My heart is racing a little bit faster after just discovering Hygge Bakery, a Danish bakery in downtown Los Angeles. Several years ago, I studied abroad in Denmark and immediately fell in serious love with their bakeries. And to make my separation from the country even more difficult, I lived with a Danish family whose matriarch was a baker. To this day, I still keep in touch with her, and frequently have daydreams about the creations that came from her oven. It was a pretty blissful existence: even with the chilly weather, how could one ever complain knowing that at the end of the train commute from Copenhagen (school) to Roskilde (home), freshly baked homemade cinnamon rolls awaited you at the kitchen table?
Now a resident of Los Angeles, I've tried to keep the Danish culture in my life by going to Scandinavian events, including the Annual Scandinavian film festival that happens in Beverly Hills each year. But my heart always aches a little bit, to be back in Denmark, and to get another taste of the culture I fell in love with.
I won't get a chance to get to downtown to try Hygge until after the Thanksgiving holiday. But the idea of a bakery named Hygge already resonates with this bakery hunter: Hygge, Danes will tell you, is something we can't necessarily translate into American terminology, but a concept that is a huge part of Danish culture. Some web writers out there have taken a stab at the definition, so if you're curious to read about Hygge, check out this link at The Hygge House website, some musings over at The Danish Web, or if you'd like the Hygge 101 version, this travel article encourages you to "Hygge it out in Denmark." Better yet, just go to Denmark and enjoy the breathtaking baked goods and hygge for yourself.