• Sweden edition
 
New breed of crazy Swedish chefs ride wave of YouTube fame

New breed of crazy Swedish chefs ride wave of YouTube fame

Published: 06 Dec 2011 14:31 GMT+01:00
Updated: 06 Dec 2011 14:31 GMT+01:00

When someone says 'Swedish Chef' it’s probably most often associated with the verbally-challenged Muppet and his oddball kitchen antics from the popular 1970s television show.

But a group of would-be Swedish chefs from the north of the country have used YouTube to put an entirely new and even more outrageous spin on the preparation of traditional Swedish food.

Mashing vegetables by slamming them in a door and body slamming onions are just a few of the unorthodox methods employed by the creators of Regular Ordinary Swedish Meal Time (ROSMT).

And while dishes such as head-butted meatballs and face-scrubbed potatoes – often preceded by the gulping down of a heaping spoonful of mayonnaise – may leave some feeling queasy, episodes of ROSMT have been viewed millions of times since the show's launch earlier this year, making it one of the most popular Swedish cooking shows in cyberspace.

And it all started with a hangover meal.

Isak Anklew and Niclas Lundberg, both 24, were preparing some food to help them recover from an extended evening of celebrations to ring in the 2011 New Year when inspiration struck.

They felt creative, despite their diminished energy reserves, and came up with the idea to do something fun with their cooking that they could post on YouTube.

“I know Niclas from way back, and I knew he could freak out and it would come out great on film,” Anklew, who works as an iPhone developer, tells The Local.

“We were inspired by ‘Epic Meal Time’. We’ve seen a lot of their clips and love what they do.”

Epic Meal Time is a YouTube sensation out of Canada where a group of young men cook greasy food in an innovative and slightly aggressive manner.

ROSMT’s pilot episode “Spaghetti Explosion”, in which Lundberg pummels minced meat with his fists while scowling at the camera, attempted to put a Swedish twist on the Canadian show.

After first being spread among the friends of Lundberg and Anklew, the video quickly received thousands of views, inspiring them to keep going.

When ROSMT showed how to effectively grease a pan with one’s face in their third video, “Sidepork Pandemonium”, it was picked up by on the news aggregate site Reddit.com.

Suddenly, the offbeat and barbaric Swedish cooking show was a global phenomenon.

“We got 200,000 views in a day which really gave us a boost, and that pretty much started this carousel,” Anklew says.

“That’s when it went viral I guess you could say, and it was pretty obvious when it happened.”

Since then, the group's internet fame has given them little breathing space.

The number of subscribers to their YouTube channel has steadily increased, forcing the group to eat things that others might have chosen to decline.

“I like mayonnaise so it’s really not a problem to eat a spoonful like that, but I wouldn’t eat a whole jar of it,” says Lundberg, who enjoys a sizeable swallow of mayonnaise as a pre-dinner snack in each episode.

“But some things like the crayfish shell we can’t eat, that would probably be a hazard to our health.”

Anklew and Lundberg have a couple of theories as to why their rather simple format cooking show has proven so popular.

According to Anklew, the contrast between the image of Swedes as neutral and careful in most aspects of life, and the aggressive visuals of the show, adds to the comedy.

“No one really expects us to trash the kitchen,” he says.

Lundberg points to the sensibilities of an audience that came of age after the dawn of the internet era.

“We’re born into this internet generation. We spend lots of time surfing the web and I think we’ve always had an eye for what people want to see,” he says.

“If we think it’s funny, others will think so too. The best things we’ve done we’ve also laughed like crazy to.”

And they’re not only advocates of this particular type of humour, but also the format of easily accessible, short video clips.

Having studied how to make appealing YouTube media, Lundberg and team member Niklas Odén, 25, know the “dos and dont's” of the enormous virtual platform, including keeping clips short and action packed to appeal to the shorter attention span of internet media consumers.

Another reason ROSMT has proven popular outside Sweden might be the show's sporadic use of the international language “Swenglish”.

However, the main language is, and will remain Swedish, even though some viewers are requesting subtitles.

“We were strongly opposed to the idea of subtitles right from the start,” Lundberg says.

“Some even say it’s a lot funnier because they don’t understand a word of what we say. Swedish is kind of exotic in itself.”

In this day and age it’s not uncommon to receive tens of thousands of hits on sites like YouTube, but many viral videos are merely one hit wonders.

ROSMT episodes, however, have amassed nearly 30 million clip views, and almost 200,000 subscribers, and the gang is determined to keep the project going.

But it hasn’t been easy.

At the moment the five members, also including Tom Brännström, 24, and Anders Söderman, 30, live in different parts of Sweden and have different jobs, meaning the opportunity to record a clip doesn’t come as often as they’d like.

“The dream is to do more stuff and have more time for it,” says Lundberg, who is getting a masters in Cross Media Interaction Design at Umeå University in Skellefteå, in northern Sweden.

“It’d be fun to see if we could do more besides cooking and see if people would like that too. But that’s wishful thinking right now.”

So for now, most communication is done via Skype, where new ideas for tasty, messy meals flourish.

They’re still “flat broke” as Lundberg put it, but at least their YouTube success has enabled them to buy and smash food for new episodes.

Related links:

Joel Linde (news@thelocal.se)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

16:32 December 6, 2011 by lilsocks
Bork bork bork!
16:47 December 6, 2011 by uunbeliever
Without ROSMT Sweden would be cold and bleak...
16:47 December 6, 2011 by colombianska_tjej
The best you can find in Youtube
18:30 December 6, 2011 by philster61
damm lilsocks, you beat me to it
12:45 December 7, 2011 by Marc the Texan
The Swedish chef is muppet. I think that's something everyone can agree on.
15:45 December 7, 2011 by BrittInSweden
Their videos are awesome. Funniest thing to EVER come out of Sweden.
11:59 December 8, 2011 by spo10
Funny and nasty!
16:59 December 8, 2011 by Imran Akram
This is by FAR, one of the most stupidest things I've ever seen in my life and the worst thing is... a lot of people actually like it. For those of you just getting ready to pounce on me... Watch this video PLEASE!!

/watch?v=LIB4Bar_DBw

(you need to append the above part after youtube dot com in your browser)
12:06 December 9, 2011 by Shibumi
The first one of these you watch is funny, the second is amusing... and then it's just repetitive.
04:40 December 10, 2011 by Bolante007
@Imran Akram

Colors were made for people with likes. You don't like it then don't say its stupid, stop acting like a teen and move on..
22:29 December 19, 2011 by nightaberrations
Pre-dinner snack. It's good for you.
Today's headlines
Swimrun
Record win at Sweden's tough island race
Photo: Jakob Edholm/ÖTILLÖ14

Record win at Sweden's tough island race

Two Swedes crushed last year's course record at the Swimrun world championship in Stockholm's archipelago on Monday. READ  

Sweden reveals Academy Award submission
Swedish director Ruben Östlund on set. Photo. TT

Sweden reveals Academy Award submission

The movie set to represent Sweden at the 2015 Academy Awards was revealed on Monday, a film that has already won awards abroad. READ  

Amphetamines
Hidden forest drug stash leads to prosecution

Hidden forest drug stash leads to prosecution

A 53-year-old man has been prosecuted after police in western Sweden made one of their largest drug seizures in the area. READ  

Man shot dead in hunting accident
Photo: Hunter Desportes/Flickr

Man shot dead in hunting accident

UPDATED: Police in northern Sweden say a man was killed on Monday morning after what they described as a "hunting accident". READ  

Pirate Bay Swede's trial set for final stage

Pirate Bay Swede's trial set for final stage

The mother of Swedish Pirate Bay co-founder Gottfrid Svartholm Warg has told The Local about her son's "suffering" in jail ahead of the final stages of his trial. READ  

Suspected Ebola case ruled out in Sweden
Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

Suspected Ebola case ruled out in Sweden

UPDATED: Officials at a Stockholm hospital reported that they had found a suspected case of the Ebola virus on Sunday night. But the case was dismissed on Monday. READ  

Murderer on the loose after breakout

Murderer on the loose after breakout

A 34-year-old man who killed a child is on the run after he broke out of a psychiatric ward in central Sweden. READ  

Skåne floods
Huge clear up underway after Skåne floods
A Malmö bus under water. Photo: Stig Åke Jönsson/TT

Huge clear up underway after Skåne floods

Flood waters subsided in the southern Sweden region of Skåne on Monday, after flash flooding saw chaos on roads and trains at the weekend. READ  

Elections 2014
Sweden's Alliance reveals full manifesto
Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Sweden's Alliance reveals full manifesto

UPDATED: Leaders of the Moderate Party, the Centre Party, the Liberal Party and the Christian Democrats have announced their complete list of election promises in Stockholm's Nacka. READ  

Zlatan scores hat trick in PSG thrashing
Photo: AP

Zlatan scores hat trick in PSG thrashing

Champions Paris Saint-Germain thumped Saint-Etienne 5-0 as Bordeaux saw their 100 percent record at the start of the Ligue 1 season ended on Sunday with a 1-1 draw against Bastia. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Tech
Sweden's highest peak to lose title next year
Politics
How immigration became a key election issue
Society
Brit's life in Sweden becomes BBC radio show
Gallery
People-watching August 27
Gallery
Top ten false friends in Swedish
Blog updates

25 August

Hit och dit, här och där (The Swedish Teacher) »

" Hej igen! A common challenge for Swedish language students are the location adverbs hit/här, dit/där, hem/hemma etc. Some of the location adverbs come in two versions. We should use one type of location adverb when we use a verb describes where we are, and we should use the other type of location adverb when we the verb..." READ »

 

25 August

The Dollar Store (Blogweiser) »

"A dollar store in Sweden. Blog post: http://t.co/tNuuvcP1q0 #USD #greenbacks #sweden #sverige pic.twitter.com/RHFAYf7U1k — Joel Sherwood (@joeldsherwood) August 23, 2014 There’s a chain here in Sweden called The DollarStore. This name always stood out to me in a country where they don’t use dollars. I went there for the first time this weekend. They actually accepted greenbacks..." READ »

 
 
 
National
Roma advocate scoops Wallenberg prize
Society
Meet the man who made a Swedish store recall its high heels for kids
Business & Money
'How I came to run my own business in Sweden'
Politics
Expert explains why Sweden's election oozes uncertainty
National
City plays Schindler's List theme at Nazi rally
Society
For Stockholm Fashion Week, here's the A-Z of Swedish fashion
National
'Amnesiac' man avoids deportation for ten years
Gallery
Princess Estelle through the years
Business & Money
Swedish city all set for six-hour workday trial
Business & Money
Five golden rules for the Swedish job hunt
Sponsored Article
Graduates: Insure your income in Sweden with AEA
Gallery
People-watching August 22-24
National
Armed royal guards caught (very) drunk on the job
National
Sweden orders textbook on Roma discrimination
Gallery
Violent anti-Nazi demonstrations in Malmö
Society
A closer look at Sweden's five official minority languages
Gallery
See the destruction from the southern Sweden floods
Politics
'Sweden Democrats hold the key to elections'
Society
Swedes celebrate first day of smelly fish season
Sponsored Article
Find out what gives this Swedish school executive appeal
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Your finances in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Housing in Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

754
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se