I must admit these onions were not the only things pickled pink this weekend. also pickled & fermented pinkly were these beets
and this sauerkraut (which turned out amazing btw – especially the dried cherry version!) and then there were quite a few of us who throughout the 5 hour lunch, and many a skål later were pickled various lovely shades of crimson.
I had plans to take photos of each of the 4 courses of a traditional danish lunch – but i am afraid the akvavit got the best of me and the photos at various stages were blurry and eventually none at all.
here let me explain: the courses are/were as follows –
1) fish – pickled, smoked, curried & creamed. served with chopped fresh onions, sliced cukes, eggs, potatoes, radishes, & lemons, fried onions and fresh dill. this course is also served with a remoulade* (i made it this far – first course, photo nice and crisp)
2) meat – (it was m’s job to source locally and humanely raised salami and other various sliced meats) pate is traditionally served – on our table it’s mushroom, which i make every year so that i and any other non-meat eater can enjoy this course. i dare say the meat-eaters do not feel the lack of liver one bit. sauerkraut, cornichons, beets & the above pickled onions are served here. the sliced veggies & eggs stay on the table, and of course the fried onions and remoulade* – because they bring just about everything up a notch.
3) cheese – to satisfy the danes the stinkiest cheese i could find, plus local (mass & vermont) chedder, blue, goat & sheep. and this rhubarb chutney which was a hit.
4) dessert – fresh fall fruit, citrus, whole nuts in shells, chocolate, and danish licorice. and kick ass home-made salted caramel ice cream (not traditional, made by a very good friend, and devoured quickly & cleanly despite very full bellies).
The first three courses are served with 100% rye bread aka true pumpernickel. for each course one takes thin slices of bread, cuts it in quarters on their plate and tops each quarter with whatever combination of delectables they fancy.
This goes on for hours, is all washed down with ice cold pilsner or the like. and is peppered, by joyous yells of skål, upon which everyone picks up a shot glass full of akvavit and downs it lest they be considered unfriendly or worse yet, unable to keep up.
Not all of this is reckless of course, because the akvavit pairs perfectly with the richness of the food, however it will eventually have the drinker convinced they’ve found the true resting place of that illusive taquila worm…
(apparently he heard danish worms were beauties and in an effort to go north he stowed away with some wayward caraway, the rest is history)