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163 posts categorized "Food and Drink"

June 19, 2014

"Jordgubbstårta" Midsummer Layer Cake - the recipe

Cake

Ahhhh.... This is such a nice cake. It tastes of summer. Pure summer. We re-tested the recipe last night and the result lasted only for as long as it took us to eat it. With second helpings. 

For us, no Midsummer is complete without strawberrry layercakes, also known as "Jordgubbsstårta".

If you want to cheat and make it easy for yourself, cheat's notes are at the bottom of the post. We do feel that it is worth the effort, though, to make everything from scratch.

For the Strawberry layers

700g strawberries, washed, trimmed and sliced

75g raspberry jam

For the vanilla patisserie cream

NOTE: Needs to be cooled before using in the cake or the cream will split.

1 vanilla pod

500ml whole milk

6 egg yolks

140g caster sugar

45g corn flour

Split the vanilla pod and scrape out the seeds and add to a saucepan with the milk. Bring to the boil. Take care not to burn and turn off heat as soon as boiling point is reached.

Whisk egg yolk and sugar until it goes almost white, then turn off the whisk and add the corn flour.  Turn the whisk back on medium and slowly add the hot milk to the bowl, whisking continuously.

Pour the mixture back into the saucepan and bring back to the boil and cook for 1 minute to thicken. Turn off, sieve the mixture into a bowl, cling film and cool down completely in the fridge before using.

For the cake layers

5 eggs

150g caster sugar

130g plain flour

1 tsp. vanilla sugar

How to:

Heat the oven to 200 degrees Celcius.

Trace 3 identical circles onto baking paper – approximately 20-22 cm diameter.  Place baking paper onto flat baking trays.

Whisk egg and sugar until white and fluffy. The key here, is to whisk for a long time to incorporate as much air as possible as there are not raising agents in the mixture.

Sift flour and vanilla sugar into the egg mixture and fold, very carefully, until completely incorporated. Preserve as much air as possible, so fold carefully but thoroughly.

Carefully divide the batter between the three circles and ensure batter fills the circles all the way around, neatly.

Bake in the oven until just golden brown and done – this will depend on your oven, but 5-6 minutes is usually fine.

Remove from and leave to cool completely on a cooling rack.  Very carefully remove the baking paper – if it sticks, wet the back of the paper a little bit and it should come off with more ease.

For the Whipped Cream

700ml whipping cream

2 tbs icing sugar

1 tsp vanilla sugar

On high speed, whisk all ingredients until stiff peaks form. The cream needs to be quite firm to hold when decorating the cake - but take care not to over whip.

Divide the cream into two equal portions.  Fold one half of the whipped cream together with the cold vanilla patisserie cream until completely incorporated (The other half is used to decorate the final cake).

Place the first layer cake on the plate you wish to serve on. Spread a nice layer of raspberry jam, follow by a 1cm thick layer of the patisserie cream / whipped cream mixture. Add a good handful of sliced strawberries evenly spread out. Add another cake layer and repeat over again and then add the final cake layer on top (You may have a bit of excess custard cream left).

Using a palette knife, spread a thin layer of the whipped cream on the top of the cake. Using a piping bag with a star nozzle, add the rest of the whipped cream and pipe carefully around the edge of the cake in an up-and-down motion until the sides are completely covered. If you do not have a piping bag, you can use the palette knife for this and just make smooth edges.  If you prefer less cream and a more rustic look you can omit the cream around the edges all together.

Finish by adding the remaining strawberries on the top of the cake. It doesn’t have to look too arranged – just scatter them so the cake is evenly covered.

This cake greatly improves after a few hours in the fridge so all the flavours are soaked into the cake layers.

Cheat Notes:

Cake layers – in speciality shop, you can buy sponge layers already baked. (Scandi Kitchen sells ‘Lagkage bunde’ – already come split into three layers). 

Crème patisserie: We stock a product called 'Kagecreme' from Maizana which is sachet of instant creme patisserie. Mix one sachet with 500ml cold milk, wait ten minutes and it is ready to use.

Substituting with custard will not give you the exact same result, but you CAN do it at a push – but don’t use half and half, use ¼ custard to ¾ whipped cream volume. Omit the sugar in the whipped cream as custard is really sweet.

 

June 12, 2014

How to celebrate midsummer the Swedish way

Sommar

Wherever you are in the world at midsummer time, you will be able to find gatherings of lost-looking Swedes to celebrate with. Follow our lead and you’ll be able to infiltrate the groups inconspicuously.

Choose the day

Midsummer is the longest day of the year and falls around 23rd June. Swedes always move it to the closest Friday afternoon and evening, which is 20th June this year. In Sweden, celebrations are on the Friday evening. Here in London, we can't persuade our bosses to let us drink aquavit on a Friday afternoon, so things get going on Saturday. Check to see what's happening in your local area.

If you are in London, maybe just happen to be passing by Hyde Park. Nothing official, you know, but we gather there is a chance a few Swedes will be meeting up and dancing and singing for a bit. Around midday. Near Speaker's Corner. They have been doing that for years and years, so there's a good chance they'll be doing it again. 

Blogger-image-505322674

Get outside

It's midsummer, and you're celebrating nature. Go to the park, a lake, or a field.

Don't forget your umbrella.

Lena+granefelt-midsummer+celebration-10471

Wear a garland in your hair

Essential attire for women. You can make a floral garland from wire and flowers and staple it onto your ears - learn how to HERE. Alternatively, H&M do a nice range, being Swedish. Men can wear the garland too, and most do after a few drinks.

Clothing

White and floral is the style for women - but not so much that you appear to be going to a meeting of Chintz Anonymous. Paired with the garland, it will make you look amazing and a bit pagan. Wear your hair down like Freya. Or Loreen.

Gentlemen, it's all about pastels. Tight trousers (white, yellow), pointy shoes, a pink shirt and Ray Bans. You want to make it seem like all this is a bit beneath you. Sport a fashionable beard or moustache. Google 'Stureplan fashion' for an idea of how actual Swedish metrosexuals achieve this look. 

Food

You need to get yourself a Swedish Midsummer picnic (can be ordered here) or make your own – here’s an easy guide: CLICK HERE FOR MIDSUMMER RECIPES

Smorgas

Smörgastårta

Means Sandwich Cake. It’s a thing. A cake that is not a cake but a massive sandwich. If you make a Sandwich Cake every Swede in the vicinity will love you forever. Seriously.

Nubbe

A nubbe (the plural is 'nubbar') is a little shot of aquavit and it’s essential to get hold of these. Make sure you bring cold ones to the park. Recommended dose is two beers to one nubbe. Take care, it’s strong stuff - and if you can’t do it properly, Swedes will see through you. Keep your head in one piece until you can speak fluent Swedish (three nubbar or more) and nobody will notice you’re an imposter. 

Buy aquavit at our place - we stock many kinds, both online and in the shop in London 

Snapsvisor

Drinking songs you need to learn for when you drink your nubbar. Just learn this one (see below) and you’ll be fine.

If you are stuck, sing Euphoria.  

Maypole

Our maypole is used in June, which technically makes it a Junepole. Like here, it's also decorated with lovely flowers, as well as two circular garlands either side at the top. Just to reinforce the symbolism of what it means (think about it...). We raise the pole around lunch time. If you end up celebrating in Hyde Park in London, you may have to pretend there is a maypole because health and safety means no pole is officially allowed, so we dance around our handbags instead.

Little Frogs

Every Swede sings this song. Everyone. And does the actions, which involve jumping about like a frog.

Games

After the dancing and the cake and a bit more drinking, we get physical.  Games of kubb (a tactical, skittles-like game that has its roots in Viking times), tug of war, arm wrestling and naked mud slinging.

Okay, so we don’t do the last one. Except when we do.

 

Inge

What next?

Dancing. If you are cool and dressed like someone from Stockholm's Stureplan (and, frankly, still standing), you may want to head to a club for some dancing and more drinking. 

Here's a link to the hottest ticket in London town this year 

Here's a really great place to go if you just want to be with Swedes and friends and drink great cocktails More here

If you're up for something more traditional, dust off a CD player and pop on some dansband CDs (and ABBA, obv). Pay a visit to the ScandiKitchen toilets for dansband suggestions. You'll see what we mean.

Midsommarblomster-med-kudde

Seven flowers

If you don’t have a partner, pick seven different kinds of flowers and put them under your pillow and you will dream of the person you'll marry. If you’re not willing to put all your eggs in one basket, head to a bar and revel in the fact that this is the one time of year where Swedes are not at all reserved. The birth rate always spikes in Sweden about nine months after midsummer. 

Welcome-to-2013-these-are-the-25-most-hungover-cities-in-america

The next day

You will wake, having dreamt about the person you will marry. There may be images flashing before your eyes of people wearing yellow trousers. Flashes of blue and yellow flags and memories of having an arm-wrestle with a lamp post. Midsummer comes but once a year. Thank goodness. 

Glad Midsommar!

June 05, 2014

How to create a midsummer picnic - the easy way

Banner_set3_seasonalmidsummer

How to create a midsummer picnic - the easy way

Midsummer occurs at exactly the same time as the summer solstice. It’s a wonderful time of year where we have almost round-the-clock daylight and try to tap into as much of it as we can, preparing ourselves for the long dark winter days ahead.

In Sweden, 'midsommar' sort of means picnics. It also means midsummer maypoles, aquavit, dancing, fun and frolics, and maybe a sing-song or two. It means flowers in your hair, and it definitely means local food eating outdoors with friends and family.

If you want to try your hand at a typically Scandi midsummer picnic, here’s our easy guide to doing it yourself. And don't worry if you think you'll have problems getting some of the trickier ingredients - we've suggested alternatives throughout.

What to make and pack

The emphasis is on seasonality and authentic produce.

Herring

It’s just not Scandi unless there's herring, so don't be squeamish and give it a try. At midsummer, we enjoy Matjes herring in particular. A lot more delicate than the usual pickled herring, it goes very well with the season's new potatoes.

We usually have at least two types of herring, so try one with Swedish mustard dressing – ABBA’s Senaps Sill is great.

Some UK supermarkets do have Scandi brands of pickled herring, so go for those if you can as they have a sweeter brine. Matjes herring is available online from ScandiKitchen.co.uk and you can also get it at Ocado. Rollmop herring is easy to find, but it is rather sourer than what we have in Scandinavia, and we have it in chunks rather than rolled lengths - avoid unless there's nothing else.

New potatoes

A must-have. Get really good quality new potatoes, boil and cool down to bring along to the picnic. Some people like them very plain, some like them tossed in dill. We prefer them in a light dill dressing as follows:

Cook the potatoes as described above. You can use slightly warm potatoes for this, or cooled ones straight out of the fridge. The most important part is to dress them just before serving.

Prepare the dressing:

• 75ml sunflower oil or other light oil

• 25ml white wine vinegar

• 1 tbsp Dijon mustard

• 1 tbsp caster sugar

• 1 medium shallot, very finely chopped

• 1 bunch of dill, finely chopped

• Salt and pepper to taste

Whisk the liquids, mustard and sugar until the sugar has dissolved, then fold in the chopped shallot and dill. Pour the dressing over the potatoes and make sure each potato is coated.

Gräddfill 

Swedish sour cream. There's no direct British equivalent (due to the fat content), but if you mix half natural yoghurt to half crème fraîche, you'll get something very close. Make a small batch so you have enough to pour over the potatoes and Matjes herring as a dip or dressing. Add a handful of finely chopped chives to the mixture.  

We do sell Gräddfil at ScandiKitchen if you want to get hold of the real thing.

Beetroot salad

This makes an appearance at every festive season. It’s delicious and simple to make, but you can easily buy our own from ScandiKitchen or Ocado.

To make it yourself, drain a jar of Scandi pickled beetroot and lightly chop them. Mix with one chopped tart apple. Add enough crème fraîche and mayonnaise to create a light pink hue, then season with salt, pepper, a dash of balsamic and maybe a squeeze of lemon juice if needed. Leave to set. 

If you use British pickled beetroot, you may need to add sugar for a more authentically sweeter taste.

Meatballs

Of course. Did you think we could have a picnic with no meatballs? 

Make or buy. If you decide to make, do so a day in advance, as it takes quite a while to make a full batch. If you buy, we highly recommend either Per i Viken or Mamma Scans. Either way, eat them cold.

Salmon

We love salmon, but it can be a bit difficult to sit and eat on a picnic. We suggest making a cured salmon salad with new potatoes. You can omit the potatoes if you don’t want to double up on spuds for your picnic.

  • 300g cooked, cooled new potatoes, halved
  • 200g cured salmon (or smoked salmon, if you prefer)
  • 100g green beans, blanched, cut into 3-4 cm pieces
  • 150g green asparagus, blanched, cooled, cut into 3-4 cm pieces
  • 100g green peas, blanched, cooled
  • 10 cherry tomatoes, halved
  • A handful of crunchy green leaves (from iceberg to frisée – whatever you prefer)
  • 1/3 cucumber, cubed
  • 1 tbsp chopped chives 
  • Sprigs of dill to decorate

Fold together and dress lightly with gravlax sauce, which is a dill and mustard dressing. We stock it, as do some supermarkets. 

Green salad

Nobody will eat it, but it’s pretty and looks like you've make a massive effort. Optional, of course.

Cheeses

Go for a lump of lovely Swedish Västerbotten or Prast. Don’t forget the cheese slicer.

If you want to show off, make a Väststerbottenpaj. It's a cheese quiche made with Västerbotten and full-fat cream. The dressing for the quiche is easy: a small jar of red lumpfish roe mixed with 100ml of crème fraîche. Or just buy a cheese quiche and smile sweetly.

Bread

This bit is important. You have to have crispbread, of course. Go for Leksands or Pyramid, both are very nice. Crusty bread is also common - get a baguette or some seeded rolls, whatever you fancy. Just don't forget the butter. 

Sweet stuff

Midsummer is all about the humble strawberry, and you’ll need to incorporate strawberries into your picnic somehow. If you're having it in your garden, you could make a jordgubbstårta – a strawberry layer cake – but that would be hard to bring along to a picnic. Instead, we suggest a few punnets of strawberries with a bit of cream and you’re done. If you want to bake, make a delicious Swedish sticky chocolate cake called a kladdkaka the day before. Chill it and slice before you leave (it's slightly under-baked and sticky, so you can only cut it while cold).

Serve with the cream and strawberries. Here's the recipe for kladdkaka.

Booze

Aquavit, cider and beers. You can add wine or champagne, but be careful of mixing aquavit and wine. We recommend a bottle of Skåne aquavit or Hallands Fläder, both are nice and summery. Only ever drink very cold, and as shots. For beers, go for Tuborg or Pistonhead. Rekordelig or Kopperberg are good cider options and probably the easiest thing on your shopping list to obtain. 

If you can't get aquavit, try flavouring a bottle of vodka. Google "make your own Swedish aquavit" for ideas.

Singing

Once you crack open the aquavit, the desire to sing will become evident. Prepare some good old Swedish ‘snapsvisor’, aka drinking songs. If you don’t speak Swedish, just pretend to be the Swedish Chef from The Muppets for a few minutes. More aquavit helps with that. Please be aware that after two shots of the strong stuff, you are likely to be fluent in Swedish, just by default.

Midsummer maypole etiquette

If there is a maypole, you need to dance around it. Not on your own, but with other people. Let them take the lead if you are unsure (and you will be unsure, so let them take the lead). If you find yourself pretending to be a little frog, this is quite normal. More aquavit helps with that.

Dress code

Well, there's not a dress code as such (although UK midsummer celebrations probably should include an anorak and umbrella). Women tend to wear white clothing, with wild flowers in their hair. This is of course optional, especially when it comes to keeping tidy during a picnic, although the floral hair arrangements can get quite competitive. Men tend to wear stuff that makes them look even more Swedish. Like tight trousers, maybe even yellow ones. We don't really advise either, if we're honest.

And that's it. Just have a lovely day whatever you do. Glad Midsommar!

 

May 07, 2014

18 ways to be more Norwegian

We'll be celebrating Norwegian Constitution Day on 17th May along with the rest of Norway - so we thought we'd make a little selection of ways you can be more Norwegian:

 

1. When you 'gå på tur' (go for a hike) you always bring a Kvikk Lunsj and an orange. And you never,  EVER, allow anyone who isn't Norwegian to call your Kvikk Lunsj a 'Kit-Kat'.

Kvikklunsj 

 

2. Eat brunost. Enthuse about brunost. Wonder why no one else eats a brown cheese made from whey that looks like brown Plasticine but tastes of caramel and sheer happiness when sliced and put on top of warm waffles that you've made yourself in your heart-shaped waffle iron using batter you keep in your fridge for every occasion that requires waffles.

Vaffel_ost_wilfa

 

3. Eat a frozen pizza called the Grandiosa. Enthuse about a frozen pizza called the Grandiosa. The Grandiosa is the best pizza ever. Italy has nothing on the Grandiosa. Nothing.

F-Brødtekst-grandiosa

 

4. Sweden is good for one thing - the fleske-safari (meat safari). Meat is cheaper in Sweden, so it's worth crossing that border for meat. And booze. And everything else. Everything is cheaper in Sweden.

   Border

 

5. Sweden will never be better than Norway at anything. Apart from the price of everything. But of that you shall never speak openly.

  Swedes

(Denmark will never be better than Norway at anything. Apart from its easy availability of booze. Which you can talk about).  

 

6. Wear cool genser jumpers like this. Perfect for occasions such as being in temperatures of -20, Eurovision, fishing and crossing the border to acquire meat.

Jumper

 

7. Wear the 'bunad' national dress as if you were born in it. Yes, it itches, but that's part of the charm. You'll keep telling yourself. A lot.

Bunad

8. If you're well known for something, become a Norgesvenn - a famous friend of Norway. Norgesvenner in the past included the late Roald Dahl and Leroy from Fame. Today, Linda Evans from Dynasty, Bonnie Tyler and A1 have the honour.

Linda

 

9. In the summer, partake in a ‘Grillfest’. For this you should wear a ‘Grilldress’, which is a shellsuit in bright colours. Also required: curly hair and a fake moustache, plus socks and sandals. Harry Enfield's Scousers are your style icons.

  Grilldress

 

10. Celebrate Taco Friday at home. Every Friday. Unless you’re having Grandiosa, then it’s okay not to have Tacos. TACOS!

SecondColumn

 

11. Eat boiled sheep’s head, dried lamb sticks or cod preserved in lye. And fermented trout - that you should also get down with. 

  Smalahoved-kalrotstappe

 

12. Hyttetur. Every weekend, go to a cabin. Any cabin. If you don’t have a cabin near a fjord, go to your garden shed, even if you live in a bedsit in Hackney. Also, on the way, make sure to repeat point 1. (If you're in Hackney, we sell Kvikk Lunsj at ScandiKitchen.)  Use motivating sentences such as 'Ut på tur, aldri sur' (literally: 'out on a hike, never angry').

  Hytte

 

13. Every summer, go to Syden for two weeks vacation. This basically just means ‘The South’. Copenhagen counts. Or Oslo, if you're from Trondheim.

Syden

 

14. Use the term ‘Utepils’, meaning ‘to sit outside and have a beer, even if the sun just came out four minutes ago’. We do that here in the UK too, but we don't have the word for it.

Utepils

Utepils Photo Richard Sagen 

 

15. Flags. Celebrate your flag, every day of the year and especially on 17th May. On this day, purchase seven more flags to your collection. Wave them all around. 

7012961-norske-flag

 

16. Norwegians are born with skis on their feet. Uncomfortable for the mothers, but useful once they learn to stand up and navigate down snow covered mountains. If you can’t ski, don’t move to Norway.

  Snow baby skiing

 

17. Enjoy your hotdog wrapped in a potato pancake. It's a thing.

Hotdog

 

And finally: 17th May - 'Syttende Mai'. 

Celebrate Norway's national day on 17th May. No exceptions.

You are proud of Norway. 17th May is the most important day of the year, better than Christmas, birthday and Eurovision put together. The Norwegian Constitution Day is a day celebrated by all Norwegians and Norgesvenner (see above).

Get up, eat Norwegian food, wear a bunad (see above) sing songs about how much you love Norway. Wave flags around a lot. Ice cream. Waffles (see above). Brown cheese (see above). Repeat. Follow with alcohol (possibly purchased in Sweden). Forget how you got home, but wake up loving Norway even more than before.

Happy 17th May, everybody - see you at the ScandiKitchen or the park.

17.mai_london 

April 17, 2014

Easy Easter Smorgasbord - a guide

Smörgasbord-0-10_original (1)


A traditional smörgåsbord doesn’t have to be complicated. It is, in essence, the Nordic version of a buffet, so as long as you follow a few traditional rules and know when to eat which bit, you won’t go wrong. We basically have the same smörgåsbord for every high season, with a few seasonal dish changes.

This version is designed so that you can shop and put it together in a morning, provided you’re organised about the whole thing. For this reason, we have provided UK supermarket equivalents for some ingredients, but if you do have time, pop by our shop and pick up the authentic Nordic essentials or make everything from scratch if you want to impress.

The basics

How to serve and arrange a smörgåsbord.

Laying the table: Arrange in the middle of the table or, if serving for many people, at a side serving table. Served as a lunch and should take around 2-3 hours to eat. The focus here is on slow eating and drinking, with much talking and being together.

Drinks: Lagers such as Tuborg and Carlsberg will provide authenticity – but any good bottled lager is fine. Wine is fine, but less traditional (wine really doesn’t go with herring and shots of aquavit).

Aquavit (aka snaps): We recommend shots of a good, super-chilled OP Andersson or Ålborg. Crisp and strong, they’re perfect partners for pickled herring. If you can’t get hold of aquavit, you can use chilled Absolut Vodka. Leave the bottle in the freezer for a good few hours before serving in shot glasses.

How to arrange the dishes

If arranging on a separate buffet table (recommended for 15 people or more), always arrange the fish at one end, starting with the herring, followed by any other fish dishes. Follow it with cold meats, then warm meats, side dishes and finally bread and butter. Cheese can be placed by the bread section or served separately at the end as a cheese board. Dessert is not brought out until the main smörgåsbord has been eaten. If arranging the food where people are sitting around a table, add all fish dishes first, then cold meats. Bring out any warm dishes as needed. The main thing is to let your guests know that they have to:

1) Always start with herring and aquavit (butter some rye bread or crisp bread, add a few slices of herring on top, eat with a knife and fork, drink a shot of aquavit, and everybody cheers together).

2) Once the herring is eaten, enjoy any other cold fish dishes – from prawns to salmon, egg with roe, and so on. Make your own little open sandwiches on the plate, but always use knife and fork. Never hands!

3) Sliced meats are next, and so on. Then repeat.

4) Warm dishes come next!

5) Replenish as you see fit throughout. We graze for hours, going back to our favourite sections again and again.

Plate arrangement

Arrange each seating with a large plate for main part of the meal and one small plate on top, for herring only. Herring has a very strong flavour, so once everybody’s done with it, the first plates are usually collected so the rest of the meal isn’t herring-flavoured. If you hate washing up or simply just love meatballs that taste of herring, knock yourself out.

Singing

We do like to sing a few songs as we drink our snaps. These are called ‘Snaps-visor’. After a couple of shots of aquavit, it is generally accepted that most people speak fluent Danish, even if they come from Middlesbrough and the closest they have been to Copenhagen is watching The Killing. Plenty of songs to be found on the internet. If you don’t fancy trying real Nordic songs, just pretend to be the Swedish Chef from the Muppets.

Every family has they own version and way to make a smörgåsbord. This is our version – make changes as you see fit. There is no smörgåsbord police (there might be smörgåsbord police in Sweden, actually).

ScandiKitchen’s Easy Easter Smörgåsbord for six people

Two kinds of herring

  • 1 jar of ABBA Mustard herring
  • 1 jar of ABBA Onion herring

Waitrose and Ocado have good versions of pickled herring, but don’t go for rollmops, as those are too sour.

Prawns and boiled eggs

6 hard boiled eggs, halved, placed on a serving dish. Add a bit of mayonnaise on each egg half and top with good quality prawns

Smoked salmon with lemon

Arrange about 60-70g of smoked salmon per person on a serving tray. Decorate with lemon wedges and a bit of fresh dill

Gravadlax Salad

Fold together in a bowl the following:

  • 200g gravlax cured salmon cut into bite size pieces
  • 150g cooked, cooled, sliced new potatoes
  • 100g blanched asparagus cut in pieces
  • A handful of green peas
  • 100g cooked, cooled green beans
  • 8-10 halved cherry tomatoes
  • 1-2 tablespoons of dill and mustard sauce

Arranged on a serving tray, top with chopped chives

Dill & mustard sauce:

You can make your own or get it at our place.

Most UK supermarkets have some form of it too these days.

Sliced and cold meats tray

6 slices of good quality ham

12 slices of Danish salami (or whichever you prefer)

Pork liver pâté – we love Stryhn’s or Per I Viken, but you can go for a good quality UK version too – just keep it smooth.

Warm dishes

Meatballs. Always meatballs.

Make your own, or use a ‘Swedish Meatball’ variety from the supermarket to keep it simple

In Sweden, we also eat a lot of ‘prinskorv’ mini sausages (heated).

We stock these, but you can get frankfurters in supermarket and cut to smaller pieces and serve alongside the meatballs

Where’s the lamb?

We actually don’t eat much lamb on the Easter buffet table. We agree that this does seem like a bit of an oversight. If you want lamb, have lamb. Make a small lamb roast and serve alongside the warm dishes. Lamb goes well with Jansson’s Temptation

Additional Side dishes

Choose as many of these to make as you fancy… (you do not need to make them all)

Beetroot Salad

  • 300g jar of drained beetroot, chopped
  • Mix with mayonnaise and crème fraîche until you have a pink creamy mixture.
  • Add salt, pepper, lemon juice (and sugar, if too tart). Leave to set.

Cheat: Ocado sells real ScandiKitchen Beetroot Salad. As do we in the shop

New potato salad

  • 500g of new potatoes, cooked and cooled.
  • Mix with a simple vinaigrette and chopped red onion.

Cheat: Buy a potato salad, but not the type drenched in mayonnaise

Jansson’s Temptation (warm)

A potato and cream gratin made with Swedish Grebbestads Ansjovis

(NEVER anchovies - this is one dish where no alternatives will suffice) and cream

(approx. 1 hour prep time)

Cheat: Get a potato gratin at the supermarket. Add small amount of chopped Grebbestads Ansjovis before baking

Västerbotten Paj (warm)

Swedish cheese quiche (1 hour prep time plus pasty making)

Cheat: Buy a good quality cheese quiche

Skagenröra (Swedish seafood salad)

  • 200g prawns and 200g crayfish trails, mix with chopped chives and chopped dill
  • Add a gentle helping of mayonnaise
  • Salt, pepper, finely chopped shallot. Combine.
  • Cheat: Add some chives and seasoning to a prawn mayonnaise.

Gubbröra (Egg and fish salad)

  • 3 hard-boiled eggs, chopped
  • Finely chopped shallot onion
  • 6 chopped fillets of Swedish Grebbestads Ansjovis
  • OR chopped matjes herring (as preferred)
  • Chopped chives, pepper.

Mix together. Serve in a bowl.

If you prefer a creamier version, add a dollop of crème fraîche.

Egg & Roe 

Arranged sliced, boiled eggs on a serving tray. Top with either Kalle’s Kaviar (creamed cod roe, in a tube, available in the shop or at Ocado)

or

Dollops of lumpfish roe kaviar and finely chopped shallot onion.

Sauces, pickles, dressings (As needed).

Bowls of pickled cucumber, sliced pickled beetroot, Mustards, mayonnaises, remoulade. And whatever condiments you fancy.

Bread

  • Selection of crisp bread (we love Leksands and Pyramid from the shop)
  • Selection of sliced rye bread
  • Crusty white bread
  • Butter
  •  

Cheese selection

Our ideal cheese selection would be:

  • Västerbotten cheese (Our place, Waitrose, Ocado)
  • Norwegian Brown Cheese (our place, Ocado)
  • Riberhus Danish cheese (our place)

A good quality blue cheese

Cheat: Get whatever cheese you like.

Dessert (optional)

Cloudberry Mess

Arrange in each serving glass:

  • 1 lightly crushed meringue nest
  • 1 dollop of whipped cream
  • 1 scoop of good vanilla ice cream
  • Heat up some cloudberry jam – and pour 1 tbsp. hot jam on top just before serving.

March 21, 2014

Waffle Day 25th March - 'Våffeldagen'

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Waffle Day (25th March) began in Sweden as Våffeldagen, allegedly due to confusion between the Swedish “vårfrudagen” meaning “Our Lady’s Day” which falls on the same date. The day historically marks the beginning of spring and is celebrated by the eating of many, many waffles.

Nordic waffles are made in a special heart-shape waffle iron. The waffles are sweet and soft – and best eaten straight out of the iron, with jam and whipped cream. Or brown cheese, if you are Norwegian.

Pop by all day Tuesday 25th for waffles at the café.  Get any coffee and a waffle for a fiver - available all day.

Or make some waffles at home - here's a recipe that our Marte uses. There are as many recipes as there are families in Scandinavia - this is the one we use at ScandiKitchen.

If you don't have a waffle maker, you can buy them on Amazon and ebay.

March 07, 2014

WIN 'The Edible Atlas' by Mina Holland

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Sometimes, a book lands on our desk for a competition that we really don't want to tell anyone about just so we can keep it to ourselves! This is one such book. We think every serious foodie should have a copy of this. 

Mina Holland (follow Mina here) has written an amazing book entitled The Food Atlas - about food from all over the globe; a journey of 39 cuisines. How we eat it, why we eat it... It's even got a bit about our corner of the world in the book (and we're pleased to see a recipe for Danish Dream Cake making an appearance). THE EDIBLE ATLAS explores what and why people eat as they do across the world, demystifying the flavours, ingredients, techniques and dishes at the heart of thirty-nine different cuisines. With fully adaptable recipes to suit beginners and confident cooks alike, learn to recreate dishes from all over the globe.

We've got a copy of this book to give to a lucky winner. To be in with the a chance to win Mina's book, just answer this easy question:

Norwegian band 'Ylvis' sang a (quite annoying) song called...

a) What does the herring say?

b) What does the fox say?

c) What does the Swede say?

Answers to iloveherring@scandikitchen.co.uk before noon on Thursday 13th March 2014. Winner will be notified by email. Only one prize, no cash alternative, usual rules apply. No cheating. 

Russell Norman (from 'The Restaurant Man') says: "The Edible Atlas deserves a place on every serious cook’s bookshelf. Intelligent, informative, entertaining and very handsome. Mina Holland’s prose is as engaging as her recipes. She is an exciting and authoritative new voice in the world of cookery and food writing."

‘Fascinating, telling some fantastic stories about a broad range of cuisines … The food cries to be cooked’ YOTAM OTTOLENGHI

BUY MINA'S BOOK 'The Edible Atlas' here 

February 27, 2014

WIN a box of SEMLOR for the office

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Ahhhh.... Imagine if there was a way to make friends with Shirley from HR in one clean swoop? Or get Brian from accounts to notice you?

Try giving them a tray of freshly baked semlor. Oh, and now you can maybe even get your hands on a whole tray of these lovely buns for free.

To be in with a chance to be Mr or Ms popular in the office (or indeed, take them all home and eat them all to yourself), just answer this easy question:

Eighties Swedish band Europe had a hit with which song:

a) All That She Wants (is another baby)

b) The Final Countdown

c) Saturday Night

Answer to iloveherring@scandikitchen.co.uk before Monday noon (3rd March).

No cash alternative, prize must be picked up from the cafe (date by arrangement - please book in the pick up so we know), one tray of semlor is 10 buns. No cheating. Winner picked at random. Usual rules apply.

 

January 30, 2014

WIN a box of our favourite liquorice selection

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To celebrate our liquorice week at ScandiKitchen, we're giving away a selection box of our favourite liquorice.

The lovely gift box contains:

Tyrkisk peber (both normal and firewood), Johan Bulow No 2 Salty, Franske Saltpastiller, Skolekridt chalks, Salty fish, Super Piratos, Lakrisal, Marabou Black Chocolate, Skipper's Pipes and Djungelvrål.

Want to win a selection of our Top Ten?  You better like licourice, then. Or know someone who does.

To be in with a chance of winning, answer the following question:

Salmiakki is a word originating from which language?

a)  Norwegian

b)  Icelandic

c)  Finnish

Email your answer before Midday Wednesday 5th Feb 2014 to iloveherring@scandikitchen.co.uk  – usual rules apply. No cheating. No cash alternative. 

Liquorice: A mini guide.

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LAKRIDS, LIQUORICE, LICOURICE... 

We Nordics have a favourite pass time: to try and get non-liquorice lovers to taste the stuff we enjoy eating by the bucket load. We cannot comprehend why you do not enjoy these (usually) super salty and often peppery sweets.

To be fair, we are aware that liquorice is one of those tastes that have to be developed over time. The enjoyment of liquorice (to us) start in the sweetie shops when we’re kids and it grows over a great number of years. By the time we’re adults, we’re so accustomed to the taste of salty liquorice that we can eat the liquorice-equivalent of crack and still think straight. Most likely, we can consume bags at the time.

First, the nature bit: Liquorice comes from the liquorice root. It’s a plant that has medicinal powers known for centuries. Admittedly, commercial liquorice isn’t that similar to the root. However, did you know that pure liquorice is actually 20 times sweeter than sugar? 

Liquorice is popular all across the world but especially in Europe.  The further North you go, the saltier we like it.  The Nordic countries as well as the Netherlands, seem to have developed the taste for the particularly Strong Black Stuff. Many believe this is because the salty/sweet combo is very much part of our food heritage.

When you talk about Salty Liquorice, what we usually mean is Salmiakki.  The word Salmiakki is a Finnish word and we prefer using that because the actual word is Ammonium Chloride, which doesn’t sound so nice. Ammonium Chloride is a powder that taste like salt, but isn't really actual salt as you know it. It’s this stuff that gives some of our liquorice the distinct edge of saltiness. But let’s just call it Salmiakki, shall we? Or saltlakrids, if you want to be specific about it.

The way to start appreciating liquorice is to start with the mild stuff then slowly move towards the saltier varieties, much like you would when enjoying spicy foods.  There are many varieties of liquorice – from the gourmet to the less gourmet, from the mild to the super strong… Where to start? 

Here’s our mini-guide to some of our favourite liquorice – and a guide to the strength, as measured in good old skulls.

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Our favourite has to be the gourmet liquorice by Danish maker Johan Bülow. When we say gourmet, we really do mean gourmet: hand made using the finest raw ingredients. Not strong, just very fine liquorice.

No skulls - this stuff is very mild, although Liquorice number 5 does have a good kick at the end as it has added chilli.  For beginners, try number one - the sweet one.  

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Tyrkisk Peber.  The most infamous of Nordic liquorice, these babies come in the original super hot flavour (boiled sweets with a peppery inside).  We also love the Firewood selection: chewy, but less strong. Still, we rate both as 3-skull due to the consistent salmiakki delivery while eating.

if you get hold of a few bags of the blue one, crush the sweets then add them to a bottle of vodka. Leave for a week or so to marinade - and voila! A very salty pepper shot. Also know as 'Little Grey Ones' in Denmark ('Små Grå). 

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Lakrifun / Skolekridt.  A firm childhood favourite, these little sweet 'chalks'. The liquorice centre is sweet with a slight hit of salt. Coated in a white sugary glaze. A great sweet – most people will admit to liking this after a few tries. 1 skull

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Djungelvraal – literally, JungleScream. Sweet liquorice covered in salmiakki. Initially the shock is a 3 skull taste – but quickly you will realise it is just the coating. If you can take the initial ten seconds, you can join the club. The rest is easy.

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Marabou Black – yes, chocolate with liquorice in it. Also available in the Salmiakki version by Fazer. Eating chocolate and salty liquorice together is something only true lakriphiles do. The liquorice enjoyment is long, drawn out and constant. Not strong, just very liquorice.   Is it really called lakriphile?

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Lakrisal -little liquorice powder tablets. A bit of a kick, but nothing serious.  A good salmiakki starter. 1-2 skulls.

 

Tyrkisk 

Super Piratos – salty liquorice coins. Actually, this is the extra salty version. If you can eat this, you’re in the club. 3 skulls.

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Franske Saltpastiller – French salt pastilles. Also a good beginner at 1 skull strength. Blue and white coated sugar sweets with slightly salty liquorice inside. Chewy. Not really French; doesn’t even know how to ask for directions to the nearest Metro. 

 

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Liquorice pipes – under threat from the EU and might be banned, the pipes are sweet and not strong. And a bit fun, too.  One skull strength. Great for starters and for pretending you are some kind of weird liquorice pipe eating pirate or sailor. 


Salty_Fish copySalty Fish – those Swedish Fish, but the liquorice version. 1 skull strength with a nice salty finish. A good beginner fish.

We're celebrating a bit of a liquorice week at ScandiKitchen Cafe starting 31st January.  Pop by and have a few tasters, chat to us about the strong stuff and get advise on what to try. We'll be most happy to try and help you develop your own liquorice addiction.

Click here to shop for liquorice in our online store.

 

January 23, 2014

Five easy ways to use Lingonberries at home

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With all the chat in the media about the amazing Nordic Lingonberry and how it fights off the fat, we thought we'd give you a few ideas on how to incorporate more Lingonberries into your day to day.

Lingonberries come in several forms. Firstly, fresh - this is very hard to get hold of outside the Nordics. Secondly, you can get it frozen (right here) and thirdly, in a jam style jelly (the most common form). We also love Lingonberry cordial and juices.

In Scandinavia, Lingonberry Jam is used a bit like cranberry sauce is in the UK: with savoury dishes. We love a good dollop of lingonberry jam with our meatballs, for example, or game dishes. Some people do use it as a jam on toast as well, but it is mostly used as a savoury sidekick.

Five nifty ways to add lingonberry to your daily foodie routines:

1) Lingonberry porridge. Make a simple porridge of oats, water and milk. When it starts to thicken, add a good handfull of frozen lingonberries. Keep stirring until they are incorporated and heated through. We serve this lovely 'pink porridge' at ScandiKitchen all the time. It has a slighty tart taste to it. Add sugar if desired. We also love it served with mixed seeds on top.

2) Add frozen lingonberries to your morning smoothie or juice. Because it is not a sweet berry, best pair with sweeter fruits. We think it works quite well in a banana based smoothie - add a pinch of cinnamon too and a squeeze of orange.

3) Easy red cabbage salad: Sliced raw red cabbage, diced pears, a dollop of lingonberry jam and creme fraiche to lightly coat. Season with salt. Add berries for extra tartness. 

4) Use Lingonberry jam (along with extra berries) on top of a sweet cheese cake.

5) Make a soft gingerbread cake ('Mjuk Pepparkaka') and add a cup of lingonberries to the mixture. Alternatively, make a vanilla buttercream icing and add a handful of lingonberries before spreading on a cake. 

Enjoy!

Tuut tuut, that's our trumpet blowing... And our recipes.

We were in S-Magazine in The Sunday Express last Sunday.  

Starring roles to our open roast beef sandwich, Jansson's Temptation, Vasterbotten Pie, Kladdkaka, Marte's Kale & Grape salad and the infamous Apple Cake that we serve at the cafe.

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Lingonberries - the new super berry

Ahhh, we knew it already, but now the cat is out of the bag: Lingonberries are the new super berry according to researchers at Lund University. 

Read the article here 

It can be very hard to get hold of Lingonberries in the UK - but we stock them frozen at the cafe in 500g packs. Perfect to keep a stash in your freezer so you can add a handful of berries to your morning smoothie or on top of your yoghurt or cereal.

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December 20, 2013

We've got loads of stuff left on the shelves... (Stock update 20/12)

Hello. This update about stock at our London store is posted 13:30 on 20th December.

We've still got julmust, prinskorv, vortbrod, leverpostej, marsipangrise, julskum, rodkaal, cherry sauce, nougat, marzipan, aebleskiver, rye bread, herring and Blossa glogg and much much more.

We're aiming not to run out. Of course, we may - but for now, we're still stocked to high heavens so pop by and help us clear those shelves. 

Oh, and we're doing buy-one-lussekatt saffron bun and get one free - all weekend. Until we simply cant bake anymore.

See you soon

The Elves x

December 11, 2013

Sankta Lucia - the festival of light

Swedish Lucia For Dummies from Sweden on Vimeo.

This Friday the 13th December is the day of St Lucia and the festival of light. On this day across Scandinavia you will find processions of boys and girls dressed all in white bearing candles and singing carols. This is usually done in the morning darkness, welcoming the light. 

At the front of each procession is a Lucia Bride, wearing a wreath or crown on her head with four or five candles.

On this day, we drink ‘Glögg’ mulled wine and eat either saffron buns (Lussebullar) or little pancake balls called ‘Æbleskiver’. We also over-do the ginger biscuits. Really, way too many ginger biscuits...

The history of St Lucia can be traced back to St Lucia of Syracuse, a martyr who died in 304 – however, the date of St Lucia is also a pagan date.  It was the darkest night where spirits were free to roam and animals begin to talk. So, light was needed to ward of spirits. today's tradition is a bit of a blend of the two.

On Friday we will be serving Glögg and Saffron buns all day and playing carols on repeat.  

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November 21, 2013

Nordic Christmas Markets 2013 - this weekend 22, 23, 24 November

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This week and weekend is on of the biggest in the Nordic ex-pat calendar. It’s the week of the Christmas Fairs.

We support these fairs wholeheartedly and we absolutely love going along and help if we can. The different organisation and Churches play a very important role to all Nordic ex-pats both for general support, religious support, as a meeting point, cultural centres and just simply nice places to be and visit.

Here’s the low down for this weekend’s markets in London:

Swedish Church Christmas Fair - Marylebone

A really wonderful and warm welcome to all at the Swedish Church in Harcourt Street. Open Thursday till 20:00 and all day Saturday and Sunday. We specifically recommend the traditional Glögg mulled wine, a secret recipe by The Reverend Mikael Persson, the Swedish Priest. Heavenly (Excuse the pun). We went to the pre-view yesterday and got our hands on Pippi Longstocking umbrellas and fancy knitted kid's strawberry hats!

Swedish Church is on Harcourt Street W1 - directions here www.swedishchurch.com

Norwegian Church Christmas Fair - Rotherhide

Everything from waffles to lompe, mulled wine and a lot of Norwegian ‘Jule’ cheer. The Norwegian Church in Rotherhide is a huge cultural centre for all things Norwegian – and Norwegian people and friends of Norway. The food market is huge and bulging with goodies.

ScandiKitchen will have a stand right outside the Norwegian Church where we will be serving hot mulled wine.

Sjømannskirkens Julebasar is on 22-24 November 10:00-18:00

How to get to the Norwegian Church (nearest tube Rotherhide) click here

Danish KFUK YMCA Christmas Bazaar – Hampstead

This event is a pilgrimage for a lot of ex pat Danes every year. It’s extremely busy and packed but worth a trip – they have everything from hotdogs to Christmas beers and real Danish ‘hygge’ feelings. They do a lot of decorations too – from calendar advent candles to ceramics so you can pick up a few prezzie.

Dansk KFUK’s Julebazar is on 23/24 November 10-17.  Find the Danish Bazar here

The Finnish Church in London Christmas Market

A warm welcome and genuine Christmas cheer awaits you at the Finnish Church in Rotherhide – everything from ‘squeaky cheese’ and Rye pastries with egg (Karelian Pies) and cinnamon buns as well as a huge food market. Open all this week until Sunday at 17:00.

ScandiKitchen will be there as we are part of the Scandi Christmas Market taking place between the Norwegian and Finnish church – so pop over and see us.

Nearest tube is Rotherhide; here’s a map Click here

Scandinavian Christmas Market 2013

Scan Events are doing the Scandi Christmas Market again this year in Rotherhide, outside the Finnish and Norwegian Churches.  Open Fri, Sat and Sun all day – pop by and say hello to us, we’ll also be there, selling hotdogs and warm mulled wine. Say hi to our team: Marte, Linnea, Jonas, Little Jonas, Torben and Kaisla.

More about Scandinavian Christmas Market here

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October 01, 2013

FREE buns for 'Kanelbullens Dag' - Day of the Cinnamon Bun 4th October 2013

Friday 4th October is the day of the cinnamon bun all across Sweden.

We're celebrating all day in the cafe with freshly baked buns, tasters, recipe cards and much more.

Use the voucher below to get your hands on a freshly baked bun when you pop by for your morning coffee - valid from 8 am until 11 am in store.

Print the voucher or simply show it to us on your fancy smart phone. To save, right click the image and save onto your computer. To save on your phone, save the picture into your camera roll.

Please see terms and conditions on the voucher.

See you Friday x

Ps - if you are thinking of ordering a large amount of buns for Friday to treat your colleagues or just stuff your face, please mail us in advance to book as we expect to be quite busy

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September 10, 2013

Sweet dreams are made of cheese (a mini-guide to Scandinavian cheeses)

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Many of us have memories of sitting in a field on a summer’s day eating crusty French bread and sharing a kilo of creamy brie.  In fact, some of us would like to spend most of our days doing just that, if it was not for the eventual need to then be moved around by a pick-up truck.

Less people have such glorious thoughts when thinking about Scandinavian cheese – in fact, most people associate Scandinavian cheese with Eurovision.  Except those of us who know just how many amazing cheeses actually come from our northern corner of the world.

Even back in the days when old Harold Bluetooth was a nipper and busy taking over the world, the Scandinavians made cheese.  In fact, the old Vikings had a diet rich in milk, butter and cheese and are even said to have found cheese to be a sexual stimulant.

Here’s a guide to some of the top Scandinavian cheeses

1.  Gammelost (Old cheese)
A recipe dating back to the Viking times, “Old cheese” needed very little help to mature.  Most people say both taste and smell resembles something that has spent a few months inside a sweaty old sock.  As you know, nothing pleases a true tyrophile more than a slice of stinky old sock. Admittedly, perhaps due to the taste, younger Norwegians are falling out of love with it, even if it is does have the nickname of Norwegian Viagra.

2.  Danablu (Danish Blue)
We had to include this as it is the most popular export and it is a darn fine cheese.  Invented originally to emulate Roquefort, and quickly making its own mark on the cheese scene, Danablu has a sharp, salty note and is excellent served on just about any kind of bread. Mash it with a bit of syrup to change its character and use it to spread on crisp bread, topped with some sunflower seeds – it really works.  Swedes tend to love blue cheese on ginger biscuits (we say don’t argue with anyone who invented Billy bookcases, Volvos and the zipper).

3.  Brunost (Brown cheese) 
Comes in many different varieties: the two best known are the Gudbrandsdalen (cow and goat) and Ekte Gjeitost (pure goat); the latter is the connoisseur’s choice

Okay, so it’s an acquired taste, but, on average, Norwegians eat about 4 kilos each of this stuff a year so there must be something to it.  It’s as Norwegian as trolls and fjords.  It looks a bit like a block of plasticine, tastes a bit like caramel and is enjoyed on its own, on open sandwiches or with freshly baked waffles:  all you need then is a patterned jumper and people will soon start calling you Haakon.

4.  Rygeost (smoked cheese)
A very Danish invention that is never exported due to its very short shelf life.  Unmatured, smoked cheese made from buttermilk and milk and turned in less than 24 hours, after which it is smoked very quickly over a mixture of straw and nettle and topped with caraway seeds.  This cheese is simply amazing, light and divine eaten on a piece of rye bread.  Resembles a firm ricotta in texture.

5. Vasterbotten
If ABBA is the queen of cheese, Vasterbotten is the king.  A firm, crumbly, aged Swedish cheese not unlike parmesan in smell but with immense flavour and character.  This cheese is a welcome addition to any cheeseboard and is also a partner to any crayfish party.  Can also be used to make the excellent Vasterbotten pie.

6. Hushallsost 
A cheese that has a name that translates as “household cheese” sounds like it belongs on a value shelf in a corner shop in Hackney, but it is actually an excellent cheese.  Mild, creamy, full of holes, this cheese is usually a big hit with the younger generation.  Hushallsost is one of six Swedish food products with a so-called TSG protection (one other cheese, Svecia, also holds this distinction).  Taste-wise it is a bit like the Danish Havarti cheese in texture (the Danes’ favourite and widely available in the UK), although less creamy.  Produced by Arla, Havarti is called Aseda Graddost in Sweden.  In Finland, the Turunmaa cheese is what is closest to Havarti in taste.

7.  Gamle Ole (Old Ole)
A sliceable mature Danish cheese, this baby stinks.  Don’t touch it too much or your fingers will honk all day.  The taste, however, is really lush.  Also known in Denmark as Danbo 45, there are many varieties in the same vein:  ‘Sorte Sara’ is a good version too.  A superb finish to any smorgasbord, eat a slice or two on sourdough bread topped with some lingon jam.  Other excellent strong Danes include Esrom 45 as well as Viggo Mortensen (he’s not a cheese, but he sure looks very strong).

8.  Präst ost (Priest cheese)
Sweden’s most popular cheese.  It was given its name because the farmers at the time it was invented could pay their church taxes in dairy products.   Präst ost comes in many varieties, from the mild to the mature and flavoured with anything from vodka to whisky.

9. Leipäjuusto (also known as “squeaky cheese”)
This is a fresh young cheese from Finland.  The milk is curdled and set into a flat round shape, then baked.  In the olden days it was dried for months and people put it on the fire to re-activate it.  The name comes from the sound it makes when you bite into it.  The taste is not unlike feta.

10. Rejeost (Prawn cheese)
For some reason, spreadable prawn cheese is immensely popular across all of Scandinavia.  Not really a great cheese from a connoisseur’s point of view, but surely any product that manages to combine cheese and prawns and make it taste good needs a mention.  If cheese and prawn can be coupled in peaceful harmony, then there’s hope for world peace.

Shop for cheese here 

August 21, 2013

Kransekage / Kransekake - the traditional Nordic celebration cake

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Kransekage / Kransekake literally means ‘ring cake’. It’s a traditional Norwegian and Danish celebration cake (Weddings, Christenings, New Year’s Eve and National Days… ) made from baked marzipan, shaped into rings and then stacked as high as required. It’s very rich so not much is needed (it’s usually served at the Coffee course – a bit as a petit four).

As you can imagine, a real kransekage is made from pure almond paste (nothing like the cheap stuff used for normal cake decorating). It’s a hard cake to make, taking many hours of shaping, baking and decorating.

We don’t make these at Scandikitchen – but we get asked about these cakes a lot and we recommend our good friend Karen from Karen’s Kitchen.

You can contact Karen’s Kitchen via her facebook page right here or ping her an e-mail.  She's vry nice and super skilled in this department. In fact, she makes great cakes for all occasions. Tell her we said 'Hi'.

If you're thinking of making your own, this is the type of marzipan you need to make the real deal: Click here to buy Anton Berg 60% 'ren rå' marzipan 

July 30, 2013

Kräftskiva 2013 - Crayfish Party at home

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A crayfish party by the river. We found this photo on t'internet, sorry, it had no credit. If it is yours, let us know and we'll credit your photo. Thanks. 


We love this time of year. Time to seek out some friends and invite them round your gaff for some serious crayfish eating - and probably enough schnapps drinking to keep you wobbly until Christmas (we recommend any of these babies to keep you merry CLICK HERE).

If you want to host a crayfish party at your house, you can order the entire menu from us and just pick it up on the day. Then all you have to do is call your friends and find someone who doesn't mind clearing up afterwards while you yourself spend time dancing on your coffee table (on one leg) whilst singing "Helan går".

Crayfish buffet

at your house

Freshwater crayfish (around 600 grams per person)   

Romsås, Dillsås and mayonnaise  

Selection of pickled mustard herring and onion pickled herrings  

Västerbotten paj (Swedish mature cheese quiche)

New Potato salad with dill vinaigrette

Vine tomato, baby spinach and feta cheese salad

A selection of Scandinavian cheeses (Västerbotten and Greve)

Freshly baked crusty bread & crispbread

Sticky Swedish chocolate cake (Kladdkaka) with Daim Cream

Price per person only

£27 

See the whole menu here and download it CLICK HERE
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July 18, 2013

Crayfish Season 2013 has begun at Scandi Kitchen - reserve now

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Over the next few months, it is all going to be about Crayfish ('Kräftor" here as we enter the Nordic Crayfish season.

You can pre-book your stash of crayfish here on our online store and choose delivery at a date of your choice (we ship across the UK) - or pick up in our London store. Just click right here

Hats and bibs will be added later - and we'll also have a crayfish-party (Kräftskiva) catering option for you coming up.

Our crayfish are 1kg boxes (note: a full 1kg, not 700g).  They come frozen and ready cooked, so just defrost and serve.

Price per 1 kg £12.95 - buget 600g per person for a real crayfish party.

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Secret Scandinavia: Bronte's favourite Danish summer hideaway

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A while back Bronte was asked to recommend a super secret local spot in Denmark that you’d only know about if you were a local. She remembered this amazing place where she is from called Reersø (population 511).

It’s a teeny penunsular (attached only slightly to the main island of Zealand - and in fact it used to be an island back in the day). Famous for centuries for its fishing and local fish dishes (in particular, smoked mackerel and eel), this little secret spot is hard to find but possibly as Danish as you’ll ever get. It's a really old village full of wonderful Danish farming and fishing heritage.

To get to Reersø you need to take a plane to Copenhagen, then a train to Slagelse. From there bus 432 (it doesn’t go very often and it takes quite a while: be patient). 

We recommend trying the local ‘Reersø Kro’ which is a 300 year old pub: they serve amazing local fish and seafood. Stay at the campsite or at the Inn. Great beaches, lovely sailing opportunities, wind surfing, lots of fishing and hunting (if you’re into that). There are no bars, no nightlife, no shops except a little grocery market. Just the smell of the sea and cats with no tails (yes, this is a place full of Manx Cats - thought to be introduced here centuries ago from an Isle of Man ship wreck).

Got dosh to spare? This is what £500,000 will buy you on Reersø Peace and quiet here

Got only £80K to spare? Get this nifty little summer house

But it doesn’t really matter because unless you’re Danish, you can’t buy a summer house in Denmark. Oh, didn’t you know? Indeed, that is the law. Cheeky Danes. Wonder how they got away with that one .

Next week: Jonas’ secret summer place in Göteborg.

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                      Danish Habour Porpoise in Reersoø - Photo by Ole Agerbæk Sørensen

June 27, 2013

An Englishman tries Surströmming (Fermented herring)

We're not gonna lie to you: It really stinks. However, there's a reason it is a really popular dish in Sweden. 

Nothing is more fun, however, than to get non-scandies to open a tin of the the stinky herring and see their reaction. Big Steve From England has a youtube channel where he explores Swedishness as seen in the eyes of a Brit.

Here's a clip from the day he tried stinky fish.

You can buy Surstromming in our grocery store in London or online (delivery to all of UK) CLICK HERE TO BUY

June 20, 2013

Surströmming: The smelliest herring there is

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It's back in stock: Surströmming. Swedish fermented herring. It smells so bad you have to open it outside (and if you don't, well, we warned you).

On the other side, it tastes really nice.

Why would anyone actually eat something that smells so very bad? Because it tastes good. In Sweden, have have Surstromming parties and Surstromming appreciation societies.  We love the stuff.

You're not allowed to bring Surstroming back on the plane with you (in case the can breaks on the plane) - so it is hard to get hold of.  

Get your stash here http://www.scandikitchen.co.uk/products/Oskars-Surstromming-300g.html

We also stock it in the shop on Great Titchfield Street.

REMEMBER TO STORE THE TINS IN THE REFRIGIATOR AFTER PURCHASE - do not store ambient. Please. Don't.

Surstromming

 

May 23, 2013

Hammer time? Nope, coffee time...

We recommend forming a habit with either the Monmouth coffee we serve - or stock up on the Scandi diesel filter coffee, Gevalia. it will keep you going through endless status-meetings and conference calls.

Coffeetime

May 08, 2013

Swedish Hotdog Weekend 10-12 May 2013

Oh yes - Swedish hotdog weekend. Tell all the London Swedes!

Get yourself a Swedish sausage topped with mustard, ketchup and prawn salad.

Yes, prawn salad. Crazy Swedes.

This Fri, Sat and Sun from midday till close - enjoy with a cold beer or Pucko chocolate milk for just £5.

Hotswede

May 02, 2013

Celebrate our Cinnamon Bun week 7th May - 12th May 2013

We're going a bit bun-nanas next week.

When you pop by and show us the special bun-voucher, you get a cinnamon bun (Swedish Kanelbulle) free with any coffee or hot drink purchase from 8-midday.

Yes, really. 

Why? Because we think the wonders of the humble cinnamon bun should be felt by all.

You'll need a voucher to claim your bun (one per day person only: we have to safeguard your waistline somehow).  We're handing out vouchers all this week - but if you can't make it past the cafe, you can find a voucher to print just here Download KanelbulleVoucher

Ps Feel free to help us with bun-puns for our A-board outside.  Such as "Buns and Roses", "Bun Jour", "We like big buns and we cannot lie" and "Cinnamon Bun Paradiso".  You get the picture.

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April 29, 2013

Tell all the Norwegians... Hotdogs: Pølse med Lompe this Friday and Saturday

If there is one thing we know it is that Norwegians miss the hotdogs from home.  Good old 'polser' sausages, wrapped in a Lompe potato lefse type pancake.  Stuffed with cripsy onions, ketchup and mustard.

Best enjoyed with a Solo soft drink - or a cold beer.

Friday and Saturday this week (3rd and 4th May 2013) we're kick-starting our 'We Love Norway' month with special Norwegian hotdogs on sale.

Get both a cold Tuborg beer or Solo AND a hotdog for just £5.  We're wondering if you can find the same offer cheaper in Oslo? Do let us know.  

Lompe12

April 25, 2013

Danish HotDog Days with cold beer...

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February 08, 2013

Win (another) box of Semlor cream buns

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Last week's competition was so very popular we thought we'd do it again and help spread some more bun-joy around the place.

So, if you didn't win last week but want to have another go, you can.

To be in with a chance to win, answer this easy peasy question:

Scandinavian Lent buns are traditionally flavoured with what spice:

a)    Cardamom

b)    Paprika

c)    Saffron

Answer to iloveherring@scandikitchen.co.uk before Monday (11th Feb 2013) at noon.  Winner will get one box of Semlor (10 buns) - but must be able to pick them up from the cafe (we cannot send these out, sorry to all of you who happen to be outside London - these buns really don't travel well).

Usual terms apply. One winner only, chosen at random, no alternative prize, no cash alternative, no cheating and prize must be booked in for pick up before 18th February by the winner.

February 01, 2013

Want to win a box of Semlor?

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We've got a box of freshly made Semlor (Swedish lent buns) for one lucky person to win. Perfect way to make a lot of friends in the office (if you share, that is).

To be in with a chance to win, answer this easy peasy question:

Scandinavian Lent buns are traditionally eaten on which day:

a)    Skinny Wednesday

b)    Pudgy Friday

c)    Fat Tuesday

Answer to iloveherring@scandikitchen.co.uk before Monday (4th Feb 2013) at noon.  Winner will get one box of Semlor (10 buns) - but must be able to pick them up from the cafe (we cannot send these out, sorry to all of you who happen to be outside London - these buns really don't travel well).

Usual terms apply. One winner only, chosen at random, no alternative prize, no cash alternative, no cheating and prize must be booked in for pick up before 18th February by the winner.

December 09, 2012

Christmas Recipe: Ris a la Mandes (ris a la Malta) - Creamed rice Pudding

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This is one of the most popular and traditional Christmas desserts across Scandinavia.

Here's how to make it:

Ris à l’amande med kirsebærsauce - Danish Christmas rice pudding with cherry sauce

This is the traditional Christmas dinner dessert in Denmark - and if I do say so myself, it’s rather lighter than Christmas pudding!  Include a single whole almond in the rice pudding - the person who finds it should receive a gift, usually a box of fancy chocolates. Most people buy the cherry sauce, but if you want to make it, here’s how. 

Ingredients:

For the rice pudding:

Day 1

- 180g pudding rice

- 300ml water

- 1l whole milk

Day 2

- 100g blanched almonds

- seeds from two vanilla pods

- 4 tbsp sugar

- 250ml whipping cream

Most people buy the cherry sauce - there is enough to do at Christmas without having to start making a dessert sauce.  However, if you do fancy making it, here's how.

For the cherry sauce:

- 2 jars of cherries (300-350g each)

- 100ml cherry juice from the jars

- 1 tbsp potato flour or cornflour

- 2 tbsp caster sugar

Method:

- Put the water in a thick-bottomed saucepan and add the rice. Bring to the boil and cook for about 2 minutes.

- Turn down the heat and add the milk. Cook for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Cover the pan and simmer for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

- Once cooked, take the rice pudding off the heat and let it cool completely, then place in the fridge overnight.

- The next day, chop the almonds into chunky pieces, apart from one, which should be kept whole.

- Add the vanilla seeds, sugar and chopped almonds to the cold rice pudding and stir together.

- In a separate bowl, lightly whip the cream and fold it into the rice pudding. Finally, add the whole almond and stir in.

- Put the pudding back in the fridge for a few hours until you’re ready to serve it with warm cherry sauce.

- If you’re making your own cherry sauce, combine a small amount of the juice and potato flour (or cornflour) to make a ‘roux’, and set aside.

- In a saucepan, bring the sugar, cherries, and the rest of the juice to the boil.

- Add the ‘roux’, stirring constantly. Turn the heat to low until the sauce is ready so it doesn’t boil. Have a taste to see if more sugar is required, depending on what type of cherries you’ve used.

December 01, 2012

How to make Flaeskesteg - Roast Pork w crackling

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For a truly Danish Christmas, you have to serve Roast Pork - also known as Flæskesteg.

At Scandi Kitchen, we use a pork loin cut, scored across at 1 cm sections. Ask your butcher to do this as it is quite hard ot get right at home and the cut of the pork is really important to get the right type of crackling.

If you want to be super sure to get it right, we sell frozen pork loins from Denmark (Svinekam) already scored - just defrost and cook. There's a link here to the shop where you can buy these (limited stock).

Flæskesteg - Danish Christmas roast pork

This is the classic Christmas meal in Denmark. This recipe serves four people, at least.

Ingredients:

- 2kg loin of pork with the skin on, and scored all the way down to just before the flesh in lines 1cm apart (ask the butcher to do this if necessary)

- 1 carrot

- 1 onion

- 1 or 2 bay leaves

- 400-500ml boiling water

- few strigs of thyme

Method:

- Preheat your oven to 250°C.

- Place the pork joint skin side down (yes, ‘upside-down’) into a roasting tray. Add just enough boiling water to the tray so that the skin is submerged. 

- Put the pork in the oven for 20 minutes.

- Use a clean tea towel to hold the pork in the roasting tray so you don’t burn yourself while you carefully pour away the water.

- Turn the oven down to 160°C, then flip the pork over so it’s the right way up (skin up), and coat the skin with a generous amount of salt and pepper, making sure you get into the crevices created by the scoring. Be careful of your hands at this point, the pork will be hot! Stick the bay leaves into the crevices as well, then add the carrot, onion and thyme to the roasting tin, and pour 400-500ml fresh, cold water in.

- Put the pork back in the oven for about an hour or until it is done. Check about halfway through to see if you need to top up the water if it’s starting to evaporate too much.

- Using a meat thermometer, check the temperature of the pork after the hour. It should be somewhere between 68-70°C. Pour out the fatty residue into a bowl to use as stock for the gravy.

- Increase the oven temperature back up to 250°C and put the roast pork back in to make the crackling. This can take a good 15 minutes, so use the grill if you want to kickstart the process (but keep a close eye on it, or else you could end up with a burnt crackling).

- Remove the roast from the oven and check the temperature again. It should be between 70-75°C. This should mean it isn’t overcooked - pork can be terribly boring if you have to gnaw your way through it.

- Let the roast rest uncovered for about 10 minutes. While that’s happening, make the gravy from the fat and stock - use gravy browning if required.

Brunkartofler - Caramelised potatoes

A traditional accompaniment to Danish roast pork.  It's a bit sweet so we only eat these once a year.

Ingredients:

- 85g sugar

- 25g butter

- 1kg peeled and cooked small new potatoes (don’t be afraid to use tinned potatoes for this) - must be COLD.

Method:

- Add the sugar to a cold frying pan and spread it evenly across the bottom. Melt it on a high heat while you stir for about 2 minutes, then turn the heat down to medium while you add the butter. Turn up the heat to high again.

- Put the potatoes in a colander or sieve and run them under a cold tap, then add to the pan. As you can imagine, it’s going to splutter and spit a bit, so be careful.

- Get the potatoes covered in caramel and brown them for between 4-6 minutes, turning them carefully. If it looks like they’re getting a bit too dry, add a drop of water (again, take care doing this).

- Serve the caramelised potatoes along with normal boiled potatoes - as these are very sweet, they’re more of an extra side dish for the pork rather than a replacement for potatoes altogether.

NOTE: Always use potatoes that are completely cold. If you’re preparing them yourself, peel and cook them the day before. Each potato should be about 3-4cm in size - think salad potatoes. Tinned really is a good option for this dish.

Serve with warm, red cabbage.

Leftovers? Make Pyt-i-Panna.

November 23, 2012

Scandinavian Christmas Markets 2012 - (23,24,25 Nov 2012)

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It's the weeked for ALL the Scandi Christmas Markets in London

(23rd, 24th and 25th November 2012)

Swedish Church, Harcourt Street, London - Sat and Sun 11-6 (sat), 12-5 (sun) LINK HERE

Norwegian Church, St Olav's Square, Rotherhide 11-5 (Fri), 10-6 (Sat), 12-4 (Sun) LINK HERE

Finnish Church in London LONTOON SUOMALAINEN MERIMIESKIRKKO, Rotherhide 12-8 (Fri), 10-6 (Sat), 11-5 (Sun) - also continues through out next week LINK HERE

Danish YMCA Julemarked 43 Maresfield Gardens, Hampstead, 11-5 (Sat), 10-4 (Sun) LINK HERE

The Scandinavian Christmas Market - Outdoor market with loads of Scandi stalls, foods, presents, krims krams and nice hyggelige people  - Rotherhide, outside Finnish and Norwegian Church (yes, we're there, selling mulled wine and gingrbread dough, biscuits, delicato and more) LINK HERE

All a bit too much?  Pop by our shop. We'll put the coffee on, save you a piece of cake and always have time for a few hugs.  We're open as normal 10-18 Saturday and 10-17 Sunday.

God Jul x

Swedi

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Pimp my Gingerbread House 2012

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We're beyond excited to be able to announce this year's Pimp my Gingerbread House competition is OPEN for entries.

This year, we are chosing winners in the following categories:

Under 7's (with not too much help from grown ups)  Guest Judge: Corina from www.kidsen.co.uk

7-15 years old:  Guest judge Thomas Nash (last year's Kids Winner - see his house here)

Adult - for artistic talent.  Judges: Scandi Kitchen Team

Special prize - Most genuinely pimped up creative crazy house - Judges:  Scandi Kitchen Team (all houses will enter this extra category automatically)

The great Prizes:

Big Gift Box of Scandinavian Sweeties - so many Sweeties your parents might not talk to us for months (both for under 7's and 7-15 categories).  

Main Adult Prize: A huge christmas Hamper from Scandi Kitchen & voucher for lunch for two at SK

Special Prize for creative effort: Free coffee for a month (35 coffees) OR A nice Scandi Hamper (you choose which prize you prefer)

How to enter:

1)    Build a house using the kits from Anna's - you can buy it here and also in our store on Great Titchfield Street.

2)    Decorate it - whichever way you want.  We adore creativity.

3)    Take some pictures of your house and mail us the results iloveherring@scandikitchen.co.uk

Deadline for submitting your entry:  16th December 2012

By e-mailing us your photos you agree that we can publish them on our blog and website. Please do not send us your whole house, a photo will do thank you.

Please include your name, age if entering the children's competitions - and a story about why you have created this particular house.   

Get some inspiration:  See some of last years houses here 

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November 10, 2012

Meet Trine Hahnemann & Signe Johansen at Scandi Kitchen on Thu 15th Nov 2012

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UPDATE 13th NOVEMBER:  This event will also be attended by the wonderful Patrick Kingsley, author of the book "How to be Danish'.  Patrick will be on hand to sign books, chit chat about Denmark and his thoughts on what makes people Danish.

We adore both Trine and Signe's books and we have stocked all of their books for years.  From the first Scandilicious book to the The Scandinavian Cookbook and The Nordic Diet, we have read and loved them all.

We're super pleased to be able to invite you all to an evening of Meet the Authors at the cafe on Great Titchfield Street.

When:            Thursday 15th november 2012

Time:            18:00 (for a few hours)

What:         Signing of books, mugs of mulled wine, all your questions about Scandinavian cooking and baking answered by the experts. 

Cost:        Free.  

Bye for now

The Kitchen People

PS - Signed copies of some books available now in store and online 

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November 07, 2012

What exactly IS Falukorv? And a recipe for Korv Stroganoff

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Mention falukorv to a Swede and you're likely to evoke warm feelings about home cooking.

A staple of the Swedish cuisine, this sausage is very versatile and can be used in many different dishes. Falukorv ('Sausage from Falu') is a smooth sausage made with pork and beef.  

At Scandi Kitchen we stock a really nice Falukorv by the maker Per i Viken, a slow-food producer from Sweden.  Per i Viken's Falukorv is really smokey and meaty and works extremely well on its own, fried on the pan in butter - or as the main ingredient in the Swedish dish affectionaly known as 'Korv Stroganoff'.

The dish is a hit with most kids as it is quite mild in taste.  A very quick family meal to prepare, you can have the dish ready in 5 minutes - and then all you need to do is boil the rice to serve with it.

Here's our favourite Korv Stroganoff recipe - do try it.  All you need from Scandi Kitchen is a Falukorv Sausage per 4 people you serve - and right now, we have a special offer of 50% off.  This is all part of our plan to get those amazing every day Swedish dishes to be part of your dinner table over here too.

Korv Stroganof (Swedish Sausage Stroganoff)

Serves 4 people

1  Falukorv sausage (from Scandinavian delicatessens) - we absolutely prefer Per i Viken.  Buy it here 

1  Chopped onion

A good squeeze of tomato puree

1 tin of 400g chopped tomatoes

150 ml crème fraiche (of for less fatty version, half milk, half crème fraiche).

In a thick bottomed saucepan, add a dash of oil.  Add chopped onion and roughly chopped sausage and cook until the onion is soft (Falukorv is already cooked so just needs heating).  Add the puree, stir, then add the tin of tomatoes.  Season well to taste (we usually add a pinch of paprika to ours – and a bayleaf) and leave to simmer for a few minutes, then stir in the crème fraiche.

Serve with boiled rice.

Yes, it is THAT easy.

Love

The Kitchen People x

 

November 05, 2012

Trine Hahnemann's Scandi Christmas courses

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As you know, we love Trine.  She's ace.  

We're super excited to be able to help spread the word about her Scandi Christmas Cooking Courses at Food52 in Islington - she is hosting both Scandi Baking and Christmas entertaining.

There's also a course that offers parents a chance to bake with their children - a really wonderful idea and the perfect pre-Christmas gift.

More info right here

Quote Scandi Kitchen when you book and get 20% off the course price.

Trine will also be at Scandi Kitchen on 15th November to sign books and have a chit chat if you fancy popping along.  We'll put the glogg on.

Christmas_scandi_dinner

October 19, 2012

NEW Simply Add Fish Range from Abbas in store

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We Scandinavians love fish.  As in LOVE fish.  The people at ABBA (not the band, no, the seafood company, ed.) have developed these really lovely pour-over-sauces - just pour the sauce over fresh fillets of fish of your choice, pop it in the oven for 20 minutes and voila, it is done.

Excellent product - and super easy to use.  We've got Lemon Bake, Tomato or Creamy Herb bake.  All are additive free, making them ideal for the children's tea time.

Now available in our shop now on Great Titchfield Street priced £1.95 a pack.  

Bye for now

The Kitchen People 

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We finally found our TEA

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Being coffee obsessive, tea in the past has taken a bit of a back step. Well, it's true. Time for a change.

Our Bronte has spent the past many months drinking lots of different teas and trying things out that may or may not fit in our little cafe.  She is now, firmly, a tea addict and has to divide her time equally between being addicted to coffee and tea.  Ah well.  

We finally we all settled on the teas from Chash Teas - we really really love their little tea temples and their flavours are divine. Excellent teas - above all - and fuss free flavours and subtle blends with big qualities.

From today, we have a new tea menu at Scandi Kitchen - do give one of these a go next time you pass by. And do let us know what you think.

Bye for now

The Kitchen People x

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September 14, 2012

What’s “Scandinavian Pastry” with Quark?

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What’s “Scandinavian Pastry” with Quark?

Ah, The Great British Bake-off.  We love that show.  Last week, one of the contestants made Wellington using what he described as “Scandinavian Pastry” because it was made with butter and Quark.  Since then, we've had quite a number of questions relating to Quark.

While the jury is out – in our humble Nordic opinion – about how Scandinavian this particular pastry is, it is very true that we use a lot of Quark in our cooking.

What is Quark?

It’s a cheese, technically.  It is also known as Curd Cheese.  The Swedes sell it under the brand name of “Kesella” (but this is a brand only – it is simply Quark).  The French tend to call is Fromage Frais.  Yes, we know:  Fromage frais is sold as a yoghurt here with cream added so it is no longer low fat, so it is slightly confusing.  Want to be even more confused?  It’s technically the same as Skyr too, that Icelandic yoghurt that everybody who’s ever been to Iceland can’t get out of their head and pre-order from us by the case load whenever we can get hold of it (the UK version tastes different mainly because of the food the cows eat).    Quark is extremely popular in Eastern European cooking as well as Russian cooking.

Confused yet?  So are we.  Let’s say it is a dairy product that is high in protein and naturally low in fat – but super creamy and extremely filling.  It has slightly sour notes but works extremely well with fruit – and also in cooking.

Here are five different ways you can use Quark in your food – a natural way to keep things low fat. 

  1.  Makes a really good dressing for salads – keeping them creamy whilst still being naturally low fat.  Mix the Quark with spices and herbs to use as dips for crudités.
  2. Quark is great for cheesecake.  Replace part of the full fat cream cheese in the American cheesecakes with quark to lighten the calories.
  3. Mix Quark and crème fraiche and the seeds from half a vanilla pod and a bit of lemon zest.  Use as topping for fresh fruit salad.
  4. Use Quark to thicken up sauces – just add to sauces and casseroles instead of crème fraiche or cream.
  5. Use Quark in baking – for example, when baking buns or Saffran Lucia buns (lussebullar).  You can replace some of the liquid with equal quantities of Quark. 

All major UK supermarkets stock quark – as do most Eastern European stores. 

At Scandi Kitchen, we stock Icelandic style SKYR– but pre-orders only.  Mail shop@scandikitchen.co.uk if you want to go on the Skyr Mailing List to be notified of when we get stock in.

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September 03, 2012

Christmas in August

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We went to see our friend Marie Louise Avery last month to take pictures for the upcoming Christmas Season.

This meant that we got to play around with mulled wine, ginger biscuits and Jansson's Temptation in the summer.  A first for us.  

We think we got some mightly good shots that day - but judge for yourself.  

Eh... Happy Christmas?

PhotoshootThe master at work

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July 06, 2012

Regular Swedish Mealtime (in Swenglish): Sticky Chocolate Cake

These three Swedish chaps are very popular in Sweden with their crazy cooking videos.  We like the main guy because he reminds us a bit of Sebastian when he's feeling stressed because someone's eaten his last bag of Cheez Doodles.

This time, the guys are making Swedish Sticky chocolate cake.  Or Kladdkaka, as it is known.

If you want to make a really nice version of kladdkaka Swedish sticky brownie, we do recommend you use our recipe instead.  Its really nice.

June 18, 2012

Picnic Box for 4 people £45 - order yours now for Midsummer 23rd June

Swedish Midsummer picnic boxes (£45 for four people) now available to book for pick-up on Saturday 23rd June from the cafe.

Limited supply, so book early (last booking is Friday midday).

Don't forget: we stock everything else you might need as well, from aquavit to Scandinavian treats... and on the day, we'll have a special deli-corner where you can buy extra salads, breads, skagenrora and much more to bring to your picnic.

CLICK HERE TO ORDER

Midsummer

 

May 03, 2012

17 Mai 2012 - Norwegian National Day London

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Think St Patrick’s Day is cool?  Then you’ll also enjoy Norwegian National Day, except everything is blue, red and white instead.  Oh, and less Guinness.  Possibly a bit more aquavit instead.  And waffles.

Norwegian constitution day is celebrated on 17th May every year and Norwegians across the world come out of the wood work, adorn their national costumes and get together to celebrate.

In London, these celebrations take place all over – but start in Southwark Park at 9:00 with the hoisting of the Norwegian flag.  There’s dancing, there’s music, there’s hotdogs and there are sure to be an abundance of waffles with or without brown cheese.

You can find the whole programme for 17th May (17. Mai i London 2012) right here

At our Great Titchfield Store we’ll be celebrating Norway too – with flags, cakes and tasters – so pop on down to see us.

We’re expecting our full Norway National Day delivery on 10th May so that is when you need to get ordering via our online shop www.scandikitchen.co.uk/shop to ensure your stash in time for the celebrations.

Norway1

April 30, 2012

FRIA Gluten Free bread wins Best BREAD category

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We love Fria.  They make amazing bread.  That it is gluen free (and mostly dairy free) is a bonus.

A few weeks back FRIA won the category for Best Bread at the Free From awards.  This is a big deal.

If you are gluten intolerent and you want to eat bread that taste like real bread but contains no gluten, then get yourself down to our shop and pick up some Fria.  

You will find it in the Freezer section.  Along with Fria chocolate cake, Fria cinnamon buns and muffins.  Yes, all gluten free.

The product that won the awards is the Fria Wholemeal loaf - it is gluten free, dairy free, nut free and egg free.  And it tastes amazing.

Fria

 

 

March 13, 2012

How do you know it is Easter in Sweden? Påskmust arrives...

Paskmust1At Christmas time in Sweden, Coca Cola is outsold massively by a drink called Julmust - a very sweet, lightly carbonated malted soft drink.  

Seeing as it is usually only available at Christmas, the Swedes had to do something to feed people's cravings, so they launched an Easter version too.  It's called Påskmust.  

See what they did there?  Julmust is Christmas because Jul means Christmas.  Påskmust - because påsk means Easter.  Clever stuff.

We've now got the large bottles of påskmust in stock on the webshop and we'll have it in store as well.

We've only got a limited supply, so we do suggest you get your stash reserved as soon as possible if you want to be really Swedish this Påsk.  

Click here to be teleported to the magic online shop where you can get buy your paskmust.  It's a must.

See what we did there?  Must.  Påskmust.  Clever.  Eh, sort of.

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Here's a picture of the angriest chick we could find.  Grrrr...

March 08, 2012

Waffle on and on and on - for Waffle Day 2012

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We Scandinavians can lay claim to having invented many things.  From the zipper to the paper clip, we have had our fair share of useful inventions over the past many years.  Long boats, Clapping hats and ABBA too, those we can claim as our own.  Still, there is one thing very dear to all Scandinavian people’s hearts that we have to credit the Belgians for:  the invention of the humble waffle.

In short, a waffle is just a batter that is baked in a waffle iron and eaten, just as it is, or topped with various delights.  The waffle actually stems from way back in the middle ages, where it was a batter that was baked between two plates of metal, over a hot stove and flipped over to cook evenly – and the batter was made from barley and oats, as opposed to today’s leavened waffles made from wheat flour.  Way back in England in the 14th century Middle Ages, the waffles were sold on the streets by vendors known as waferers.

Despite all this, waffles are immensely popular in Scandinavia – and have been for centuries.  Nope, not the potato kind of waffles so popular across the Atlantic and not the thick heavy waffles so popular in the low lands of Northern Europe (Belgium, Germany and Holland), but a humble heart-shaped waffles: not too sweet but very light and crisp.  The Scandinavian waffle, although not originating from there, is still very traditional and our version is usually only made on our shores.  We made it our own.

International waffle day (Våffeldag) is on 25th March every year.  Especially celebrated in Sweden, (where this day of waffle wonder originated), the day has religious connotations as it coincides with the Feast of the Annunciation, signalling the beginning of spring and lighter days.  On this day, people all over Sweden tuck into waffles with jam and whipped cream.

Still, nowhere are waffles as popular as in Norway where they are enjoyed all year round.  Every house has at least one waffle iron and a family recipe - and it is the perfect quick-snack to whip up when the family comes to visit.  In Norway, waffles are served one of two ways: sour cream and jam – or, more popular, with brown cheese.

Cheese with waffles, you say?  Really?  And goat’s cheese at that?  Yeps.  It is about as Norwegian as you can possibly get without standing on a soapbox singing “Take on Me”.

This recipe is by Farmor Eva from Sweden.  We sneakily took a copy of her handwritten cookbook after tasting these.

If you don’t have a heart-waffle iron, you can buy them online at Amazon or similar places.   We’ve even seen them at Robert Dyas.

Farmor Eva Aurell’s Waffles

This is a good basic recipe for waffles.  There are thousands of different versions for waffles – this is a good version from which to add your own personal preferences, such as different spices and maybe even soured cream to the mix.

Note:  you need a heart shaped waffle iron for these waffles.  If making them in a different waffle iron, you may need to increase the dough quantity as Belgian waffles are thicker than Scandinavian waffles.

250 ml water

250 ml whole milk

320g plain flour

2 tsp baking powder

150 ml melted margarine or butter

Mix a bit of liquid with the flour and baking powder to form a paste (to avoid lumps), then whisk in the rest of the flour and liquid.  Add the melted butter.  Leave to stand while you heat up the waffle iron.

Add enough batter to the waffle iron to cover the heart shaped surface, close the lid and cook until golden brown.  Repeat over until all batter is used.

Waffles are best eaten as they are cooked or they go soggy.  Enjoy with whipped cream and jam or with slices of Norwegian brown cheese.

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March 05, 2012

Swedish Cinnamon Buns (like Mamma makes them) - a recipe

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Swedish Cinnamon Buns

Makes around 40 buns.  

There are as many recipes for cinnamon buns in Sweden as there are people who bake them.  We like this recipe:  it is simple and straight forward.  It works.  

Over time you will develop your own version of this one.  We all have our little tweaks.  Bronte likes to add a pinch of vanilla to the cinnamon mixture - and sometimes she makes the buns with spelt flour instead of plain flour; sometimes she even adds seeds and nuts to fool herself it is better for you to eat.  Each develop their own little way over time.  

The result is the same, though: once you have made your own 'kanelbullar', you will never buy a pastry version again or one of those bad imitations from a cornershop.  

On top of all that, they make your house smell amazing. 

Its a big ol' recipe.  You can eat half, freeze half or give some away - if you have any left. Which you won't have because you'll feel obliged to eat them all they are SO GOOD.  Don't say we didn't warn you.

For best result, don’t be stingy with the filling and don’t try to use low fat anything: whole milk, good quality butter... We also prefer using fresh yeast, but if you can’t get hold of any, you can use dried (see footnote). If you are new to cinnamon buns, don’t worry: there is a lot of cinnamon in these – and ground cardamom. You can hold back a bit if you are not sure you’ll like it as strong as we do – but remember:  they’re called Cinnamon Buns for a reason.

The dough

50 g fresh yeast

1000 g plain bread flour (we like Swedish Vetemjol) - note this is approx, you may need less or a bit more, depending on the gluten content on your flour.

85 g caster sugar 

150 g unsalted butter

500 ml whole milk

½ tsp salt

2 tsp ground cardamom 

Filling

150g butter (soft and spreadable)
4-5 tsp ground cinnamon
120 g sugar 

Decoration
1 egg for brushing
Around 100 g of pearl sugar for decoration (If you can’t get it, omit - or used a teaspoon of finely chopped nuts)

This is how you do it

Melt the butter and add the liquid (milk) – check the temperature (should be between 37-46 degree Celsius for optimal yeast).  Add the yeast and stir.

Once the yeast has dissolved, add the sugar, salt, cardamom and enough flour to make the dough combine (probably 700-800g) (hold a bit the rest for kneading). Work the dough until it almost stops sticking and has a shiny surface – probably around 10 minutes by electric mixer, longer by hand. Keep kneading, it makes for a better bun.  Hold on the flour - you can always add more later and if you add too much, your buns will be dry.  The dough should only just reach the point of not being sticky.

Please the dough in a nice warm cozy place for around 30 minutes or until doubled in size. Place the dough on a floured surface and work through with a bit more flour until the dough stops sticking and can be formed.

Cut the dough in half and roll out each piece in a rectangular shape, around 30 cm long and 20 cm wide. Butter the whole piece liberally and dust over with the cinnamon and sugar. Roll each piece lengthways so that you end up with a long sausage looking roll. Cut 2 cm big bites and place them carefully on baking trays (take care to keep them separated as they will rise). For ease, you can add large muffin cases if you wish, but this is not essential. Let the buns rest for another 30 minutes until doubled in size.  You should get between 34-40 buns out of this batch.   TIP:  we like buns that have thin layers between the cinnamon - roll the dough out quite thinly and you will get a really neat roll of perfectly layered buns.

Brush gently with egg and pour over a bit of pearl sugar on each bun and then bake in the over on 220 degrees celcius (fan oven) for about 8-10 minutes (turn the heat down a bit half way if you feel they are getting too brown). Let them cool down under a clean tea towel – this will stop them going dry too quickly.

Footnote: Fresh yeast is available at Scandi Kitchen, in some health food stores and some supermarkets. You can also befriend a real baker if you can find one.  Alternative, replace fresh yeast with dry yeast – and add this to the flour/dry ingredients and NOT to the wet mix.  Follow instructions on dry yeast packet for equivalent to 50g fresh yeast.

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March 01, 2012

What's for tea, Mum? Recipe for Korv Stroganoff

Every cuisine has dishes in it that you will never find in a restuarant because they are too simple, too plain and much more for quick-dinners at home.  In Sweden, one such dish is Korv Stroganoff - and in Denmark a similar dish is called Swedish Sausage Dish (Svensk Polseret).

Here's our recipe if you fancy making it.

For the Swedish version, you 'll need to get your hand on one of these sausages  

And if you're making the Danish version, a packet of sausages similar to these will do (any Wiener style sausages will be fine).

Download 1203 Korv Stroganof

Happy Cooking

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