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SÆTT & SALT SÚKKULADI
The story of Sætt & Salt súkkulaði
“The idea came to me as early as 1984, while I was working in a bakery in Húsavík.” Elsa said, while her fingers kept on wrapping and boxing little chocolates, laying on her working table. Even while talking, each chocolate is wrapped with a care and elegance that can only come from endless practice. “But I really started in 2011, first in Ísafjörður, before I moved to Súðavík 2 years after”, she continues. “I was very passionate of bringing the icelandic herbs and fruits, together with chocolate. No one was doing that in those days. I believed it would be both interesting and daring to offer the taste of the icelandic land in the form of chocolates. That is why I started collecting herbs and berries by hand, close to where I live, to test out the creations that already were formed in my mind”
While Elsa told me about all the different combinations she tried out, she showed me around her workplace adjacent to her home, putting samples of her creations on the table. Her eyes twinkled when she talked about why and how certain chocolates came to be. “I never even contacted anyone to sell my chocolate, all people came to me, asking whether they could.” Elsa told me. I smiled when listening to her, thinking it must be a sign of the land, approving to be used in such a passionate and loving way.
“One time,” Elsa continued, “I got a phone call from the Blue Lagoon, asking for 2100 little white chocolates. I made them in 3 days, so now my fingers can never forget the movements anymore!” She laughed when showing me the tiny white truffles, inside an incredible creamy filling, with on top a swirling circular curl. But I sure could understand why the Blue Lagoon want so many, after tasting them. We finished our cup of coffee, while Elsa talked about the lands and the mountain behind her home.
I left this wonderful woman with my head full of a story, about a mountain and a woman with a seed of chocolate, cultivated deep inside her mind and heart.
By the roots of mountain Kofri
in Álftafjörður lies a small village.
Súðavík, a village of happiness
hopes and dreams
The herb and berries, used to make the chocolate tablets, are hand picked, close to Elsa’s home. Sea salt is imported from Saltverk in Reykjanes, just 115 kilometres to the East of Súðavík.
Not only the collecting, but all other steps in the process are done by her hands. Crafting the filling of the little chocolates, filling up the forms, decorating and wrapping the final product.
But the most important step in the whole creation, is Elsa’s imagination. Going there where no one has gone before. Bringing the art of chocolate making together with the gifts and beauty of the Icelandic land.
Each of her main chocolate bars are wrapped with a colour, representing an aspect of the taste pallet.
Blue for the sea, wrapped around a chocolate bar, only slightly salted with ecologically harvested sea salt.
Purple for the blue berries (bláber), which can be picked in Iceland from August to mid-September.
Green for the pumpkinseeds, giving a nutty flavour to combine with the sweet of the chocolate and the salt of the sea.
Orange for cinnamon, a autumn combination.
Red for goij berries and at last, yellow for happiness. This special chocolate will be crafted for Aldrei For Eg Sudur, a rock festival at Ísafjörður during Easter.
Next to the chocolate bars, Elsa also makes a variety of little chocolates and truffles. Alike the bars, there are filled with a combination of sweet, salt and a unique combination of fruit, seeds, nuts and herbs. Wild thyme, spicy peppers, bláber, cinnamon, caramel, baileys and goij berries to name a few. Needless to say, that the taste of each and every of her creations is on point. Sweet and yet salty. The saltiness in each chocolate, bringing out the flavours even more.
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