Watching the Swedes Advent Calendar – Dec 7: Julskinka

Welcome to the Watching the Swedes Advent Calendar. Every day, I will open a window containing a Swedish word that has something to do with Christmas and the festive season.

Today’s word is ‘Julskinka‘ which translates as ‘Christmas ham’ and is pronounced yule-hwinka (ish).

In the UK, I grew up eating roast turkey at Christmas. But in Sweden, it’s the ham that counts!

Swedes have been eating Christmas ham during the festive season since the 1800’s and many people consider it an obligatory part of the Christmas meal. Traditionally the cured ham is oven baked or boiled before it is coated in mustard and breadcrumbs and grill roasted. Here is a recipe.

The ham is often eaten with mustard and apple sauce. And the cold leftovers are eaten for days afterwards.

Many people these days don’t eat meat, and there are plenty of veggie alternatives to the julskinka from soya and Quorn hams to roasted cauliflower heads.

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