Frikadelle:Danish Meatballs with History

In the Danish food scene, the Frikadelle occupies a popular place in the hearts of Danes. Being of Northern European origin, the Danish Frikadelle is said to have originated from the German Frikadelle and the Italian Fritellia. This oblate-spheroid meatball may contain minced veal, pork, or beef. It can also be a blend of any two meats. It also has chopped onions, eggs, milk or water, breadcrumbs, oatmeal or flour, and salt and pepper. It can be eaten either hot or cold.

One of the reasons why it is a popular dish in Denmark is the fact that it can be made from lunch and dinner leftovers. Pork is the more popular option for base meat although 1/3 portion each for veal, pork, and beef mixed together has its own following. Serving a Danish Frikadelle dinner requires the serving of side dishes. Traditional choices include Danish Red Cabbage, Danish Cucumber Salad, Sugar Brown Potatoes, and Brown Gravy. These have their Danish counterparts in name which are Rødkaal, Agurksalat, Kartofler, and Sovs, respectively.

Having any leftover Frickadelle is not a problem at all. In fact, having more than enough for dinner gives way for open face sandwiches for breakfast. Leftover side dishes of course will have its part as well the next day in preparing the sandwiches. This is very much in keeping with the Danish way of not wasting food. Cooking the Danish Frikadelle is said to be a 250 year old tradition. The existence of wood fire ovens and meat grinders have made the tradition a lot easier to keep.  




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