Saturday, September 23, 2006

Kräftskiva times

The crayfish season in Sweden used to be regulated by law. Apparently the Swedes likes the ideas of the government telling them what to eat, and when, as they pigheadedly sticks to the tradition. Anyway, an excuse for having a party is never a bad one, so we had one. This is a while back; I just haven’t got around to writing about it untill now.

I will now, for the benefit of my foreign friends describe the set up of a so called kräftskiva:

The main food is of course the crayfish. If circumstances are good you can count on each person eating about one kilogram of crayfish at a sit down dinner. Accompanying it will be: toast, matured cheese, snaps and beer. Often you’d also serve a pie with it, to make way for a lot of snaps to be drunk, without your guests falling of their chairs.

A song accompanies every slug of snaps – a so-called snaps song. Before and after the snaps are downed, everyone around the table looks each other in the eye. To some people a true measure of etiquette - or not. (Incidentally, I just hate etiquette-snobs …)

In 1921 there was a referendum in Sweden on the issue of prohibiting alcoholic drinks. The propaganda machine for yes to alcohol presented the following poster. Famous writer Albert Engström declares the need for alcoholic drinks to stay as: “Crayfish craves these drinks”.

The result of the referendum ended up with 51% saying no to the prohibition.

No comments: