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  5. "Han har senap på köttbullarn…

"Han har senap köttbullarna."

Translation:He has mustard on the meatballs.

December 10, 2014



Great sentence. Sounds like an antiquated disease.


I know, it sounds disgusting.


This sentence really makes me want to know how to say “If you know what I mean…” right after it :-°


"Om du förstår vad jag menar" (or you could say "om du vet vad jag menar"). :-)


You did a typo on yummy, I think


Kind of depends on what you mean by mustard and meatballs.

Dijon (or more commonly in my case gravlaxsås) on real köttbullar? Absolutely delicious.

English mustard on American-style Italian meatballs? Not so much unless you just like the taste of the mustard.


gravlaxsås with köttbullar? Is that legal?


Don't know if it's legal, but it is very good.

In my case this habit has developed out of the fact that whenever making köttbullar (or pyttipanna for that matter), I almost always make gravlax too (it's the one Swedish food that everyone in my house can agree on), and I always end up with both left over köttbullar and left over gravlaxsås, but almost never any left over gravlax, so I often put gravlaxsås on the sandwiches I make with the left over köttbullar in place of Dijon mustard.


If köttbullarna is meatballs, what would meatbuns be, a la baozi or nikuman?


Good question. I think we like to refer to such a meat-filled bread as dumpling (en) or possibly pirog (en).


Errrr what kind of meatballs?


The kind served in the restaurant of a more or less ubiquitous Swedish furniture store around the world.


What about "he has mustard with the meatballs"?


I agree, it sounds better to me!


But it does not have the same meaning.


Maybe not, but quite similar. ¿Could we say "Han har senap med köttbullarna"?


It's not ungrammatical, but it does sound a bit weird. I'd go with Han har/äter senap till köttbullarna for that.


Ok, tack så mycket!


Sure, it's quite similar. And in practice, you might of course say "with the meatballs" even if the precise location of the mustard would be on the meatballs.

But in a course that teaches a language through translation, it's important to be aware of the exact meaning of the sentence. "på köttbullarna" unequivocally means "on the meatballs".


i ate this when i was in Sweden, i love duolingo!


Could anyone tell me the different words in Swedish for 'bun/buns' and 'ball/balls' (as in meat balls)


That depends on what kind of bun you mean, but they're both often called bulle. I wrote a little about why here: https://forum.duolingo.com/comment/23059887


Is senap related to the German Senf? Or this just an easy way to remember this word?


They're related. The original sound was a p one, but it morphed into an f in High German.


How would one say, "He puts mustard on his meatballs," in Swedish? (As in, "Usually, when he eats meatballs, he eats them with mustard.")

(Sorry if this was already answered; for some reason the comments are out of order and I can't figure out which replies go with which comments.)


I'd go with e.g. Han brukar ha senap på köttbullarna.


I get really upset when I get mistakes because I use wrong English preposition. Like now "in the meatballs" ... Sorry, but I'm not here to learn English :(


Sorry, we can't help you. If we add 'in the meatballs' as an accepted answer, that'll be shown to other users as 'another correct answer' – which it obviously isn't, because that would be i köttbullarna in Swedish. You'll have to live with learning some English too, I'm afraid.


and isn't it a great thing that you are learning another language for free? ^suggested answer: yes


i think an article is needed here. He has a mustard on the meatballs. he has mustard, sounds not right.


Native English speaker here. I would not say a mustard, since you can't really count mustard (I would never say mustards).


Setting that aside, wouldn't it be more normal to say "he uses mustard" instead of "he has"?


Either one sounds fine to me, really. He uses mustard sounds like a general statement, implying that he just likes to put mustard on meatballs, but He has mustard sounds like he's currently eating them with mustard on them.


I would most likely say this as "he puts mustard on his meatballs"


I'd more naturally express it some other way (with basically a different sentence). Such is language ;)

Indeed! If you can come up with a way of expressing this naturally in English, I think a lot of confused people in this thread would be interested... But of course, it is unlikely that one single translation would map perfectly onto all the different possible usages and nuances of an expression.

I guess "Han har senap på slipsen" would be an easier sentence to translate. :-)


I'm starting to develop an unhealthy obsession with mustard and meatballs, but it struck me that there's a fine line between "Han har senap på köttbullarna" and "Han har senap på sina köttbullar". In many cases, you might use either, but in some, they carry a slightly different nuance.

The former is the more neutral sentence -- there's mustard on the meatballs. The latter can carry a hint of a contrast: It could be that there are different foodstuffs on the plate, and you want to stress that the mustard is specifically on the meatballs. Or it could be that several people are eating meatballs, and only this guy has mustard on his ones. Or it could be used just as the former sentence.

Both sentences can mean various things depending on what part of the sentence one stresses.

I guess the main lesson to be learned from this sentence is that one doesn't need to define whose meatballs they are in Swedish as often as one does in English.


Oh, and I'm from the western US btw, for clarification. Haha, and "Han har senap på slipsen" would be a lot easier ;)


@tredjedotter: The given sentence means that the mustard is already on the meatballs.

"He has mustard for the meatballs" would be "Han har senap för köttbullarna". "Det finns senap för köttbullarna" sounds more natural, though (just as it does in English).


If I went with "He has mustard on his meatballs", it also makes sense, but to me it implies a little less agency, like maybe they just come with mustard as per the menu, and he may or may not like that fact. I think the biggest trip-up for me and the other English speakers is actually "the meatballs", instead of "his meatballs". Saying "he has mustard on the meatballs" just sounds like an L2 error to me :/ Somehow the sentence needs to show that the meatballs belong to the subject.


Yeah, it's really hard to find exact equivalents in meaning between languages, even when you use the same words. Thinking about this sentence more, I suppose I'd say something like "He got mustard on his meatballs", where "got" implies "ordered" or "requested". Like "What did John get??" - "Oh, he got mustard on his meatballs. I got bbq sauce on mine." The context I'm imagining is having dinner out with friends and someone comments on the friend who got meatballs w/ mustard. But in isolation this is ambiguous, because "got" could also imply an accident, like someone next to him splashed mustard on his plate when they were dispensing it. Hahaha, this is really tough.


why not ''he has mustard for the meatballs", as if someone was serving a plate and lettting the eater know that mustard was available?


Putting is not having.


True, but "he has" sounds a bit unnatural to me. The only context I can think of is if there were two orders of meatballs, one with mustard, and people were trying to explain which order belongs to which person. I would use "he puts" to describe a specific person's taste, like he likes mustard on his meatballs. What context comes to mind for "Han har senep på köttbullarna"? Now that I think about it, the part that feels the most unnatural in the English translation is "the meatballs" instead of "his meatballs"


I would find more natural to just say "The meatballs have mustard on them"., but that's just me. And, of course, would change the sentence/translation entirely.


It feels completely natural to a Swedish speaker.

He has meatballs, mashed potato and hopefully some vegetables on his plate. He has mustard on the meatballs. He could also not have any mustard at all, or he might have the mustard on the plate, but not touching the meatballs (you know how some people are very strict about things like that).

You wouldn't use "han har" for a general statement of liking mustard with his meatballs, that would be "han gillar" or "han tycker om" or, depending on the context, even "han vill ha" or "han äter".


Ok, now I understand the meaning of the Swedish sentence better. I just wouldn't use the direct English translation with "have", I'd more naturally express it some other way (with basically a different sentence). Such is language ;)


You'd only say "a mustard" if you were talking about a specific mustard. He has a (different) mustard for each kind of meat. There is a Swedish mustard for meatballs, a spicy mustard for sausage...


I also think this sentence sounds awkward. I would definitely say "He put mustard on the meatballs."


Me too, so is this also valid in Swedish? "Han lägger senap på köttbullar"? Tack


No, for three reasons.

1: lägger senap sounds really weird, lägger requires that we feel something is 'lying down' after the action, and that feels absurd about mustard.
2. på köttbullar is indefinite, 'on meatballs' – maybe if he does this habitually somehow? perhaps he works as a cook? anyway, not in this sentence.
3. There is no sense of direction in the Swedish sentence Han har senap på köttbullarna. It does not mean that he puts mustard on them, it means that he/someone else has already done so.


Hej Arnauti, kan du explain reason number tre igen ? haha


There's a very good post about this phenomenon here: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/6330349


Dear Arnauti i know that we usually don't use other kinds of... senap... but is mustard really a kind of powder or just a sauce


Definitely the sauce-like condiment in this case.


I would only say "a mustard" to refer to an individual mustard plant. The condiment is a mass noun.


Or you're stocking up on different types of mustard: "I got a Dijon, a stone-ground, and a Chinese mustard."


"He puts mustard on the meatballs" is the most natural in my opinion, though one could argue that the meaning differs slightly


You don't know if he was the one who put the mustard there. I think the difference in meaning is not just a slight one.

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