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 its approaching weeks.
Today’s word is ‘Skumtomte‘ which translates as ‘Marshmallow Santa’.
January is a month when it is jam-packed at gyms up and down Sweden, usually due to the amount of food, snacks, and alcohol consumed over the Christmas and New Year period. The festive season is also one of the times of year when a lot of sugar and sweets are consumed.
One of the most popular sweets in yuletide Sweden is the ‘skumtomte’ – the marshmallow Santa. The traditional skumtomte is pink and white and strawberry flavoured. They have been manufactured since 1934, and every year over 194,000,000 are consumed in Sweden and Finland. It seems like it wouldn’t be Christmas without a jultomte.
Other sweet things that Swedes eat around Christmas are:
- Ischoklad – ‘ice chocolate’ – chocolate with coconut fat in tiny cupcake forms
- Ris a la Malta – a cold rice dessert with cream, vanilla and mandarines
- Risgrynsgröt – rice porridge with sugar, cinnamon and milk
- Knäck – butterscotch
- Kola – toffee
- Fudge – fudge
- Marsipangris – marzipan pig
- Polkagris – Candy cane
- Chokladtryffel – chocolate truffle
- Dadlar – dates
- Fikon – figs
- Pepparkaka – ginger biscuits
- Aladdin and/or Paradis – popular boxes of chocolates
So, get eating – the gym can wait until January!