Iceland, the land of fire and ice, and a place I’ve never been but that has always been near the top of my wish list. The idea for this date night came when A and I watched a Netflix comedy special from Ari Eldjarn entitled “Pardon My Icelandic.” Loving it – seriously, watch it – we decided to make that our next date night.
This was a pretty awesome evening, with all of the activities being good ones, and a good mixture of food, travel, and culture. I hope it inspires you to visit Iceland from your own home while we are all still stuck in one place.
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Icelandic-Themed Date Night
Eat: Plokkfiskur and Dark Rye Bread; Mondlukaka
Plokkfiskur is a traditional Icelandic fish stew. Being so far north, Iceland has a dearth of vegetables, mainly relying on root veggies and things with very short growing seasons. And, being an island, it is no surprise fish sits at the center of its cuisine. Plokkfiskur is a stew of cod or haddock traditionally, though I used tilapia since my fishmonger was out of the others, cooked with milk, onions, and potatoes. Seasoning is simple: salt, pepper, and I added a bit of dill and celery seed. Garnish with chives, and it’s ready to serve. I also added some spinach for color and nutritional value.
Plokkfiskur is normally served with dark rye bread, so while this was part of the main course, I talked A into helping. After all, I am not a baker, and she could have been a professional. The bread was the star of the night, and perfect for sopping up the leftover stew. (It will also make a dynamite grilled cheese for lunch later on.) By the way, during times when Iceland had grain shortages, they used to use dried fish as bread, smearing butter on that. Fascinating!
Mmm, dark rye…
Mondlukaka is an Icelandic almond cake, layered with fruit jam – A used raspberry – between, and topped with whipped cream. Light and moist, it is a base that could easily be adapted to other palates with the addition of chocolate or other flavors.
Learn: The Animated History of Iceland
This was one of the best animated histories we have seen as our dinner documentary. It focused on Scandinavia as a whole, showcasing how Iceland fit into the picture. Did you know that Iceland and England fought a war over fishing rights? Neither did I, but they did, the Cod War, won by Iceland, and with only a single casualty between them.
Visit: A Virtual Tour of Iceland
If you want to know what a 10-day Iceland tour would be like, check this out. You’ll learn about some of the highlights of the country, and be able to see 360 degree photos of many of the sights you’d visit. The waterfalls, especially, are just amazing, as is the color of the ground in some of the locations – bright red!
One of Iceland’s amazing waterfalls. I want to go!
This show, in Icelandic with English subtitles, is apparently incredibly popular in the UK. After the first episode, in which a disembodied torso is found in Icelandic waters, we are kind of hooked. So yeah, an Icelandic police drama. Spiffy! It’s on Amazon Prime for those who have it.
The opening sequence of Trapped shows the beauty of the country remarkably well.
Iceland is, objectively, a beautiful country, but I hadn’t realized the depths of its cuisine, culture, or history until this date night. I hope you are inspired to have your own Icelandic (or any other country) themed date night!
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