Date: 28/08/2015

The taste of Lapland

Author: Vanessa
Location: Finland, Norway, Sweden

For the semi-Nomadic Sami people of Lapland, their barren yet stunningly beautiful terrain has for centuries, posed survival challenges and sparked innovation in cuisine and food preparation.

Sami cuisine relies on nature’s larder - reindeer, seasonal berries, local seafood and a few locally-grown vegetables. Waste is not an option, and consequently Sami people use the whole animal or plant. For example, the reindeer hoof is not a by-product but part of the meal. While this extreme example may either seem daunting or provoke you to give it a try, the creativity of the Sami people also extends to food preparation.

As reindeer represents the main source of nutrition for Europe’s only indigenous people, the meat comes in all shapes and sizes - dried, salted and smoked in broth, steak, sausage or stew. The most popular Sami dish called Renkok made of sauteed reindeer in a stew mix with liver might be a safe bet. A common side dish is the dearly-loved Scandinavian rye-bread, black pudding or a sauce made of the abundance berries that can be found during the summer months. Another delicacy is the tongue of the reindeer which can be eaten hot or cold and is sometimes even found in a sandwich.


Magnus Skoglöf/

Alternatively, Arctic char, trout, salmon or pike represent another major pillar in the fish diet of the Sami people. Fish is usually devoured with dill and potatoes.

While the traditional Sami cuisine mainly consists of either fish or meat the dessert section of the menu promises delightful options for those with a sweet tooth. Again only focusing on regional products you can expect a dish with Lingonberries, cloudberries or bilberries. The desserts usually come with a waffle  or traditional bread along with sweet berries. A favourite especially for children is ice-cream served with warm bilberry jam-the Sami’s favourite berry.



Magnus Skoglöf/

When you join a Sami family for dinner expect a memorable dining experience. As not only you will consume ingredients that are unlikely to be on your dinner table at home you will also tickle your tastebuds with the taste of a tradition that has been honed over centuries. A tradition that will give you an ultimately authentic taste of Lapland.

An ideal location to experience Lapland in every way possible is at the lake Inari in Northern Finland. Here the Sami will take you on a tour of the special kind.Our trips including typical Sami cuisine for the foodies amongst you and can be found at the links below.

Credits header: Stafan Widstand/



























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