Do you feel a little Swedish this Christmas? If you do, our food series VINTERSAGA is just what you need. It features ginger thins, saffron rolls, mulled wine and more. So do the holidays like a traditional Swede - gather together, make your home cosy and spend time enjoying good things to eat! Read More
It’s four weeks to Christmas. Petra Bragée and her family stand outside the nearly 200-year-old farmhouse they call home, just a half hour's drive from Älmhult, where IKEA was founded. Every light in the house is turned off except the decorative stars hung in windows and strings of bulbs lining the eaves. This is a favourite tradition for Petra and her loved ones.
They stand at a distance to admire the twinkling home while sipping glögg—a sweet mulled wine—and munching ginger thins, the kind of treats you'll find in the VINTERSAGA series.
"We need these things this time of year," smiles Petra.
Many Swedes build gingerbread houses for Christmas, but Petra’s family takes it to a new level. They host an annual gingerbread building competition among the neighbours.
"We’re more and more people every year," Petra says, pointing out that the competition actually isn’t that important. Instead, spending time together is what means the most. The kids don’t care about winning either. They’re more interested in eating the creations.
One of the event's perks? "It smells really good with this gingerbread in the house," Petra says.
Labouring over batches of gingerbread dough is not the only thing Petra and her family do in the weeks leading up to Christmas. They also bake saffron rolls, and head to the forest to gather moss and pinecones for decorating their home.
"It’s a quite busy time," she laughs. "But you get to spend a lot of time with the ones you love.”
Whether you make all treats yourself, like Petra and her family or buy ready-made VINTERSAGA products doesn’t really matter. The important part is being together.
Loved ones and good food. That’s the true taste of a traditional Swedish Christmas.Read less