Gudrun is a true rarity among the food carts of Portland. She has a name. Gudrun is a ’58 Streamline Silver Bullet trailer. And in the sun, her polished metal gleams like a Valkyrie’s shield. Gudrun is also the home of Viking Soul Food.
In 2010, Jeremy and Megan, proprietors of Viking Soul Food, decided that the traditional Norwegian potato lefse that they both enjoyed would be a good concept for a food cart. It was a fated dream. First, the day they purchased Gudrun, coincided with Norwegian Independence Day. Second, inside the trailer was a photo that was the final message Gudrun was meant to be. The photo was of Julia Child.
Viking Soul Food focuses on one particular aspect of Norwegian cuisine. Lefse, a potato flatbread. Lefse is the go-to comfort food for Norwegian-Americans. Jeremy and Megan realized they could stuff lefse with all manner of things Scandinavian and have the ultimate street food. Or as some refer to it, a Norwegian burrito.
Lefse, when used in this fashion, can be filled with almost any kind of ingredient. Jeremy and Megan have chosen to use the traditional foods of Norway and Scandinavia. Smoked salmon combined with a dill creme fraiche, pickled shallots, mixed lettuces and green cabbage wrapped in lefse is a very popular menu item.
Jeremy, also known as the Culinary Alchemist, has brought together their most popular menu item, Norwegian meatballs combined with a caramelized goat cheese gravy and sweet and sour cabbage wrapped in lefse. He has also created what must be one of the most unusual and yet delectable side dishes in Portland.
It’s a purple egg. Well, actually a pickled egg that’s purple. The egg is pickled overnight in the brine from the sweet and sour cabbage used with the meatballs. When the egg emerges from the brine, it’s purple. The egg is then dressed with a black pepper and lemon juice mayonnaise and wild salmon caviar.
Viking Soul Food may be the only place in Portland where you can get a real troll snack. Not an internet troll but a Norwegian troll who lives under a bridge. A crispy rye cracker is slathered with a combination of Jarlsberg cheese, roasted garlic and roasted shallots. The spread is then topped with more shallots. Trolls got it good.
Gudrun and Viking Soul Food can be found at the Bite On Belmont food cart pod located at 4255 SE Belmont St. The cart serves seven days a week. Sunday through Thursday hours are from 12–8 PM. Friday and Saturday the cart is open from 12–9 PM.