Based on my blog from Saturday, my friend Sharon gave a great description of her experiences in eating surströmming or fermented Baltic herring. As I thought it was such a good description of eating this very pungent-smelling fish, I thought it should be shared here. Thanks Sharon!
“The first (and only!) time I tasted surströmming was the very first year I came to Sweden. My husband Tom’s parents invited us over for dinner on a chilly October day. When we arrived and started to take our coats off, we were told to leave them on as the first course was to be taken outside. When we went out to the back, I immediately understood why. A stench that nostalgically, but alarmingly, reminded me of the outdoor toilets at Patapsco State Park permeated my nostrils and I thought I would vomit.
“But I actually got the smelly fish down. Wrapped in tunnbröd with potatoes and sour cream, it didn’t taste any where nearly as bad as it smelled. If I managed to nibble one whole pigeon – head, eyes, feet, the works – in Taipei once, a little smelly fish wasn’t going to get the best of me! But once was definitely enough of this Swedish delicacy!”