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Norwegian Etiquette


etiquette not this way
Good manners? Not this way.
Norwegian etiquette? OH, Yes, proper etiquette is important to the Norwegians and we learn that right from the start when we are small.

Did you know that dinners, as well as open-face sandwiches, are eaten with a knife and a fork? Usually one does not touch the sandwich with one's fingers," u know".


not this way
Not this way.

The fork is held with the left hand, upside down, and the knife is held in the right hand used for cutting, aiding in balancing and transferring the food onto the fork (don't forget the upside-down part).

Of course, it is a little tricky to place little green peas on a fork especially if you are right-handed - the upside-down part is a little difficult too. How about rice?? UFFDA. If you do it some other way - SORRY TO HAVE TO INFORM YOU - it is not acceptable - we must have good manners, you know.


nor this way-1
In Norway, this messy way of eating
is not proper etiquette.

I'll never forget the first time mom ordered a hamburger at some restaurant here in the U.S. She could not figure out how she could bite over the enormous bun - so... of course, being Norwegian, she gracefully used her knife and fork and all went well without a mess. I wish I had a picture to show you.

One time, when one of my brothers and family came from Norway to visit and we were at my son, and his wife's home to enjoy a Mexican dinner she had prepared.

You should have seen Maria's eyes - they got really, really big, ...when my brother Kai and the rest of the family used both the knife and fork to eat the tacos "the proper Norwegian way".


cod tacos dinner party
Norwegian Cod Tacos Dinner Party

Maria had never seen anyone using a knife and a fork to eat a taco before. Since then she has visited Norway numerous times and found out that using both the knife and the fork even for sandwiches is good Norwegian etiquette.

It might seem cumbersome to hold your fork upside down in your left hand and at the same time try to eat all your meals this way, but I guess we can learn anything we want to.

We, Norwegians, learn to juggle the fork in the left hand when we are young, so it is easy. Try it you might like it.

Check back to find other interesting facts on how we do things in Norway and more about proper Norwegian etiquette.

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