and seasoned with salt and pepper. This is a great instance of how not attempting to in excess of-complicate a dish pays large dividends as the cod was so tasty that it did not have to have everything extra.
It was served with potatoes and greens, as the dialogue moved on to Icelandic delicacies, our Arctic rafting experience, the pandemic, politics, modern companies in Iceland and additional. I was definitely intrigued to hear how the new boom in vacation to Iceland was seeing the tourism marketplace overtake the fishing field, and however Iceland could survive from fishing by itself because this was tested through the COVID pandemic.
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For dessert, we experienced pönnukökur served with jam – incredibly sensitive Icelandic pancakes that are considerably like crêpes. They had been served with rhubarb jam and whipped product and we have been revealed how they had been customarily loaded, folded in fifty percent and then folded all over again into quarters.
I afterwards uncovered that these golden pancakes, which resemble the solar, are frequently created to welcome the initially sunshine in late January in a celebration identified as “Sólarkaffi” when the solar rises high ample above the mountains to glow its rays in excess of the locals.
Ahead of we realized it, three hrs experienced flown by. We’d experienced a truly pleasant evening and experienced been produced to truly feel exceptionally welcome we’d loved an experience that quite number of vacationers browsing Iceland would ever get to working experience. If this seems like a thing you’d take pleasure in, be positive to contact Helga. She is pretty approachable (in truth, I spoke to her online prior to our possess check out to Iceland and picked up all kinds of valuable ideas), and will be only far too delighted to support you. Her Eating with Icelanders knowledge can be booked as portion of a holistic offer that encompasses concealed gems, off-the-overwhelmed-keep track of activities, new music and culture, as properly as dining.
Preparing a journey to Iceland you? You can check out a video from our trip to Iceland in this article:
Disclosure: This put up is sponsored by Iceland Unwrapped. Our journey to Iceland was also sponsored by Helly Hansen.
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