Updated: Nov 29, 2022
The beautiful autumn sun is shining in Trondheim and there’s not even been a hint of the first snow falling. But for some reason, all we can think about at The List office is how close it is to Christmas.
Actually, there’s a great reason. While there’s plenty to do in Trondheim in the summer, we feel the city really shines as gets colder. Students flock back to the city and it buzzes with life as multiple cultural events, festivals, and concerts take place.
But it’s also the season when Norwegians unveil their mastery of ‘kose seg’ and there’s no purer form of it than getting into the Christmas spirit through delicious foods. So here are the five tasty Trøndelag treats we’re looking forward to enjoying this winter.
1. Mmm, hot chocolate
This one is a classic no matter where in the world you are, but it’s especially nice in a Christmas city like Trondheim. Grabbing a hot chocolate 'to go' gives the added warmth needed for a leisurely stroll along the Nidelva river and through the charming snow-covered streets of Bakklandet.
However, for The List team, we know we’re more likely going to be enjoying it snuggling up in some of our favourite cafés. Sellanraa, a favourite of ours, often serves hot chocolate in the winter months which is super delicious, and then places like Mormors stue and Antikvariat have the perfect cosy vibes for it.
And for some of us, it’s our first winter in Trondheim so we’ll definitely be making the rounds to find the city’s best hot chocolate — but we might also indulge ourselves and check out local chocolatiers like Trondheim Sjokolade and Jentene på tunet.
2. Christmas porridge (yes, we’re serious)
Porridge might be the most inspiring word in the English language, but julegrøt (Christmas porridge) evokes nothing but warm fuzzy feelings. Julegrøt is made up of rice, water, milk, and butter and seasoned with salt, sugar, and cinnamon.
Traditionally it’s served on Christmas eve but plenty of Norwegians have it for dinner in winter when they’re in a cosy mood. While it is a national Norwegian dish, you can make it extra special by using local Trøndelag ingredients — after all, the region is renowned for its food.
We’re, for example, curious to add the unique milk from Kilnes Gård to our julegrøt, a farm about a 50-minute drive east of Trondheim. You can actually visit the farm to buy fresh milk gathered the same morning. The milk is pasteurised, but what’s special about it is that it’s not homogenised, so it’ll surely make this year’s Christmas porridge stand out.
3. Gløgg, the real Christmas spirit
Gløgg is a Norwegian mulled wine and what differentiates it from other countries is that aquavit (akevitt in Norwegian) is added to spike the base.
Now with Norwegian alcohol prices being what they are, it might be an expensive endeavour to make your own pot. Luckily though there are great non-alcoholic recipes as well and you’re likely to find stands selling a nice hot cup at the Christmas market in Trondheim in December.
No matter whether it’s alcoholic or not, the taste of gløgg signals ‘Christmas’ and having a relaxing time off. So even if you’re still in the middle of exams or finishing up projects at work, you can forget about them for a moment while sipping gløgg.
4. The infamous ‘lutefisk’
Alright, this one is tricky. One of the quintessential Christmas dishes in Norway is lutefisk — a dried piece of fish that’s cured in lye. The texture is best described as… gelatinous, so we can imagine why some people might disagree about its supposed deliciousness.
We can’t really say it’s a ‘must try’ as most of us at The List are too chicken to try. But if you are going to try it, we suggest you do it at a good restaurant like To rom og kjøkken, but be aware that you’ll need to order it a few days in advance so the chefs can prepare it.
When we asked Roar Hildonen, the owner of To rom og kjøkken, for tips for first-time enjoyers of lutefisk, he simply said: “Take your time to enjoy this delicacy.”
5. The amazing juleøl bonanza
The craft beer scene in Trøndelag is amazing so the Christmas beer season is especially great here. Christmas beers, or juleøl, is a centuries-old tradition in Norway that dates back to pre-Christian times.
Every brewery in Trøndelag releases its special seasonal juleøl, which are often on the sweeter side but still quite rich. So there’s no better way to jumpstart Christmas than finding a cosy corner spot in a busy pub in the centre and enjoying a delicacy from one of the local brewers.
If you have any more tips or suggestions for cool things happening in Trøndelag? Then reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org!