Icelandic Fish and Potatoes


There are so many interesting food items in Iceland! When I first arrived in the country, I thought a lot about why I did not want to try certain foods. Did I not want to try specific Icelandic food because I thought it was morally wrong to eat it, or did I not want to try it because we eat different foods in American culture, so I thought it was weird to eat it? For example, many Icelandic people eat horses. A few weeks ago, I told a 9-year-old boy that we do not eat horses in America, and he was shocked! I have tried it before (it’s actually sustainable meat in the country, and people treat horses very well), but I do not eat it because I still think of horses as pets. Therefore, in this field note, I will tell you about a traditional Icelandic food item that I DO eat: fish, potatoes, and rúgbrauð (rye bread in Icelandic). 

What food did I try?:

This is a very typical dish that Icelandic people have eaten for centuries. It is boiled fish (cod), boiled potatoes, and rye bread with butter. 

How did I feel when I tried it?:

I actually liked this! The fish in Iceland are very fresh. For example, one night, everyone ate skata (skate in English), which looked like stingrays. To prepare this fish, people bury it in the ground for six months to ferment!