This smörgåsbord comes from Morgan McGlynn's book The Modern Cheeseboard (£16.99, White Lion Publishing). Also check out our cheese grazing board and Christmas cheeseboard for a spread of meats, cheeses and fruits.

Morgan says: "The Scandinavian smörgåsbord is a mixture of hot and cold dishes, and the scale borders almost on a buffet. Serve it alongside traditional schnapps or aquavit – but if you prefer a lower ABV, a sancerre will stand up nicely to the range of flavours mingling happily on this board. A smörgåsbord would not be complete without traditional cheese varieties, such as brown Norwegian gjetost and jarlsberg."

To make the gin-pickled cucumbers, cut 1 medium cucumber into rounds, then put in a sieve set over a bowl and sprinkle with ½ tsp of salt. Leave to drain for 1 hr, then rinse under cold running water to remove the salt. Transfer to a heatproof bowl. Put 70ml of white wine vinegar, 40ml of gin, 2 tbsp of caster sugar and ½ tbsp of mustard seeds in a pan with 125ml of water, and warm over a medium heat until the sugar has dissolved. Pour the mixture over the cucumbers and chill for at least 2 hrs before serving.

Wow your friends and family with this smörgåsbord, then check out the Christmas cheeseboard, baked feta board and more Christmas Eve recipes.



  • 300g jarlsberg
  • 150g goat’s milk gouda
  • 100g gjetost


  • 10g salmon caviar or roe (optional)
  • 50g sliced smoked salmon
  • 2 pieces of cooked salmon fillet


  • 750g cooked new potatoes
  • 3 hard-boiled eggs, peeled and halved
  • 6 hard-boiled quail’s eggs, peeled and halved
  • 130g pickled red cabbage
  • 7 radishes, sliced
  • 1 chicory, leaves separated
  • gin-pickled cucumbers (see recipe above)
  • 20g cornichons
  • 1 lemon, sliced
  • 30g rocket
  • dill sprigs and capers, to garnish


  • 1 spring onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 tbsp chopped dill
  • 200g cottage cheese
  • squeeze of lemon juice


  • 200g seeded crackers
  • 4 slices rye bread


  • STEP 1

    To make the cottage cheese dip, mix the spring onion and dill with the cottage cheese and lemon juice, and season. Put the cottage cheese dip, pickled cabbage and salmon caviar or roe (if using) into separate bowls or ramekins. Slice the jarlsberg in half so that you have two wedges, then cut the gouda into triangles. Using a cheese plane, cut the gjetost into neat triangles. Lightly crush half of the cooked potatoes.

  • STEP 2

    To assemble, grab the largest chopping board or platter you have and get creative. Using the full rainbow of colours and layering up the variety of flavours, build the platter, starting by putting the bowls or ramekins across the board, leaving plenty of room in between each one. Put the jarlsberg halves on the right of the board (arranging the board with it placed horizontally in front of you) and the gouda and gjetost triangles in separate piles or overlapping layers near the centre. Put the pickles, radishes, crispbread, rye bread and chicory around the edge of the board, and finish by adding the fish (flaking the cooked salmon), rocket, potatoes, lemon slices and halved eggs. Finally, fill the gaps with dill sprigs and sprinkle over some capers.

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