Danish Weddings (Part Six)


So far, so good!  We got hitched, started the party off with lots of kissing by all and sundry, enjoyed lashings of good food and wine, have heard a lot of speeches, joined in the sing-a-long and cut the toes off the groom's socks.

We're nearing the end...  Anyone for a piece of kransekage (Danish wedding cake)?

[caption id="attachment_1790" align="aligncenter" width="517" caption="Danish wedding cake - kransekage"]Danish wedding cake - kransekage[/caption]

Now, I may not be Danish by descent but I'm as mad about marcipan as the next Thor, Dennis or Henrik.  And kransekage is made out of marcipan, egg whites and icing sugar...  Baked in circles, towered high and adorned with Danish flags for weddings.  Sometimes it's baked in little logs or tiny circles (with their bottoms dipped in chocolate) and served at the end of a fancy meal.  We also eat it at midnight on Nytårsaften (New Year's Eve) when the bells ring in the New Year, washed down with a glass of champagne or two...

[caption id="attachment_1798" align="aligncenter" width="420" caption="Kransekage on New Year's Eve - complete with fireworks!"]Kransekage on New Year's Eve - complete with fireworks![/caption]

Yum-o!  So, with the last crumbs of the cake eaten and the guests enjoying a last boogie on the dancefloor, that just about wraps up our Danish wedding.  But wait!  Talking of wrapping - what about the bryllupsgaver - the wedding gifts?  Um, we're going to need a truck to take them home!

[caption id="attachment_1799" align="aligncenter" width="429" caption="Birthdays or weddings...bring your gift along on the day!"]Birthdays or weddings...bring your gift along on the day![/caption]

What, you mean those crazy Danes actually brought their gifts along to the wedding party?  Yep.  In Denmark there is no wedding shower, or show of presents for the mums, aunties and grannies before the wedding.  Guests bring their gifts with them - as they also do at birthday parties, christenings, confirmations, graduations, etc, etc.  And place them on the specially designated gavebord - gift table.  (I've even been to weddings in Jutland where staff were on hand to unpack the gifts for the couple, in order to save time!)  On a side note, the word gift in Danish means 'married'.  And it also means 'poison'.  Co-incidence?  I think not! ;)

Now, you may think bringing along the gifts is a quaint tradition.  But not practical.  Especially when me and 'Mr. Diane' - both of us working in Luxembourg at the time, and just months before relocating to Copenhagen - got hitched in my hometown of Edinburgh, Scotland.  Hubby's Danish family flew over to Scotland for the wedding, brandishing gifts.  Most of them fragile!  Which we then had to transport from Edinburgh to Luxembourg.  And then back to Denmark...

[caption id="attachment_1801" align="aligncenter" width="645" caption="From Denmark, to Scotland, to Luxembourg, and back to Denmark!"]From Denmark, to Scotland, to Luxembourg, and back to Denmark![/caption]

But, hey, it's the thought that counts, right?  Well, the wedding is over and I don't know about you, but after six posts on Danish weddings, I'm ready for a drink.  Join me next time when I'll be showing you how to make hyldeblomstchampagne - elderflower champagne!

Diane :)






Ash said…
Huh? People in other countries don't bring the giofts along, when they go to a celebration?
It's probably just because I'm danish, but that seems a little... impersonal to me. Do they just mail them to the person in advance? Or after? Or show up at peoples home with them at a random time? I would have been completely overwhelmed, if our 100 wedding guests had shown up at our house before the wedding to give us gifts.
And some of our gifts were homemade by family members, (monogrammed towels and bedding), so just picking them up or having them delivered from a shop at a later date was not an option. And what about all the cards and money gifts? How does that work, if people don't bring them along. A deposit in the bank is hadly a personal gift, is it :-/
I'm very courious as to how this works...
Diane said…
Hi Ash! In Scotland you'd have a 'show' of presents before the Big Day. All the aunties, grannies, friends, neighbours etc are invited in to 'ooh' and 'aah' over the gifts while munching sausage rolls and a glass of wine or two. And it's always been very popular to have a 'gift list' in a department store, which avoids the 'hey, we got three toasters, honey!' situations... Money/gift vouchers are normally sent to the couple directly with the wedding card/wedding invite acceptance. :)