Scandinavian Rowanberry

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Scandinavian Rowanberry

Currant-sized, tart and dry rowanberries are very popular with birds. They are inedible, and slightly toxic when raw, but no one in their right mind would eat them raw. Learn more about Scandinavian rowanberry.

The taste of rowanberry is pleasingly bitter, and extremely aromatic when cooked. The rowan, or mountain ash (Sorbus aucuparia), is a small deciduous tree that bears the vividly orange berries in August. A fast-growing pioneer species that invades disturbed ground, the rowan will grow almost anywhere. The berries from other Sorbus species are also edible.

Scandinavian Rowanberry
The taste of rowanberry is pleasingly bitter, and extremely aromatic when cooked. Photo: Det matematisk-naturfaglige fakultet.

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Related: Scandinavians and Strawberries
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Culinary uses

The tannic, bitter taste of the berries can be extracted into cordials, and a delicious jelly. The berries are rich in pectin, so the jelly naturally sets well. It is beautiful with game and roast beef, with apples or simply on toast.

Scandinavian Rowanberry
The tannic, bitter taste of the berries can be extracted into cordials, and a delicious jelly.

The berries are an important ingredient in the famous digestif Gammel Dansk, which owes much of its taste and bitterness to rowanberries. The berries are a much-used ingredient in flavored schnapps.

Scandinavian Rowanberry
The berries are an important ingredient in the famous digestif Gammel Dansk

The berry itself is not used as a fruit, because the dryness and seeds are not too interesting, though some species were formerly dried and used as we use raisins.

Jelly is made in the same way as the crab apple jelly.

Scandinavian Rowanberry, written by Tor Kjolberg

Feature image on top: Photo – Wikipedia.

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Journalist, PR and marketing consultant Tor Kjolberg has several degrees in marketing management. He started out as a marketing manager in Scandinavian companies and his last engagement before going solo was as director in one of Norway’s largest corporations. Tor realized early on that writing engaging stories was more efficient and far cheaper than paying for ads. He wrote hundreds of articles on products and services offered by the companies he worked for. Thus, he was attuned to the fact that storytelling was his passion.

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