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Inspiration & Tips/Tips/How to fika like a Swede
Swedish fika - here you see a glass teapot on a tea towel from Swedish Grace with a selection of mugs and plates and cinnamon buns.

How to fika like a Swede

Anyone who has spent more than a fleeting moment in Sweden will surely have been introduced to the most Swedish of Swedish moments – the infamous fika. But for those who have some how missed this Swedish gem, what is it? And how does one fika like a Swede?
Tuesday, February 14, 2023
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FIKA - A SWEDISH INSTITUTION

So, first things first what is a Swedish fika [fee-ka] and why is it so important to our Scandinavian neighbours to the north? In basic terms fika is a coffee break but culturally it is so much more than that. To enjoy a fika means to slow down for a moment and appreciate the good things in life.

Fika is a social affair, enjoyed with friends, strong coffee and a sweet treat and it can come in many forms. Much like a regular coffee break fika is the perfect excuse to pause a long or difficult task. It can be taken mid-morning, mid-afternoon and all the hours in between. It can last for 10 minutes or continue for hours. It can be spontaneous afternoon date with friends or a meeting between business partners. However you plan to fika you get the picture – fika can be anything you want it to be.

WHAT’S FOR FIKA?

Traditionally the Swedish fika is all about a steaming hot cup of coffee and a cinnamon bun but of course the coffee can be swapped for tea or even lemonade and the cinnamon bun for any other sweet or even savoury snack.

The focus of the fika is about taking a break, getting to know a new colleague, or exchanging ideas so make of it what you like.

Enjoy a Swedish fika with cinnamon buns and a hot cup of coffee.
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$34

WHERE TO ENJOY A REALLY SWEDISH FIKA

As we mentioned before Swedish fika can be enjoyed anywhere any time but Swede’s love to enjoy the great outdoors and fika outside is a well loved pastime.

After a long cold winter at the first sign of spring you will find Swede’s wrapped in blankets enjoying fika on their balcony, in the forest, on the beach, always with their face turned to the sun soaking up some vitamin d!

FIKA TRIVIA TO SHARE ON YOUR NEXT COFFEE BREAK!

  • In the past, the word fika was used as a verb to hurry or hurry away - today it stands for anything but that.
  • Did you know that coffee was initially only sold in pharmacies in Sweden because it was considered to have health-promoting effects?
  • In 1728, there were just fifteen coffee houses in Stockholm - today the coffee shop options are almost endless with coffee shops for all tastes.
  • According to Arla’s patisserie report from 2018 Swedes prefer semla (a sweet bun, filled with cream and almond paste, traditionally served at Easter) with their fika to other buns.

Photography: @emelia.sundberg, @kohlundkimchi, Angeliqa Daldorph

Rebecca Sparling
Author

EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO ENJOY A SWEDISH FIKA

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