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Rommegrot is a traditional Norwegian dish that has been around for hundreds of years. The term rommegrot stems from the root words, "romme" and "grot." Romme, which loosely translates to mean "thick sour cream," is paired with grot, which literally means porridge. Often served as dessert, these sour-cream-based puddings or porridge are quite rich in taste as the primary ingredients are cream, flour, butter, and salt. Though still a Norwegian tradition, rommegrot is often served during the holidays around the world as a Christmas food.
The thick, heavy rommegrot is served in a bowl or small cups, due to its richness. Often described as a cross between a gluey custard and oatmeal, this dish is topped or drizzled with honey, syrup, or cinnamon and sugar. It is occasionally served as a special breakfast dish. Though traditionally reserved as a holiday dessert, it has become more widely acceptable to consume this dish during the summer or year-round.
Although it is popularly believed that vikings were the first to enjoy rommegrot, this is likely untrue. What is true, however, is that this Norwegian dessert has customarily been consumed during weddings and other various special events, festivals, and holy ceremonies in Norway. It is often described as a jazzed up version of porridge, gruel, or pudding. Due to such common and typically inexpensive main ingredients, this recipe has persisted for hundreds of years.
For thicker rommegrot, the chef need only add more flour to the recipe. The cook can tell early on how thick the rommegrot might be, as spoonfuls of flour are ladeled into a creamy mixture as it boils on the stovetop. It is fairly quick to make, and typically served warm, shortly after cooking.
Though it may seem surprising, this dessert is traditionally served with Norwegian cured meats, such as spekemat, cured lamb, or ham. A type of bread may also be served with rommegrot, though vannkringle is popularly served on the side. Vannkringle is similar to an American pretzel.
Other versions of rommegrot are made with milk or milk and cream, as opposed to a thick cream. Regardless, rommegrot is not a healthy dish as it is quite fattening. Usually served hot,this dessert dish is generally topped with butter. When it is served, it may resemble a very thick custard swimming in a gravy or light sauce. This topping is a sweet syrup or honey of the consumer's choosing.
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