Saturday, December 9, 2017

Haggis You Say? Haggis Laddy? Master Butcher Says It's Not Even Scots. A 'Present' From The Vikings.

Wulf Anson

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Iceland Magazine
Good God!
If Vikings were eating Haggis too they were even tougher than we suspected after 30 years of reading every scrap of the original Sagas, Shorter Tales, and Fragments of Old Poems we could get our hands on!

Icelandic “Slátur” A Scottish butcher argues the Scottish national dish, Haggis, was originally brought to Scotland by Vikings, making it a descendant of the Viking delicacy still eaten in Iceland, slátur. Photo/Arnþór Birkisson.

A Scottish butcher who has spent the past few years researching Haggis recipes argues it dates back to the Viking invaders of the British Isles the UK newspaper The Telegraph reports. The paper argues the research of award-winning Scottish butcher Joe Callaghan, who has spent the last three years studying haggis shows “Scotland’s national dish is an ‘imposter’… invented by Vikings”. Callaghan also argues the original Scottish ingredient is deer, not sheep.

The "national dish of Scotand", invented by Vikings
Haggis is a dish very similar to the Icelandic delicacy slátur: A sausage made by stuffing a sheep's stomach with diced innards of sheep, liver as well as lungs and heart, mixed with a oatmeal, onion, pieces of sheep suet (solid white fat) as well as seasoning. Haggis is considered the “national dish” of Scotland, occupying an important place in Scottish culture and national identity.

Read more: Food of the Vikings: How to make authentic Icelandic delicacy Slátur (Slaughter)

The origins of Haggis are not definitely known, but many scots have assumed it must be of Scottish origin. The oldest known recipe of Haggis dates to around 1430, a cookbook published in Lancashire, Liber Cure Cocorum, which mentions “hagws of a schepe”. But the inhabitants of Lancashire, and of course Scotland, originally learned to cook Haggis from the Vikings who invaded, conquered and colonized large parts of the British isles in the 9th and 10th centuries.

Haggis simply means minced meat
The Telegraph points out several noted food writers and chefs have argued haggis is most likely Norse in origin. Among the proof is the argument that the word haggis actually comes from the Old Norse word haggw, which means to hack into pieces. The modern Icelandic noun hakk, which means something which has been minced (used for minced meat, for example), and the verb "höggva" are derived from the same root.

Read more: The Vikings left their mark on the European map: Here is our guide to help you find them

“Scotland’s national dish, as it is widely known, is an imposter. The real national dish is staggis, and always has been,” The Telegraph quotes Callaghan, who has developed a deer-based haggis recipe he calls “staggis”: “Deer is an indigenous species in Scotland,” he said. “The Vikings brought haggis to Scotland, we are sure of this. My recipe is based on the original Viking recipe, made with venison plucks, which I have tweaked a bit so it’s unique to me."

Scotland's National Dish Is An Imposter And Was Invented By Vikings, Claims Master Butcher  

As if the Lutefisk weren't enough!

In the Scandinavian Nations of Wisconsin and Minnesota to this very day the utterly fearless inhabitants engage in a ritual designed to prove to themselves and the world that they are still through and through, Viking Tough. And the keyword is 'Through'. 

That ritual is the Eating of the Lutefisk, though it might as aptly be known as the Running of the Lutefisk and is recommended to be trialed in a facility with at least two, and depending on the size of the party the more the better, working bathrooms. 

Lutefisk has been popularized as Cod Soaked in Plutonium, and a Weapon of Mass Destruction which "Tastes Like Python", (though where and how Vikings of a thousand years ago procured and refined Plutonium remains one of those mysteries archeologists may never unravel, kind of like discovering the owner's manual detailing the exact reconstruction blueprints that were supposed to be in the glove boxes of previously excavated Viking Longships).

Salted Cod, air dried to a pungency to run off stray dogs and rabid skunks, is then soaked in water, then soaked in lye, yes, drain cleaner, and soaked in water again to stave off its immediate lethality in trade for an intestinal cleansing of a thoroughness which modern laxatives have yet to achieve.

So just how caustic is Lutefisk? Instructions for cooking and eating Lutefisk warn in no uncertain terms that stainless steel utensils should be used because Lutefisk will ruin your sterling silver.

The Wikipedia Entry claims that the first recorded mention of Lutefisk doesn't appear until the year 1540 in a letter to Swedish King Gustav the 1st, while others try to blame its invention on the people of the Netherlands. If the Dutch invented Lutefisk why are the Wisconsiners, Minnesotans, Norwegians and Swedes the ones still keeping its ordeal alive, and giving their drains an annual scouring with it? 

If the Dutch were actually tough enough to survive Inventing and Running the Lutefisk gantlet, how come it was the Scandahoovians who beat them to discovering and conquering Wisconsin? 

Ya, You Betcha!

Here's a chant, of sorts, commemorating the Christmas Lutefisk from,

Old Lutheran, Center For Lutheran Pride (but not too proud)

Lutefisk Lament

Charlie Boone & Roger Erickson

'Twas the night before Christmas with things all a bustle
As Mama got set for the Christmas Eve tussle.
Aunts, uncles and cousins would soon be arriving
With stomachs all ready for Christmas Eve dining.
While I sat alone with a feeling of dread,
As visions of lutefisk danced in my head.
The thought of the smell made my eyeballs start burning.
The thought of the taste set my stomach to churning.
For I'm one of those who good Swedes rebuff:
A Scandahoovian boy who can't stand the stuff.

Each year, however, I played at the game
to spare mama and papa the undying shame.
I must bear up bravely, I can't take the risk of relatives knowing I hate lutefisk.
I know they would spurn me, my presents withhold,
if the unthinkable, unspeakable truth they were told.
Then out in the yard I heard such a clatter,
I jumped up to see what was the matter.
There in the snow, all in a jumble,
three of my uncles had taken a tumble.

My aunts, as usual, gave them "what for",
and soon they were up and through the door.
Then with talk, and more cheer,
an hour was passed as Mama finished the Christmas repast.
From out in the kitchen an odor came stealing,
that fairly set my senses to reeling.
The smell of lutefisk creeped down the hall
and wilted a plant in a pot on the wall.
The others reacted as though they were smitten,
while the aroma laid low my small helpless kitten.
Uncles Oscar and Lars said, "Oh, that smells yummy,"
and Kermit's eyes glittered while he patted his tummy.

The scent skipped off the ceiling and bounced off the door,
and the bird in the cuckoo clock fell on the floor.
Mama announced dinner by ringing a bell.
They pushed to the table with a yump and a yell.
I lifted my eyes to heaven and sighed,
and a rose on the wallpaper withered and died.
With wooden legs I found my chair
and sat in silence with an unseeing stare.
Most of the food was already in place;
there remained only to fill the lutefisks space.
Then Mama came proudly with a bowl on a trivet.
You would have thought the crown jewels were in it.

She placed it carefully down and took her seat,
and Papa said Grace before we could eat.
It seemed to me, with my whirling head,
the shortest prayer he ever had said.
Then Mama lifted the cover on the steaming dish,
and I was face to face with the quivering fish.
"Me first," I heard Uncle Kermit call,
while I watched the paint peel off the wall.

The plates were passed for Papa to fill.
I waited in agony between fever and chill.
He would dip in the spoon and hold it up high.
As it oozed on the plates, I thought I would die.
Then came my plate, and to my feverish brain
there seemed enough lutefisk to derail a train.
It looked like a mountain of congealing glue:
oddly transparent, yet discolored, the hue.
With butter and cream sauce I tried to conceal it;
I salted and peppered, but the smell still revealed it.
I drummed up my courage, I tried to be bold.
Mama reminds me, "Eat, before it gets cold."

I decided to face it, "Uff da," I sighed.
"Uff da, indeed," my stomach replied.
Then I summoned that resolve for which every breed is known.
My hand took the fork as with a mind of its own.
And with reckless abandon that lutefisk I ate,
within twenty seconds I'd cleaned my plate.
Uncle Kermit flashed me an ear-to-ear grin,
as butter and cream sauce dripped from his chin.
Then to my great shock, he whispered in my ear:
"I'm sure glad this is over for another year!"

It was then I learned a great and wonderful truth,
that Swedes and Norwegians, from old men to youth,
must each pay their dues to have the great joy
of being known as a good Scandahoovian boy.

And so to you all, as you face the great test:
Happy Christmas to you, and to you all the best.

Here's another page of Lutefisk Celebration from,

Prophecy Fellowship who've also graciously archived the following story for you.

Newsweek Lutefisk Story Sparks Fury
May 19, 2005 23:14 PDT

Decorah, IA - The debris-strewn streets of this remote Midwestern
hamlet remain under a tense 24-hour curfew tonight, following weekend demonstrations by rock- and figurine-throwing Lutheran farm wives that left over 200 people injured and leveled the Whippy Dip dairy freeze. The rioting appeared to be prompted, in part, by a report in Newsweek magazine claiming military guards at Spirit Lake's notorious Okoboji internment center had flushed lutefisk down prison toilets.

Newsweek's late announcement of a retraction seems to have done
little to quell the inflamed passions of Lutheran insurgents in the
region, as outbreaks of violent mailbox bashings and cow tippings
have been reported from Bowbells, North Dakota to Pekin, Illinois.

Whether the violence was triggered by Newsweek's report of lutefisk desecration or frustration over chronic shortages of Beanie Babies and Old Style, one thing seems certain – occupying U.S. troops face a steep road to reestablish trust in this tinderbox of ancient hatreds and delicious dairy products. Some analysts say the latest outbreak represents the most vexing challenge to US strategy since its invasion the region three years ago.

"It could be months before we get the area back under control," said Brigadier Gen. Glen Hastings of the US Army's Southern Minnesota Command. "We're hoping the tractor pull and swap meet seasons will help calm down some of the violent elements."

`Campground of Evil'

Military efforts to stabilize the violent ethnic Protestantism of the
region have had a mixed record of success. U.S. paratroopers first
landed along the Iowa/Minnesota border in early 2002 to root out
extremist Uff Da militants, followers of the charismatic Lutheran
cleric Pastor Duane Gunderson. Despite fears of being bogged down in the harsh Mankato winter, troops encountered little resistance, save sporadic eggings from ill-equipped insurgents atop the grain elevators of local cornlords. U.S. forces achieved swift success, taking as many as 1,500 Lutheran rebels into custody and bringing a momentary measure of stability to what has long been considered a dangerous Scandinavian backwater.

The initial battlefield victories, however, have since proven to be
only the beginning of the American struggle here. The subsequent
occupation created a number of difficult challenges critics claim
were overlooked by the White House's top Midwest war planners. The tipping point seems to have been a 2004 incident at the now notorious Okoboji.

First constructed as a boredom punishment camp for Midwest dissident youth, the US Military Command converted the sprawling Arnold's Park / Lake Okoboji area into an internment facility to house insurgent detainees. Almost immediately stories began to surface of prisoner mistreatment, including vivisections, anal probes by extraterrestrial strippers, and blackouts of Viking games.

American military spokesmen initially dismissed the stories, but
several news organizations – led by Newsweek – obtained a series of shocking photos of a Texas Army Reservist, Tyffanie Cruddup, laughing as she humiliates a naked inmate by putting a Dallas Cowboys stocking hat on his head.

The photos sent the Lutheran street into riots as far as Rheinlander,
Wisconsin, and sent shockwaves throughout the media world. The
incident received heavy play on network and cable news, the New York Times, Washington Post, Le Monde, the Guardian, Packers Illustrated, and was the subject of over a dozen off-Broadway dramas during the 2004 season. For its part, Newsweek ran a record eight consecutive covers on Okoboji, along with a special commemorative November 3 collector's issue with pull-out humiliation poster.

Luting and Looting

In the wake of the incident, American military spokespeople have
taken pains to defend handling of prisoners at Okoboji. A series of
new guidelines instruct guards to "respect the rituals and traditions
of our valued Lutheran prison guests," including "dietary needs,
Wednesday Nite Bingo, and twice daily viewing of Wheel of Fortune."

"It is important that we remember that Lutheranism is a religion of
peace," said Army spokesman Maj. Richard Lehrman. "And we need to remember to avoid insensitive behavior and remarks that will cause these peaceful Lutherans to go on another bloody killing rampage."

Despite officials' claims of intensified sensitivity, rumors have
persisted of continued prisoner abuse at Okoboji, including lutefisk
desecration – an especially heinous crime under Lutheran doctrine.
Some analysts have viewed the rumors skeptically, pointing to the Uff Da insurgent training manual "How To Lie About Lutefisk Desecration By Infidels." Still, dozens of news organizations continue to investigate the charges.

In its May 6 "Midwest Quagmire Wire" section, Newsweek appeared to have confirmed the lutefisk rumors. Bylined by Senior Correspondent Michael Isikoff, the magazine cited an unidentified source claiming that Okoboji guards had deliberately flushed an entire batch of the pungent cod-and-lye concoction that prisoners had been aging in a specially prepared commode. "The guard smelled it and thought it was prison burrito night," the source was quoted as saying.

News of the desecration spread quickly from Iowa to the Dakotas to Minnesota and Wisconsin, fanned by radio soybean reports and Lutheran clerics in fiery pancake breakfast sermons. Soon, enraged farm wives, clad in their traditional sweater vests and Disney jackets, had taken to the streets and begun a wild spree of destruction, overturning hundreds of rusty Blazers and Pontiac Grand Ams and hurling flaming Lladro porcelain figurines. Decorah was particularly hard-hit, as a frenzied throng of ululating Iowa women were seen looting needlepoint geese and rabbit tchotchkes from a Victorian craft shop. In a chilling moment caught on Army night vision cameras, their plus-size leader urges the mob to attack the near-by Pamida.

"Ya, you betcha!" came the chant of her enraged coreligionist.

After battling back the women with volleys of teargas and Land's End catalogs, a detachment of California reservists finally quelled the riot early Sunday morning, and attended to the injured.

Fake But Not Completely Implausible

As soldiers patrolled the streets of Decorah, Faribault and La Crosse Sunday, Newsweek Editor Mark Whitaker issued a surprising, terse clarification of the original story, saying that the magazine could "no longer vouch for every detail of the story, including the brand of lye used, the number of soldiers and prisoners present, or possibly whether any of it actually happened."

Whitaker, however, declined to retract the story, saying that the
magazine was "standing behind its essential plausibility."

"Obviously, if it causes thousands of native gals go on a berserk
looting rampage, there's got to be something believable in there
somewhere," said Whitaker. "Obviously, it's now up to the
Administration and the DoD to disprove these charges, once they
finish cleaning up the carnage."

In a later and terser clarification, Whitaker said that the
magazine's anonymous source could no longer remember whether he had ever been to Iowa, was in the military, or knew how to
pronounce `lutefisk.' In a still-later, and yet-terser clarification,
Whitaker finally retracted the story after revealing that its
anonymous source was Kippy, Michael Isikoff's imaginary childhood friend.

"This is a really unfortunate accident for everybody," said
Whitaker. "But let's not forget the real victims here – Newsweek,
Mike Isikoff, and especially Kippy."

While retracting the Okoboji accusations, Whitaker said Newsweek
stood by the original article's final two sentences, "Boo-yah! In
your FACE, Chimpy!"

Despite the Newsweek's humiliating public retraction of the
controversial lutefisk abuse charges, tensions remain high across the upper Midwest. Many here discount the retraction as being coerced by White House "crusaders," and believe that other abuses are being covered up at Okoboji.

"Oh yahh, I tell ya what, dere's a lotta bad stuff goin' on in dat
outfit over dere," said a young Decorah cleric who identified himself only as `Pastor Doug.' "I heard dem infidels are switchin' da prisoner's Leinies with Schlitz."

While Running the Lutefisk won’t externally scar you like retrieving coins or statuettes from a kettle of boiling water or carrying the red hot irons across a room will, the dread and foreboding it will presage the remainder of your Christmases with remains a not inconsiderable element in the crafting of a truly authentic Viking Stoicism.

How do you think they got so nonchalant about having it out with three foot long double edged knives, axes and spears? Losing a duel with axes is nothing to just ice down and laugh off over beers. Lutefisk may have been an actual Viking combat training agent; if you can learn to live on Lutefisk there’s probably nothing capable of truly scaring you ever again.

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