Where did time go? Summer flew by in a minute, September is already here and Autumn is knocking on the door. As much as we love summer, we don’t mind this at all. There is so much to look forward to. As the final days of summer give way to the welcoming embrace of autumn in Scandinavia, a distinctive shift in the region's lifestyle and culinary traditions takes centre stage yet again. It is an enchanting transformation that combines the Scandinavian cosiness of "hygge" and “mysa” with a wonderful array of seasonal food and drink.
Autumn in Scandinavia ushers in a cooling breeze, shorter days, and a subtle shift in the landscape. The lush greenery of summer gradually evolves into a tapestry of rich, warm hues as the trees start shifting to beautiful colours of fiery red, golden yellow, and earthy brown. All of a sudden life feels like a painting. Against the backdrop of serene fjords and crystalline lakes, this natural transformation creates an enchanting atmosphere that naturally drives Scandinavian people to embrace the comforts of the indoors.
One of the most cherished aspects of this season is the concept of "hygge” or “mysa”. In Swedish there is even a particular word for the cosiness of Autumn specifically: "höstmys". It’s a concept that naturally starts occurring the moment the temperatures start to drop. This is when Scandinavians take refuge inside their homes. Many of us like to light candles and have them fill the rooms with warmth and comfort. It's a time to snuggle into soft blankets, savour steaming cups of tea or coffee, and share cherished moments with loved ones. Hygge or höstmys encapsulates the art of finding joy in life's simple pleasures, and this concept really thrives during the autumn months.
The culinary scene in Scandinavia undergoes a delightful transformation during this time of the year as well. Locals and visitors alike eagerly anticipate the autumn harvest, which brings forth a bounty of mushrooms, berries, and seasonal produce. Wild mushroom foraging is a beloved tradition, and the forest floor becomes a treasure trove of culinary delights. These fresh, organic ingredients find their way into hearty stews, creamy mushroom soups, and savoury pies that warm both body and soul. Berries, such as lingonberries and cloudberries, are transformed into delicious jams and sauces, often served alongside traditional dishes. Autumn also ushers in the season of apples and pears, which are used to create scrumptious pies and desserts. The beverage of choice during this season is often warm and comforting. Coffee, a staple of Scandinavian culture, is enjoyed in abundance, especially when paired with homemade pastries like cinnamon buns.
In Scandinavia, the end of summer and the arrival of autumn is not just about the changing of the seasons but also a celebration of the culinary delights and all the cosiness that comes with it. It's a time for savouring the simple joys of life, whether that means sharing a cup of hot chocolate with friends, indulging in hearty, homemade meals, or finding solace in the warmth and cosiness of a loving home.