Mag
Articles
Icelandic Christmas Traditions

Icelandic Christmas Traditions

Published December 7, 2007

Laufabrauð
The making of laufabrauð, or “leaf-bread,” is usually a family-affair taking place early in December. People gather together to cut intricate patterns into this deep-fried, thin flatbread, which is then enjoyed as a tasty snack to accompany any Christmas event or meal.

Hangikjöt
Hangikjöt – literally meaning “hung meat” – is smoked Icelandic lamb which takes its name from the old tradition of smoking food in order to preserve it by hanging it from the rafters of a smoking shed. Hangikjöt is a traditional Christmas meat, often served with potatoes in a sweet white sauce and pickled red cabbage. Mmmm…

Church & Churchbells
The main Christmas celebration in Iceland begins promptly at 18:00 on Christmas Eve, December 24, in keeping with an old Catholic custom. The ringing of the church bells of Reykjavík’s Lutheran Cathedral is broadcast on all major television and radio stations throughout the country, at which point everyone wishes each other a Merry Christmas, and sits down to eat.

Malt & Appelsín
The ultimate Christmas drink, “Christmas Ale” is created by mixing an elusive ratio of Malt and Appelsín orange soda. Although you can now buy this drink premixed, but it’s just as fun to mix it yourself, according to taste.

The Yule Lads
Descended from mountain trolls and with a mother who eats children, Iceland’s thirteen Santas are by far our most bad-ass Christmas legend. Every night for thirteen days leading up to Christmas, children put a shoe in the windowsill and the Santas come down from the mountains one by one, bringing treats each night. Naughty children receive a potato.

Walking Around the Christmas Tree
Walking around the Christmas tree is still a widespread fad at Christmas dances in children’s schools around the country, but the tradition is slowly dying out as a practice in homes. It involves holding hands around the tree and walking repeatedly in circles whilst singing Christmas carols. Hours of fun.

The Christmas Cat
To avoid, as the saying goes, “going to the Christmas cat,” children are required to receive at least one piece of new clothing in time for Christmas each year. Otherwise, the cat will eat them.

Illustration by Bobby Breidholt – www.krotborg.blogspot.com



Mag
Articles
The Truth About Fermented Shark

The Truth About Fermented Shark

by

I remember the first time I had fermented shark. Actually, I don’t. I have a confession to make: I’ve never

Mag
Articles
RECAP: Völsungasaga, The Saga Of The Völsungs

RECAP: Völsungasaga, The Saga Of The Völsungs

by

Episode three: The one with the most badass shield-maiden As usual, this story starts with some dude who is the

Mag
Articles
2015: The Year The Icelandic Indie Film Community Awakened Some More, Potentially,

2015: The Year The Icelandic Indie Film Community Awakened Some More, Potentially,

by

Ísland, bezt í heimi! The biggest film of 2015—nay, the biggest film of ALL TIME (*projected)—was Icelandic, or anyway a

Mag
Articles
Give Trash Another Chance

Give Trash Another Chance

by and

Everyone wants to recycle. Especially in 2016. It was your New Year’s resolution, remember? Sure you do. But, it can

Mag
Articles
Fun With Icelandic Names!  – Ragnar Egilsson Explains Words!

Fun With Icelandic Names! – Ragnar Egilsson Explains Words!

by

Most Icelandic names have some cool, ancient symbolism. My name, Ragnar, means something like “Soldier of God” (no biggie). The

Mag
Articles
Presenting: The Year 2015 In #Hashtags, #Gates & #Thrones

Presenting: The Year 2015 In #Hashtags, #Gates & #Thrones

by

Wow, 2015 went by FAST, huh. There was so much going on! The real world continued to turn, and to

Show Me More!