Sunday, April 19, 2015

Fresh lemon dessert - Frisk citrondessert

Frisk citrondessert

This dessert is excellent after a rich main course. Since I love anything lemony, this is a favourite (I realize I have an awful lot of favourites, but hey, I’ll soon be 51 so I’ve been around for a while …)!

4 servings

1 lemon
3 eggs
1 ¼ dl (125 ml) sugar
25 g butter or margarine

Wash the lemon and grate the zest. Make sure nothing white sneaks into the zest. Cut the lemon in wedges, remove the membranes and cut the pulp in pieces. Beat eggs and sugar until fluffy. Melt the fat and mix it into the egg batter, then add lemon juice and zest.

Pour the batter into 4 greased, oven-proof serving dishes and bake in a waterbath in the oven at 175C for about 35 minutes or until the batter has set. Allow to cool. Serve preferably lukewarm or chilled with a dab of whipped cream and sliced strawberries.





Strawberry Apple Pie - Jordgubbs- och äppelpaj

Jordgubbs- och äppelpaj

An irresistible pie, filled with strawberries and apples. Serve with cream or ice cream – or vanilla sauce (custard)! :-D

1 pie = 6 – 8 pieces

3 dl (1 ¼ cup, 300 ml) flour
125 to 150 g butter or margarine
2 to 3 tablespoons water

approx 5 dl (2 cups) fresh or frozen strawberries
2 to 3 apples
1 dl (1/3 cup, 300 ml) sugar
½ dl (1/4 cup, 50 ml) brown sugar
2 tablespoons potato starch

1 egg yolk

Put the flour in a bowl. Cut the fat in small pieces and divide it in the flour until crumbly. Add water and quickly work to a dough. Leave in the fridge for 1 hour.

Slice the strawberries. Peel and core the apples and cut them in pieces. Mix sugar, brown sugar and potato starch flour and mix with strawberries and apples.

Roll out about 2/3 of the dough to a circle and place in a pie pan, diameter approx 10 inches, in an even layer. Roll out remaining dough to a round lid, as big as the pan. Make a few incisions in the lid to let the steam out. Fill the pie shell and cover with the lid – pinch it together around the edges – and brush with egg yolk.

Bake in the middle of the oven at 200C for about 45 minutes or until the lid is nicely coloured and the apples are tender.

If you wish, sift some powdered sugar over the surface.




Mashed Swedish turnips - Rotmos


This is another favourite of ours – mashed turnips served with boiled or lightly smoked meat or sausage. Mustard is an absolute necessity with this, and we’re having it for dinner today. We mostly use a pork knuckle, lightly salted, which we boil for 1½ to 2 hours depending on size, together with an onion in halves, some bay leaves, a carrot in pieces and some whole allspice berries and white peppercorns. Often we also serve a special kind of sausage made of ground pork (fairly coarsely ground) and with mild spices and some onion in it.

But the mashed turnips is almost the best, and here comes the recipe.

4 servings

1 – 2 Swedish turnips, approx 1 kg/2 lbs in all
2 carrots
6 potatoes
water, salt
1 to 2 tablespoons butter or margarine
salt, pepper

Peel the turnips, carrots and potatoes. Cut in cubes or pieces. Place the turnips and the carrots in a saucepan and cover with lightly salted water. Some choose not to have carrots in their mash, but they give a lovely taste plus add a vivid color to it. Boil for 30 minutes or until very tender. Boil the potatoes in another saucepan.

Pour off the water from the turnips and carrots and mash them in their saucepan. Then pour off the water from the potatoes and mash them. After this, you mix the turnips and potatoes and stir together until well blended. Add some butter or margarine plus warm milk for the right consistency. Flavour with salt and pepper to taste.

Then the lovely mash is ready to serve with the already boiled, warm meat.




Raspberry Chocolate Cake - Hallonchokladtårta


Chocolate and raspberries go so well together. You can prepare the chocolate glazing and the layers the day before and glue the layers together with the raspberries in between, which will make the cake extra juicy. Glaze and decorate the cake shortly before serving.

Makes 1 cake

Sticky cake layers:
200 g (7 oz) butter or margarine
4 eggs
4 dl (1 ¾ cups) sugar
5 dl (2 cups) flour
1 ¼ dl (½ cup) cocoa
1 tablespoon vanilla sugar
dash salt

butter or margarine for the baking pans

200 to 250 g (7 to 8 oz) raspberries,
fresh or frozen and thawed

250 g (8 oz) dark chocolate
2½ dl (1 cup, 8 fl oz) whipping cream
1 tablespoon honey
25 g (1 ¾ oz) butter or margarine

fresh raspberries for decoration, if  desired

Attach a baking paper to the bottom of 2 springform pans, diameter approx 22 cm/9 inches. Grease the sides of the pans. If you don’t have two pans of the same size, you can of course bake the cakes one by one …

Melt the fat. Beat eggs and sugar lightly and stir the fat into the mixture. Mix flour, cocoa, vanilla sugar and salt and stir this into the egg batter. Divide the batter evenly in the two pans and spread it out. Bake in the lower part of the oven at 200C/Gas 6 for 10 to 15 minutes – the cakes should still be “rocky”. Allow to cool, then loosen from the pan but still on the bottom plates.

Sprinkle the raspberries on top of one of the cakes and put the other one on top. Now you can leave it to the next day!

Chop the chocolate for the glazing rather finely. Bring cream and honey to a boil, remove from heat and quickly stir the chopped chocolate into the hot cream. Stir until all chocolate has melted. Add the fat in small dabs and stir it all together to a smooth batter. Let the glazing set in room temperature until the day after. Store in the fridge if you are in a hurry, but check closely so that it doesn’t get too cold and too hard.

Spread the glazing on top and on the sides of the cake and decorate with fresh raspberries if you wish.




Friday, April 17, 2015

Strawberry fruit pudding - Jordgubbskräm


Choose juicy, well-ripened berries for this dessert. I’ve been told that potato starch flour isn’t common in the UK, but apparently it’s available on Amazon and can also be substituted with cornstarch/cornflour, tapioca or arrowroot.

4 servings

5 to 7 dl (2 to 3 cups) fresh strawberries
5 dl (2 cups, 500 ml) water
¾ to 1 dl (1/4 to 1/3 cup, 75 to 100 ml) sugar
2½ tablespoons potato starch flour (see, there it is again!)

Trim and rinse the berries and cut in slices or halves if they’re large. Mix berries, water, sugar and whatever thickening you choose or can get hold of in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring gently but carefully.

Immediately pour into a serving bowl. Sprinkle the surface with sugar to avoid “skin” from appearing (comes from the starch). Allow to cool.

Instead of strawberries you can use other juicy berries such as raspberries, blueberries, redcurrants e t c. One really lovely variety is to use rhubarbs with either raspberries or strawberries.

Serve this dessert cooled or chilled with creamy milk. A childhood favourite that has stayed with me over the years. In Swedish we call this pudding “kräm”, because it’s not really as thick as a pudding (or shouldn’t be).



Apricot cake with lemon sauce - Aprikoskaka med citronsås

Aprikoskaka med citronsås

A juicy apricot cake, served with lemon sauce, is good for dessert or with tea or coffee. You bake it in a roasting pan, size approx 14 x 10 inches. It’s easy to make (if you don’t have to run around looking for a roasting pan of the right size – in Sweden there seems to be 3 million sizes of roasting pans according to the recipes which makes me slightly mad). But the cake is delicious!

Makes 1 cake in a roasting pan as above

200 g butter or margarine
2½ dl (1 cup, 200 ml) sugar
3 eggs
1 dl (1/3 cup, 100 ml) apricot purée from mashed apricots
(you can also use canned purée – in Sweden we use those
cans for small children with fruit desserts)
3 dl (1 ¼ cup, 300 ml) flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 dl (1/3 cup, 100 ml) potato starch flour
grated zest of 1 lemon

sliced apricots or apricot halves
apricot liquid from the can (optional)

Lemon sauce:
1 egg
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
1 tablespoon potato starch flour
3 dl (1 ¼ cup, 300 ml) “coffee cream”
(this is a thin cream with 12% fat)


2 dl (3/4 cup, 200 ml) crème fraîche
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
1 tablespoon sugar if needed

Stir the fat until soft, add sugar and stir until light and fluffy. Stir in the eggs and add apricot purée. Mix flour, baking powder and potato starch flour, stir it into the egg batter and add lemon zest. Spread out the batter in a greased, floured roasting pan (or use baking paper). Bake at 175C/Gas 4 for approx 30 minutes or until puffed up, nicely colored and done. Try with a stick. Leave in the pan for a while, then unmould and leave to cool under the pan.

Make the sauce. Mix eggs, sugar, lemon juice and zest, potato starch flour and cream in a saucepan. Let simmer while beating – it must not boil. Do not use a steel beater. Pour the sauce in something else and beat until cold.

Or choose the other sauce. Mix crème fraîche with lemon juice and zest and optional sugar.

Decorate the cake with apricots to your liking. Spoon some apricot liquid over it if you wish, then cut the cake in pieces and serve with the sauce.




Seafarer's beef - Sjömansbiff


 Meat, sauce and potatoes in the same pot make this an ideal meal at sea. It’s a dish that has become a Swedish classic. I love it, even though we’ve never had a boat.

4 servings

500 g (1 lb) ½ inch thick slices of boneless beef
3 onions
2 tablespoons butter, margarine or oil
2 dl (3/4 cup, 200 ml) water
12 potatoes
2 teaspoons salt
¼ teaspoon white pepper
33 cl (8 oz) dark beer or bouillon

Slice the meat in smaller pieces, if necessary. Peel and slice the onion. Sauté in some of the fat over medium heat in a frying pan until nicely colored. Remove and set aside. Brown the meat in the remaining fat and remove from the pan. Pour off the fat and stir a little hot water into the frying pan to get a nice pan juice. Reserve.

 Peel and slice the potatoes. Place potatoes, onions and meat in a baking dish or casserole in alternate layers. Make sure both bottom and top layers consist of potatoes. Flavour each layer with salt and pepper.

 Pour pan juice and beer or bouillon over the layers, cover and let simmer over low heat for 45 minutes or in a 200C oven. Sprinkle with chopped parsley before serving. Serve with a green salad and pickled gherkins or beets.



Monday, April 06, 2015

Mazarins - Mazariner


Makes 18 mazarins

You need a basic pastry dough to work with, so let’s start with that.

100 g (4 oz) butter or margarine
¾ dl (1/3 cup, 75 ml) sugar
1 egg yolk
2½ dl (1 1/3 cups) sifted flour

Cream the butter and sugar. Stir in the egg yolk, add flour and work the dough by hand until smooth and well blended.

Pastry shells:
Basic pastry dough as above

100 g (4 oz) butter or margarine
½ dl (1/4 cup) sugar
225 g (8 oz) almond paste
3 eggs
½ dl (1/4 cup) sifted flour

 Frosting (but I would rather call it glazing!):
2 dl (1 cup) powdered sugar
approx 2 tablespoons water

Preheat oven to 175C/Gas 4. Prepare the pastry dough as above and shape into a long log, which you cut in 18 pieces. Press each piece into a buttered muffin tin to coat bottom and sides.

To make the filling, beat together butter, sugar and almond paste until creamy and lump-free. Then add the eggs while beating, one at a time. Stir in the flour and blend well. Spoon the filling into the lined muffin tins and bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden. Leave to cool for 5 minutes, then gently unfold. (That’s the hardest part in my opinion, I’ve invented many new “bad words” during this critical moment.)

Stir the powdered sugar for the glazing with water to make a thin glaze; spread on top of the pastries while still slightly warm. Or simply sift with powdered sugar (but that’s a no-no for me, I want the glazing!). Serve the mazarins warm or at room temperature.