Fastelavn is a Danish holiday normally celebrated on Sunday or Monday before Ash Wednesday. It is somewhat similar to the American Halloween where children dress in costumes and go from house to house calling for candy or they will play tricks (though tricks are normally played no matter what, such as toothpaste or shaving cream on door handles or toilet paper on cars).
Some towns may have a parade followed by the traditional ‘slå katten af tynden’ which is a wooden barrel that has cats painted on it and is filled with candy. The children takes turn hitting the barrel with a bat and the one to hit the bottom out, spilling the candy, is crowned ‘kattedronning’ (Queen of the cats). Hitting of the barrel continues and the one hitting down the last plank is crowned ‘kattekonge’ (King of the cats).
If the children go door to door begging for candy they will come to the door and sing a little tune called ‘Boller op, boller ned’
This song, if translated directly, says:
Buns up, buns down,
buns in my stomach,
if I don’t, get no buns,
then I will make trouble.
The buns mentioned in the song is referring to the ‘Fastelavnsboller’ which is a popular pastry served on this particular day.
They are simple to make, and super tasty… Give it a go… 🙂
2.5 dl Milk
25g fresh yeast (about one tbsp. dried yeast)
0.5 tsp salt
500g white flour
3 dl milk
2 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp vanilla powder
2 tbsp cornstarch