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Washington DC kids get a taste of Swedish food

Peter Vinthagen Simpson · 26 Oct 2011, 08:18

Published: 26 Oct 2011 08:18 GMT+02:00

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"This is a fantastic project that the Embassy in Washington has launched, both for marketing Sweden as a culinary nation and for broadening the image of Sweden in the United States. In the longer term it will help strengthen our exports," said Minister for Trade Ewa Björling in a statement.

The Nordic Food Day will give the pupils at 120 public DC schools the chance to taste such delicacies as Swedish meatballs and Norwegian salmon.

The Swedish Embassy in Washington is leading the project, which is sponsored jointly with Denmark, Finland, Norway and Iceland.

The project originally involved five schools but has proved so popular that it has been expanded to all the public schools in the city.

Nordic Food Day is the first international food project carried out in the city's schools, and it is hoped that it will now be followed by many more.

The Mayor of Washington, Vincent Gray, will be present during the day, as will Janey Thornton, who is responsible for food and nutrition at the US Department of Agriculture.

Story continues below…

There will also be a royal touch to the day with Prince Daniel, set to take part in discussions, together with the Nordic ambassadors.

The food will be prepared by five apprentice chefs from the Nordic countries who have won a trip to Washington in a competition.

Peter Vinthagen Simpson (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

08:46 October 26, 2011 by Kahmoudi
What a great idea! It's always good to introduce, positive new things to children.
08:57 October 26, 2011 by Opinionfool
Presumably The Local's roving unemployed "chef" Gwen Ramsey will be serving up nothing but meat+potato+brown sauce. Because, as she assured us all here http://www.thelocal.se/36610/20111007/ that is all there is to Swedish cuisine.
09:04 October 26, 2011 by Kashmiria
And off-course with Swedish tax payer money to give food to poor American....
09:39 October 26, 2011 by DAVID T
Good lord - that's 45,000 kids that will vow never to travel to Sweden when they grow up - isn't it against the law in the States to serve pig swill?
09:53 October 26, 2011 by HYBRED
What? No kabob's?
10:59 October 26, 2011 by Lukestar1991
Oh, What a fantastic idea! why dont we send, building materials and clothing too?! After all, they sure seem to need it!
11:15 October 26, 2011 by muscle
I am sure, boiled potatoes will not be considered as a dish..

but anyway :). yes its a good idea, but its certainly not a news
11:25 October 26, 2011 by Dr. Dillner
Where's the fish?
13:01 October 26, 2011 by fikatid
Swedish cuisine: Swedish meatballs.

13:20 October 26, 2011 by BillyB
"marketing Sweden as a culinary nation"

blimey why would anyone want to do that?

Swedish food makes English cuisine look great.

This is like marketing North Korea as an open and democratic country.
14:44 October 26, 2011 by gabeltoon
Great idea. High time American school kids get to find out where SWEDEN is on the map and to taste the food albeit meatballs is only a small taste of SWEDEN. If the AMERICAN education system were to teach more about the GEOGRAPHY of the world then maybe they might be more accepted in it.
15:00 October 26, 2011 by Opinionfool

There's a line in an episode of the TV sci-fi series Babylon 5 in which one of the characters says "every race has what humans call 'Swedish meatballs'. :-)
18:59 October 26, 2011 by burlison
45,000 portions of frozen meatballs, sauce and potatoes (grease, salt, starch) are a lot cheaper for the Swedish Foreign Ministry than keeping the New York consulate open for business and firing all the staff without benefits. That's ok though: Grease, Salt and Starch conform completely with new guideliness to combat obesity and I hear there really isn't much business in a tiny town like New York City to deal with.

The Swedish Embassy theme park in DC is boondoggle and a disgrace. Ever been there? It's the most expensive, underutilized piece of real estate I've ever seen.
19:28 October 26, 2011 by jack sprat
Boiled tatties and meatballs.

How unusual.

Never mind they're damned lucky they didn't throw some of that crap korv on as well.

They'll be glad to get back to their normal school dinners I reckon.
19:45 October 26, 2011 by Coaxen
The food in Sweden is, above all, expensive. I bet the food served for those American kids wasn't produced in Sweden.
20:56 October 26, 2011 by Opinionfool
My Swedish friends have always told me that prices are higher here compared to England but Back when I travelled between Sweden and England on a regular basis (specifically Stockholm and London) I noticed no significant difference in prices ofr food. Drink yes, more expensive in Sweden, but that has never bothered me personally as I don't drive booze.
02:51 October 27, 2011 by millionmileman
This is wonderful because just last week I had to contact my US Senator to override the lunatic FDA bureaucrat police (with goding from Michelle Obama) who wanted to severely restrict potatoes in school lunches because of starch! So the children would then go home to pig out on pasta and pizza!

The Swedish diet is one of the healthiest.
06:32 October 27, 2011 by rybo1
There\s lots of good things about Sweden, but it certainly isn´t the food. Poor kids!
14:10 October 27, 2011 by soultraveler3
"The Swedish diet is one of the healthiest." Comment 17

Lol, yeah right.

Tons of low quality "meat products" in the form of sausages, balls, and sticks that generally contain only 40-65% meat (this is true even with a lot of the fish products.)

Fatty, cream-filled sauces and butter based sauces.

Tons of white , high-glycemic starches. White rice, white pasta, white bread and potatoes. Potatoes can be okay if you leave the skin on but 99% of Swedes don't do that.

Also, Lördag goodis, Fredagsmys and the daily fika. Candy by the bag / bucket full and tons of chips, cookies and soda every weekend. Fikabröd is often a daily thing for people as well.

There are also more pizza, kebab, korv stands here in Sweden than anywhere else, (that I've seen at least) and they're always busy.

Sweden has many positives, but their cuisine from either a health or taste pov is not one of them.

I love that Michelle Obama is trying to get better food into the school in the U.S. It may sadly be for some, the only decent, healthy meal they get all day. It's the parent's responsibility to make sure their children are fed properly at home. That unfortunately, doesn't always happen, but isn't it better that they're getting at least 1 good meal a day then?

p..s Pizza and pasta don't have to be bad for you if you choose whole grains, veggies and lean protein. You can easily find those anywhere now for about the same price as the regular stuff.
01:18 October 31, 2011 by niilsoon
I was one of the five apprentice chefs from the Nordic countries and I can tell you all that we didn´t serve any frozen meatballs at al!. We were in the kitchen from 07:00 and made meatballs and brow souce from home made stock. We put all our love in the food! And we also served the kids salmon and dill sauce.
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