|Mr. Johnson watches the Swedish dancers streak by|
Well, it is cod fish, soaked in lye to preserve it through a long, harsh, Nordic winter. It stinks to high heaven, and it is rather gelatinous in consistency.
|Lutefisk with butter|
I was surprised that I found it pretty good, once I got over the slimy mouth-feel of it. It tasted like fish. With butter and potatoes, it really was tasty. I could see why people preserved the fish and the delicate cod flavor this way. It would probably keep indefinitely.
|The sign says "Welcome" in Swedish|
Norwegians call it Lutefisk, Swedes call it Lutfisk. Same stinky stuff.
|Standing in line for dinner|
|My neighbors enjoying their meal|
Going clockwise from the pickled beets: There was cucumber salad, pickled herring, Swedish Limpa bread, lutefisk in the middle (I just got a small taste), potato, meatballs with gravy and green beans. There was also a cole slaw salad and a table with wine and spirits, cheese and crackers. They brought lefse around, and also had risengrot (rice pudding) with raspberries for dessert. All the food was very good.
Yummy was its name.
Pickled herring is, well, herring that's been pickled. I know it may look unappetizing, but it's REALLY tasty, and one of my favorite things. My sister-in-law makes a really yummy herring salad for Christmas dinner. You can make it several ways, for example with apples and onions, or in cream sauce, or with mustard sauce. I once went to a party where there were four different pickled herring salads served with the meal. They were all delicious.
|The Accordion Player accompanied the Swedish Dancers who performed|
The dancers performed several dances, Danish, Swedish and even a British folk dance. It was lovely and fun to watch them. Then, the real fun began!
The dancers wove through the audience, dragging audience members to their feet and forcing them to perform with them!
They dragged audience members to their feet and gently cajoled them into joining them.
|They began gathering at the dance area|
|People of all different ages participated!|
|You can catch a little of the Swedish Dancers' costumes in some of these photos.|
I regret not stopping them and just taking photos of their traditional clothing!
|A controlled chaos erupted!|
|My friends Ray and David both got nabbed by the dancers for this tutorial|
|It's hard to get good photos when everyone is moving!|
This kind of folk dancing is akin to our square dancing. It's a good way for people to get to know one another.
|Ray twirls his partner|
|The Johnsons sat at our table|
|Christmas gifts for sale|
There were several tables set up with Scandinavian Christmas gifts for sale.
|I love these little dolls|
The picture on the left shows the boy bearing the lutefisk barrel and struggling with the smell!
We had such a fun time at this event. It was a good way to kick off the holiday season - which is coming way too quickly for my taste this year!
I was so grateful my friends were willing to come with me! Thanks, everyone!
To discover more about the Vasa Order of America, go to www.vasaorder.com.
Photos: ME, and R Fry