Vört Limpa and porter beer with classic Svenska Kottbullar

Ever wanted to eat lots of good bread and drink lots of great beer all at once??…well, the answer lies in Vört Limpa or Swedish Limpa Rye bread. The Vört Limpa is a traditional swedih rye bread that is made during the holiday season…in other words, it’s a realy party bread! Port beer, orange peel, rye flour, carraway seeds, anise seeds…what doesn’t this beer, I mean bread have in it??!!
This bread is good enough to have its own tv commercial…I can hear it now…”Ring in the good times with Vört Limpa and port beer!”…now that’s a catchy slogan if I ever heard one!
Now, I may sound like the spokesperson for Swedish Limpa bread, but really, how can you not endorse this bread?!!


Recipe (for 1 loaf of bread)

(Adapated from The Everything Nordic Cookbook by Kari Schoening Diehl)

1/2 of a 12 ounce bottle of porter beer

1/8 of a cup of butter

1/6 cup of dark molasses

1/8 cup dark brown sugar

1/2 a teaspoon of fennel seeds

1/2 a teaspoon of caraway seeds

1/2 a teaspoon of anise seeds

1 package of active dry yeast

1 teaspoon of freshly grated orange peel

1 1/2 cups of rye flour (Bob’s Redmill)

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 cup of cold coffee


1) Mix beer, butter, caraway seeds, anise seeds, molasses and dark brown sugar in a saucepan, bring to a boil and then simmer for 5-10 minutes.

2) Combine the active dry yeast with water and allow it to sit for 5 minutes.

3) Add the rye flour and all-purpose flour and mix in with the yeast mixture.

4) Add the beer mixture in the saucepan and the grated orange peel.

5) Mix the wet and dry ingredients together and sprinkle a cup of all-purpose flour onto a surface to roll out the bread.

6) Allow the mixture to sit for 20-30 minutes.

7) Roll out the mixture onto the floured surface and roll till the dough is sticky but can be worked with. Place the bread onto a greased pan.

8) Pre-heat an oven to 300 degrees and place the bread in the oven on the upper tray. The lower tray should contain another pan with 2-3 ice cubes. Allow the bread to sit for 20 minutes.

9) Take the bread mixture out and allow it to set for 6-7 hours until it has risen.

10) Pre-heat an oven to 375 degrees and cook for 30 minutes. Check that the bread has cooked with a toothpick and by tapping the top of the bread to see that it sounds hollow.

11) Brush the bread with cold coffee, allow it to cool and serve!

What better way to complete thebSwedish experience than polish off a plate of Svenska Kottbullar a.k.a Swedish meatballs.



1/2 cup of breadcrumbs

1/4 cup of heavy cream

1/2 teaspoon butter

1/2 onion chopped

1/3 pound ground beef

1/3 pound ground pork

1/2 an egg

1/2 tablespoon brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/8 teaspoon allspice

1/8 teaspoon ground ginger

1 1/4 cup chicken broth

1 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1/4 (8 ounce) container of sour cream


1) Soak the breadcrumbs in heavy cream till the crumbs absorb all the moisture from the cream.

2) Mix the ground meats, egg and all the spices together in a bowl and add the breadcrumbs.

3) Sautee the onion in butter till brown and add the onions to the mixture in the bowl.

4) Mix in the bread crumb mixture.

5) Pinch off golf ball sized pieces from the mixture and roll them into balls. Heat butter in a pan and fry the meatballs until they are brown on all sides.

6) Preheat an oven to 350 degrees, pour in the chicken broth into the dish containing the meatballs, cover the dish with a foil and cook for about 20-25 minutes.

7) Remove the meatballs from the pan and add some more checiken broth to the pan drippings. Whisk in the flour into thwe mixture and keep whisking till the mixture becomes thick.

8) Pour the mixture over the meatballs and they are ready to serve with lingonberry preserves and vegetables of your choice!

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