An old Cold War bunker has been discovered in the depths of a Swedish mountain. After close inspection, it seems like the location was untouched after all this time.
Found in the depths of a south Swedish forest, the bunker is believed to have been used as a surveillance center when the Soviet Union and Warsaw Pact was at its rockiest. Also, it is believed to have been abandoned about 25 years ago.
Explorers kept the bunker under wraps until they were able to identify exactly what it was used for. It is a base riddled with spooky passageways. Needless to say, the investigators required flashlights to explore.
The team, Free Solo, discovered the site. Their aim is to preserve the bunker and make sure that it does not fall into the hands of random intruders. It is believed that this bunker isn’t the only one in the south of Sweden.
Amazingly, a lot of the rooms remain the same way they did all those years ago, with a crockery-laden kitchen and doors only slightly open, as if occupiers had left the bunker just moments ago.
For the people who worked at these places, they considered it a second home.
One unidentified member of the team said that the bunker represents a struggle for freedom that Sweden’s people must be made well aware of.
“You feel like the spies have just been walking around it and as if they have only just walked out of the place. You can feel it,” the 42-year-old said.
“I have visited bunkers in Sweden before but none of them have been as complex as this one,” he said. “If you stand in front of the entrance then you see it straight away, but even if you’re stood just three meters (10 ft) away you don’t see it.”
35+ Things Vikings Ate That Are Healthier Than We Thought
History has projected the Vikings culture with wars, raids, hunting, and practices that seem strange. The effect of this is that it affects how every aspect of their lives is viewed. For many, the idea of their mealtime is; Vikings surrounding a fireplace and roasting freshly hunted animals. But surprisingly, the Norse people ate foods a lot healthier. Let’s look at what their meals looked like.
The consumption of horse meat was connected to some rituals concerning Odin. Feeding on various sources of meat is a common practice. However, the absurd one is horse meat. Although in later years, the pope banned this act.
Horse meat was either boiled or roasted to be enjoyed alone or with other forms of meals in the Vikings diet. A belief is that the Norse people fed on only available horse meat. However, some research revealed that some Vikings reared horses for consumption.
Smoked Fish (Shark)
Fish, fish, fish! Fish in the diet of Vikings was essential. In whatever ways obtainable, they sought to eat fish. However, the shark fish was a bit different in the way it was consumed compared to other types like Salmon.
Believed to be poisonous, the practice was to dig a hole in the floor, put the fish in it, and place sand and stones over it to dry. After the water is sometimes drained, the fish is then hung to dry more before it can be cooked.
Yogurt sounds modern, but the Norse people have been enjoying this delicacy since forever. It’s easy to get confused since stories presented them more like hunters. However, in reality, the Vikings reared animals like sheep, cows, goats, etc., showing they manufactured dairy products.
Commonly called skyr, this yogurt is made by using stored milk. The milk is heated well and then sieved with a piece of clothing. The liquid part flows through while the thickened part is scraped as yogurt.
Kale and Pork
In some restaurants in areas used to be Vikings territory, the eating of salty pork and kale is still quite common. The pork is well seasoned with salt. Rumors have it that salt was scarce among the Vikings then because it was imported, not produced.
So judging from this, it’s most likely possible that salty pork and kale were a meal for special occasions. Usually, a bunch of kale is cooked before adding the pork to cook together – a rare but classy Norse food.
Boiled meat is a common Vikings food and diet. Unlike the common notion of roasting or even eating raw meat, the Norse people took time to cook their meals. Farmers who reared cow, sheep, and goat usually cooked them meat to eat alongside other foods.
Most times, the Vikings’ popular sauce stew is made using boiled meat as part of the ingredients to make it more tasty and healthy. Usually, the liquid from the boiled meat is crucial to cooking veggies.
Nettle soup is highly nutritional, filled with vitamins and minerals. Nettles are ripe for harvest in spring. The Vikings are sometimes known to eat poisonous leaves, according to scientific research. Although not poisonous, the nettle has a stem filled with stings, making it necessary to be careful when picking it.
How the Vikings picked this nettle may be unclear, but cooking is not the same. With herbs and spices, alongside salt for seasoning, the soup is cooked to taste awesome. The soup is still consumed until the very day.
Eating Game Birds
Although hunting big games in the likes of deer, elk and boar were common, the Vikings also hunted birds. Not just for the fun of it, but for food. Even though farmers among them reared chickens, they still loved to hunt bids of big sizes as additional food sources.
The Vikings hunted both seabirds, and types found high on trees. Bird in the Vikings diet is an essential source of protein. And being hunters, it wasn’t so difficult to get their regular dose of bird meat.
Ox is an excellent beast of burden used to carry loads and heavy materials. The Vikings used this animal in their day to day activities. But as expected, after some years, the energy level depletes, and it becomes difficult for the ox to carry heavy loads.
So, the Vikings slaughter the tired ones and add them to their meat supply for the period—a simple and conservative means of food.
Barley flatbread is one of the simplest Vikings meals to prepare. It has no special recipe—just barley flour and water. The baked bread is flat and an ideal day time food for the Norse people. Barley is nutrient-filled and common in making lots of meals in modern times.
Making rich meals has long been part of Vikings meals. Good enough, the present-day inhabitants of Norway have kept the idea and refined the recipe by adding a couple of ingredients to add to taste.
The popularity of Lambsquarters is comparable to that of spinach in modern times. Similar to growing cereals, Lambsquarters were grown in the Viking ages. Some speculation also suggests that it could have been harvested in the wild.
To cook the Lambsquarters plain is quite common. It’s commonly referred to as boiled Lambsquarters. Vitamins, iron, and protein are key nutrients the Vikings enjoyed, and they savor the well-spiced boiled Lambsquarters. Sadly, the plant is not common in the ancient period, so it’s no longer common for restaurants or locals to make this rare food.
Apple, as common today, was part of the diet of Vikings. If not for other fruits, the Vikings would eat apples all the days of their lives without complaints. Apple porridge? Yes, apple porridge!
They thoroughly enjoy all the nutrients apple has to give. Making apple porridge requires boiling the apples with little water, then add honey. Honey gives the cooked apples a lovely favor. And to give it extra taste, nettle seeds are added in moderate quantity. Simple to prepare yet healthy and delicious Norse meal.
Elderberries are some sort of berries eaten and used in the preparation of soups. The elderberry is enriched with vitamins and a good source of antioxidants. Even in recent times, some pharmaceutical companies employ these highly beneficial edibles in the production of immune system boosting supplements.
Elderberry soup is prepared by boiling the berries, then sliced apples and honey are added to the soup. Next, roots vegetables and rosehip are also added to make it more nutritious and tasty—a delightful Vikings food.
Baked Fish And Bread
This is probably the umpteenth time fish would appear. The Vikings loved to eat fish more than one could imagine. What many would refer to as fish-roll started or was also enjoyed by the Norse people. The process simply involves making dough and putting fish into it.
After the fish gets into the dough, which may be made from oat or wheat flour, both are baked like plain bread is baked. At the end of the process, the dough is opened to reveal a well-baked and moist fish.
Ancients Norse women must have had time to try a lot of recipes. Some might have resulted from trying a lot of things together. Fritters looked more of happenstance! The flour-based meal also comprises honey and green leaves.
A perfect combination of a regular meal and the veggies. It’s difficult to state if the mixture of greens and flour was baked or fried. However, it may have been done. It surely was a lovely and nutritious food that no doubt had the Vikings looking all well developed and strong enough for strenuous activities.
Chicken Stew With Ale
Whoever knew the Vikings enjoyed something as classy chicken stew and alcoholic beverages. Ale, mead, or wine is common during festivals. And to make the occasion perfect, or an evening meal complete, the chicken stew is prepared.
Carrots, chicken, and other vegetables of choice and well chopped and cooked with spices. Chicken stew is likewise common in many cultures, both modern and old, around the world. To top it all, the grain-bread can be served with this tasty stew. Why not try this lovely meal and enjoy every bite.
Hazelnut Pudding With Wheat
The pudding made of hazelnut and wheat is recreated by chefs in Norway, Sweden, and some Iceland parts. Although it now has modern ingredients like milk, cream, and more. Basically, Wheat was the major ingredient for the ancient Vikings.
Added to the wheat, this typical breakfast meal has hazelnuts crushed into it along with honey and other types of nuts to get a good taste—a dessert-like meal with healthy and low sugar content. An ideal meal many on a low sugar diet love to enjoy.
Fish? Yes, fish! In fact, the Vikings went about with fish on their raids and expedition. They prepared it well to sustain them on their long voyages, which may last several weeks. The fish was roasted, salted, and well packed to avoid decay and retain the taste.
At a point, there were rumors that the Vikings made dried fish in a certain way and sold in large quantities across Europe as “stockfish.” Overall, fish accounted for about 25% of their diet. But of course with a combination of other meals which will be examined below.
Low sugar and lots of vegetable roots is the meal of the Norse people. Vikings’ diet nutritional value is well packed in various vegetable roots. The turnips, leeks, and a couple of vegetables like carrots and cabbage are cooked with honey. The roots are cooked to a soft state. Here the use of honey comes into play.
Alongside salt and spices, a sauce-like content is prepared to enjoy the vegetable roots. Vikings diet and food are simply interesting to explore and worth the effort to take the time out to prepare carefully.
Cooking with oil has been a practice for hundreds, if not thousands of years. Human society in almost all cultures has numerous recipes that require oil to make meals taste extra fine and palatable, sort of an unwritten but common rule.
Almond oil collected from almond kernels is done by soaking the almond in hot water. Then the kernels are scalded and dried and well cleaned. Next, the oil is squeezed out of the almond—fresh, pure, and pleasant—an ideal oil for consumption—good for the heart.
Drinking Ale Rather Than Water
Drinking ale was a common practice for the Vikings. Their mealtime is not complete until the malt derivative is served. A major reason why ale was the preferred option over the water was due to the possible harm water in the villages could cause.
Ale is usually of two types—the strong version made for adults and the soft type for young ones. During festive periods, the strong ale is served mostly with mead (a sweet drink brewed from honey).
Cookies made from corn are very much similar to present-day cookies made in many diverse ways and different flours. Corn flour is the major ingredient in the production of corn cookies. Since the Vikings’ diet included bread, flour for other small snacks was a welcomed idea.
Corn cookies involve more than just flour. Almond oil and honey are also added to bring out a taste that encourages continuous eating of these rich small loaves. A perfect way to eat balanced and enticing meals.
Green soup gives an idea of something natural and healthy. This is certainly correct. Lots of vegetables go into making this tasty soup served during the festive period most times. A good combination of spinach, leek, and species of different kinds.
The Norse women took time to cook the soup for family and friends to enjoy. This wonderful blend of vegetables is well cooked to achieve great taste. In modern times, adding meat, cream, and nutmeg is common practice to add taste.
Individuals on a ketogenic diet can attest to the nutritional value of almond milk. Almond served as a snack or refreshment for the Vikings. Vikings’ low carb dietary lifestyle made almond milk a good and healthy choice of snack to consume.
Almond milk is produced like any other of their food. The process is quite simple and easy. Almonds are placed inside cold water, and sugar is added to the mixture. Then the almond is mashed to give out milk as the sugar sweetens it.
Porridge, a common and popular meal for the Vikings. Porridge is mostly eaten as dinner with meats and stew. Porridge can stem from different ingredients based on preference. As earlier seen, there is the apple type. However, the one under consideration is made from corn. As farmers, corn harvested are not eaten raw or directly from the husk.
The corns are dehusked and ground into a powdery state. The cornflour is mixed using boiled water, and well-sliced apples and nuts are added with honey to get a pot of corn porridge ready.
Strange right? Who would have imagined a fierce Norse man with long flowing hair and huge stature feeding on pancakes? Strange but true, Vikings enjoy pancakes. Especially when served with berries.
The healthy and highly nutritious wheat flour is a key ingredient with bilberries. The simple to make pancake is mixed with berries: a great taste and good source of nutrients for young and old Vikings. Until this day, the pancake and bilberries are popular in Norway and Icelandic regions and are cooked by many locals.
That the Vikings reared bees is not actually a documented fact. Regardless, honey was part of the Norse diet. Honey was an important ingredient in brewing some of their finest wines for the festive and joyous occasion.
Apart from making drinks, honey was used to complement meals like bread. In some cases, when the Vikings ate desserts( yes, surprising but true), honey served as a topping on fruits. Safe to say they enjoy and ate healthily as many other ancient people from different parts of the world.
All the Vikings did not all go on raids. Despite being part of their culture, many families stayed at home to the farm and grew food and herbs. Before modern medicine, the Norse people relied on herbs to stay sickness free or cure some. Herbal drinks or tea are quite common.
The ingredients used include hawthorn, nuts, nettle, strawberries, and more. The herb tea usually tastes good and has a sweet-smelling aroma. All the herbs are placed in a pot and cooked till the nutritional content is released into the water.
Who could have thought the Vikings were the fruit type of people? Well, the diet of Vikings included fruits of different species. At this point, it’s good to note that the Norse people were not just hunters.
They were good farmers too. Despite the almost unfavorable weather, their lands were used to grow some types of fruits possible. Fruits like apple, carrot, berries, plums, and more. When the weather is harsh, the stored fruits served as part of their meals—quite modern than expected, really.
So the Vikings ate bread? No Vikings diet food list is complete without the mention of grain bread. Grain bread is a staple diet that is usually served alongside the stew. The beauty of the grain bread lies in the ingredients used.
Honey, tree bark, wheat, and barley are key components of the bread. Sometimes the loaves are further fortified with nutrients from oats and rye. In some cases where there are leftovers, they are used when making the next set of fresh grain loaves.
The Vikings loved to drink! Even when there is water, they preferred wine and beer. And the mead was popular among them. It was served on occasions and also for regular consumption. The mead drink is made with three simple ingredients.
Springwater, yeast, and, most importantly, honey. These components are well blended to achieve a tasty drink of mead. The water is boiled with yeast, and raw honey is added to boil also. Later the cooked mixture is left to ferment for months. The resulting mead drink after months of fermentation is them served.
Some of the ancient Norse meal that has survived through time is the barley porridge. Many try to replicate the meal, although the recipes may not be quite accurate. Barley kennels and wheat flour are major ingredients coupled with honey.
The combination of these ingredients makes a tasty meal that can be served alongside fish or meats. Vikings have often put Barley on their menus.
Herbs and Spices
Travels and raids opened the eyes of the Vikings to many practices. One such is the use of herbs and spices in cooking. There’s no telling the flavors and additional taste that spices give to meals. And it’s only human to want tasty meals.
The Viking’s food preparation included thyme, mustard seeds, and cinnamon, among others. As farmers, they also grew these herbs and spices for personal use until they became popular.
Rye bread has an earthy taste different from the smooth type of conventional pieces of bread. This herbal flavored bread is low in sugar and also very nutritious. The rye bread is baked like other types of bread.
Rye bread is quite dark in color, having a brownish look of granulated brown sugar. It can be taken with smoked fish, meat soup, and stew of any sort at dinner or even breakfast. The consumption of rye bread is practiced down to this day in the present-day regions of the Vikings.
Cheese consumption was not just a norm in Scandinavian regions. It was also manufactured. Archeological findings revealed that there were tools used to produce cheese in large quantities. It comes as no surprise since they reared cows and goats. Milk from these animals was stored and subsequently used to make cheese.
The Vikings sure did have fancy meals they enjoyed alongside other types of edibles. The common cheese type was the clabber and rennet cheese. The first is produced using clabber while the latter is derived from heating sweetened milk.
It suffices to say that barley was well grown in almost all the Vikings farms. A lot of meals made with barley have been examined, yet it seems it won’t end. The Norse diet included pudding made it barley.
How is this prepared? Mushroom, water, and barely are cooked together to get a tasty pot of pudding bubbling, and when spices are added, the entirety of this sumptuous Vikings meals tastes and smells better. The simple recipe is easy to imitate when making a special bowl of pudding.
Who could have thought those fierce men and women ate eggs? Their quest to eat eggs involved hunting. When hunting birds, the Vikings also search for eggs to take home.
Using ropes, the Vikings climbed cliffs and dropped down with ropes to gather eggs from the nest—what an effort to harvest eggs. Both the elderly and the young ones ate eggs. Who could have thought something as regular as an egg could have been part of the Vikings diet.
Pork comes as no surprise considering the hunting and raiding lifestyle of the Vikings. Although not a staple Vikings meal, pork was also another source of meat for them. It no doubts formed part of the ingredients for making meat soups and tasty stews.
This cooked pork is usually prepared using spices to give extra taste alongside with salt. Also, they didn’t consume too much of fatty meals. Research has shown that some porks have very little fat content and, therefore, safe to consume.
It’s always surprising or better put as shocking to hear Vikings eating vegetables. Did they cook or eat it raw? Well, the Vikings’ diet nutritional value was rich in vitamins derived from vegetables.
As earlier noted, they cultivated vegetables like cabbage, carrots, peas, onions, and celery. In a cooking stew, the vegetables were an important part of their meals, even at large gatherings. Some cooked, others ate raw. It was a needed nutrient source considering the Norse people’s strenuous culture—they needed good food to stay healthy.
Perhaps on special nights or the early days after harvest, the abundance of food items moves the Norse women to visit the kitchen; prepare a sumptuous porridge of all ingredients to compensate for days of tirelessly working hard.
The assorted porridge combines all ingredients for making all types of porridge. The ingredients are uniquely nutritious. Plantain, spices, nuts, apples, nettle seed, and other root vegetables are included in making the tasty dish of assorted porridge. It’s a heavy blend of natural food items all well sweetened with honey and cooked well.
Eating Twice a Day (Dagmal and Nattmal)
Well, this is more of an eating habit than a type of food. Yet, it’s a unique Norse practice that many find healthy. The first meal of the day is traditionally eaten hours after waking up. The second meal is usually eaten in the evening after working the entire day’s work.
While the dagmar or the morning meal can be anything, the evening meal is mostly stew leftover with lots of meats or fish. And as a tradition, the evening meal is eaten together as a family.