Icelandic flatbread, horseradish cream & roe

Icelandic flatbread, horseradish cream & roe

Nordic Light
30 mins
Cooking time
20 mins
Simon Bajada

This unique bread dates back to Icelandic settlement in 874 AD. Back then, before Icelandic households had stovetops, this bread was cooked on the embers of sheep dung! Why? Iceland has always lacked trees, so wood fires were rare – it’s this absence of trees that contributes to the beautifully stark, dynamic landscape found there.

These flatbreads (or flatkökur) will keep in a sealed plastic container in the pantry or refrigerator for a couple of days and toast really well the day after making.


Quantity Ingredient
200g coarse rye flour
100g wholemeal flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
250-300ml boiling water

Horseradish cream

Quantity Ingredient
190g cashew nuts, soaked in water for 4 hours and drained
1 lemon, juiced, plus extra if needed
1 tablespoon apple-cider vinegar
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast flakes
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly grated horseradish (or from a jar), plus extra if needed
small pinch white pepper
1/4 teaspoon sea salt

To serve

Quantity Ingredient
horseradish cream, (see above)
1/4 fennel bulb, thinly sliced into cold water
2 tablespoons salmon roe


  1. To make the horseradish cream, place the drained cashew nuts in a food processor together with the remaining ingredients and 125 ml of water. Blend everything together until well combined, about 2 minutes. If it’s too thick you can add a little more water. Season to taste and add more lemon juice or horseradish if desired. Set aside.
  2. To make the flatbread, add the rye flour, wholemeal flour, baking powder and salt to a large bowl and mix together well. Gradually stir in the boiling water and bring together to form a dough
  3. Tip the dough onto a floured work surface and knead for 4 minutes, until smooth and elastic. Divide the dough into eight even-sized pieces and roll each one into a ball. Roll out the balls to a 2 mm thickness. Use a plate approximately 15 cm in diameter to cut the rolled dough into round discs. Prick both sides of each disc all over with a fork.
  4. Heat a large cast-iron frying pan or flat hotplate over a high heat and cook the breads one at a time for about 2–3 minutes on each side, or until covered with black charred spots.
  5. Using your fingers or a pair of tongs, dip the cooked breads quickly into a bowl of lukewarm water. Hold each bread under for a few seconds, then stack the cooked breads underneath a clean, damp tea towel to allow them to steam and prevent them from drying out.
  6. Serve the flatbreads topped with dollops of horseradish cream, drained fennel slices and salmon roe.
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