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Þykkvibær

Þykkvibær is the oldest rural village in Iceland and it has great food and cultural history. The village Þykkvabær was established because from there the ocean could easily be reached from the mouth of the river Rangá and the good benefits of the area made it popular for people to live there. The residents of Þykkvabær were known for eating horse meat, which was considered scandalous and unchristian, but the neighboring farmers brought their animals to slaughter in Þykkvabær and the locals go to keep the meat. There was often so much meat left that there was not enough salt to store it so there was a foul smell in the cottages, but people ate the meat if they could.

It was always difficult to go to sea from Þykkvabær, but the last time it was attempted it was by a rowboat in 1955. The residents of Þykkvabær used Lyme grass and made thick porridge from it which they called dough (i. deig). It substituted bread, was plated and buttered. It was considered delicious, filling, and healthy.

Þykkvibær is now best known for its potato cultivation. It started in 1934 and later took over other farming. Farmers created homemade tools for planting. A barrel was taken, and wooden poles placed with regular intervals on it, and then it was rolled around the field like a wheelbarrow. Potato cultivation is the main cultural heritage of the people of Þykkvabær. The sandy soil and flat land are suitable for potato cultivation. Night frost is also less likely due to higher air temperatures along the coastline. Besides, it is conveniently close to the capital area and thereby the main market. Þykkvabær potato factory was established in 1981 and was a way to utilize potatoes that would otherwise have been discarded due to overproduction. Distribution and sales take place in Garðabær municipality in the Capital Region, but the factory still operates in Þykkvabær and is now owned by the food manufacturer Sómi ehf. In Þykkvabær, crackling is produced from dried horsemeat.

Álfur brewery is located in Kópavogur municipality in the Capital Region but it brews beer from Icelandic potato peelings and barley. About half of the raw material is peel from the potato factory in Þykkvabær.

Since 2005, the residence of Þykkvabær has held a potato ball called Kartöfluball, which came about after the traditional Icelandic winter celebration Þorrablót had to be canceled due to lack of participation.