Lutefisk – It may be a joke to some, but it’s serious business. Cod is dried and preserved using lye, then rehydrated, which results in a gelatinous consistency. This method was created out of necessity centuries ago to preserve the fish to be shipped to Europe and to provide food during the long winters in Norway. These days, it has become popular to eat at Christmas.
Waffles – Norwegian waffles (vafler) are eaten as a dessert, when entertaining guests for coffee, and sold at fairs and festivals. Heart-shaped, they are served with jam and cream, brown cheese, or other toppings, but never maple syrup. (Maple syrup doesn’t exist in Norway unless it’s imported or brought from the US as a gift.)
Aquavit – Also called snaps, has a centuries-long history in Norway (as well as in Denmark and Sweden). It is flavored with caraway, dill and other spices, and often served after dinner.