Frikadeller are a quintessential Danish tradition. They are so commonly eaten that supermarkets sell mixed packs of pork and beef mince for making them at home. Everyone has their own recipe, and different ideas on what makes them work. In the South of Denmark, some people add sparkling water to the mix instead of milk to make them lighter and puffier (I have no idea if this works, it sounds like an old wives tale). I made these recently for my first overseas guests who came to see me in Aarhus undaunted by four hour train journeys, the prospect of sleeping on my kitchen floor and the exorbitant cost of just about everything you’d like to do on a holiday.
You can add in different things to flavour these or just keep them plain and traditional. The mustard sauce is not in any way traditional, it is meant to be served with gravadlax, but I have a debilitating mustard addiction (if by debilitating you mean regular sneezing due to eating too much mustard) and it does complement the pork nicely.
Photos courtesy of the lovely and talented Caoileann Appleby
- 250g pork mince
- 250g beef mince
- 1/2 large onion, finely chopped
- 1 egg
- 100ml milk
- 100-115g oatmeal
- 75g finely chopped cooked bacon, basil, or whatever else you fancy.
- Sunflower or vegetable oil
- 4 tablespoons mustard
- 1 tablespoon sunflower oil
- 1 tablespoon chopped dill
- 1-2 teaspoons sugar or honey
- Mix all the meatball ingredients together and season very well.
- Add more oatmeal if the mixture is too liquid.
- If the onion is not finely chopped enough, it will make the mixture quite watery.
- Fry off a small piece over medium heat to check seasoning, they will probably need a lot more salt than you would think.
- Form the mince into golf ball sized balls.
- Pan fry in batches over medium heat until browned all over (10-15 minutes), turning often.
- If they feel soft they aren’t finished yet.
- Alternatively, the far more hassle free way is to brush them with olive oil and bake on a tray lined with baking paper in an oven at 250C for 20-25 minutes until browned.
- To make the sauce, whisk the ingredients together into a bowl until you get an emulsified mayonnaise consistency sauce.