By Cat Wurdack
2508 SE Clinton St.
Daily 9 am-3 pm
The Norwegian Olympic curling team is wearing crazy pants and Danish film director Lars von Trier has a provocative new film at Sundance. It’s a great time to celebrate all things Scandinavian and enjoy some of the best pan-Scan dishes Portland has to offer at broder, a distinctive European style breakfast and brunch spot on SE Clinton St.
Owner Peter J. Bro is a proud half Swedish-American native of Milwaukee, Wis. who moved to Portland in 1999. He opened broder in 2007 and weekends have not been the same since on that short block below the Clinton Street Theater. Judging from the line up (which can start as early as 8:45 am even on a Monday), Portlanders cannot get enough pytt i panna, lefse, and æbelskiver.
What’s not to like? For $12 or less, enjoy a tasty, satisfying European style breakfast with fresh and local northwest ingredients: salmon, trout, root vegetables, farm eggs, Stumptown espresso, and more.
Pytt i panna is Swedish hash with a base of potatoes cooked with peppers and onions, topped with two baked eggs and served with house-pickled beets and walnut toast. broder offers it three ways: with smoked trout; a traditional style with country ham and roast beef; and vegetarian, with sweet potatoes and roasted Granny Smith apples.
Lefse is a Norwegian potato crepe (similar to a tortilla or flat bread) stuffed with meat and vegetables and farmer’s cheese. The lefse special changes daily.
Aebelskiver – sometimes known as the “Danish donut” because of its light and airy texture – are traditional, fluffy Danish pancakes the size and shape of a golf ball that you cut open and spread with lemon curd, lingonberry jam, and maple syrup that is served on the side.
For a meal that seems less breakfast, more lunch, choose a lamb burger with mint and cumin served on a brioche bun with herbed chevre; or Swedish meatballs – six chunky beef and pork meatballs in sherry cream sauce served with lingonberry jam, pickled beets and walnut toast.
All entrees come with pickled vegetables and a choice of two sides including sauteed greens, potato pancake, daily soup, and a fruit fritter served with sour cream and maple syrup. The sides can be ordered individually for $4.
You’ll also find breakfast bord – a variety plate of bread, meat, fish and hard cheese with citrus and yogurt served on a birchwood slab, and baked egg scrambles served on a square, cast iron platter with a cozy on the handle so you don’t burn your fingers.
Come early if you can. Broder is a little neighborhood spot with a large and well-deserved reputation. There’s a holding area right next door at Savoy (broder’s bigger, older cousin) where you can have coffee and pastries if there’s a wait.