Swedish mulled wine
Now is the perfect time to make some glögg (Swedish mulled wine) for Advent. Ideally glögg should be made at least a week in advance, although a few hours will do if you've forgotten to make any! Essentially vodka is flavoured with some spices and then it is heated up with red wine and sugar. Easy peasy!
Spices were originally added to imported wine in Sweden to mask the taste as it was of rather dubious quality. The quality of the wine is no longer an issue, but glögg has now become an established and much loved drink; especially during Advent. More…
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All our recipes have been tried and tasted, include a clear summary, list ingredients in British and American units and include a photograph of the finished dish.
Happy cooking! John Duxbury
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Lucia saffron buns
Lussekatter (Lucia saffron buns) are enjoyed in Sweden during the lead up to Christmas. Although lussekatter have a reputation for being a little dry, we think our recipes produce lovely buns! We actually have a choice of three recipes: using a stand-mixer, by hand and a lower fat version.
Whichever recipe you choose, I recommend baking some for breakfast each Sunday in Advent to enjoy as you light a new Advent candle, a popular tradition in Sweden. More…
Chokladtryfflar (chocolate truffles) are a true classic for Christmas in Sweden, although they are just as good at other festive occasions! They are super good as a small luxurious dessert and few people can resist having one with coffee!
Our chokladtryfflar recipe produces two sorts of truffles, without creating much more work. The mixture for the filling is divided into two, so that half of the truffles above have a dark chocolate filling with a milk chocolate coating. The other half have a filling of dark chocolate with ginger and orange, which is then coated with milk chocolate and rolled in cocoa powder. Of course, if you prefer you can make just one type or you could substitute another filling in place of the ginger and orange!
The truffles freeze well so I recommend making a large batch, so that you can always defrost a few when needed. More…
Pepparkakor (gingersnaps) are a traditional treat during Advent in Sweden. It is true that they are eaten throughout the year, but they are especially popular before Christmas when they are cut into the shape of gingerbread men, bears, elk, hearts and stars. They are often decorated with icing (frosting) and hung as decorations.
Swedish ginger biscuits are a little more spiced and much "snappier" than British gingerbread men! Ideally the mixture should be rested for a week before rolling out and baking, so make these as soon as you can if you want to enjoy them during Advent. More…
Swedish apple cake
Äppelkaka is one of the most popular of all dishes in Sweden. It is served all year round, but it is at its best when made in late summer and in the autumn with freshly picked apples.
It is a kaka (cake), but it is not as sweet as most cakes and so many people think of it as a dessert. It is normally served with vaniljsås (vanilla sauce), but it can also be served with lightly whipped cream or ice cream. It is a popular fika choice, but it can also be served as a dessert at the end of a meal.
There are countless recipes for äppelkaka. This version uses 4 or 5 grated apples to give it a lovely appley taste. No wonder it is one of the most popular recipes on this site. More…
Liquorice panna cotta
Pure liquorice is a sophisticated ingredient. It has an elegant, almost herbal, flavour with notes of anise and fennel, two much-loved flavours in Sweden. Lakritspannacotta (liquorice panna cotta) therefore makes an interesting end to a Swedish meal, without being over-facing. More…
Sambucus is the Latin name for plants belonging to the elderflower family. A popular thing to do in the Advent is to spice some fläderbomssaft (elderflower cordial/syrup) and serve it hot, as a less boozy alternative to glögg (Swedish mulled wine). More…
Christmas markets in Stockholm
Julmarknader i Stockholm
There are three lovely Christmas markets in Stockholm, so Advent is an excellent time to visit, especially if you are lucky enough to be there when the city is covered with a blanket of snow. Take a look at our short guide! More…
Thin rye crispbreads
Tunt knäckebröd (thin crispbreads) are absolutely delicious. I like to flavour them with anise seeds, for a lovely intense liquorice-like aroma, but you can use fennel or caraway seeds if you prefer. The breads are much thinner than you can normally buy in shops and incredibly moreish, so be warned: they disappear in double quick time! Serve them with cheese or as aperitif with drinks. More…
Pears in red wine
Päron i röttvin
Päron med röttvin (pears in red wine) is a nice easy dish to make, needs little attention and it can be prepared hours in advance. It is a fairly international dish, but Swedes probably use more spices to flavour the pears, in this case cinnamon and vanilla. More…
Advent in Sweden
Advent i Sverige
Swedes love festivals, decorating their houses, eating special foods and the associated rituals. Not only do they love festivals, they are very good at organising them. Naturally then Swedes love Advent. It is a time when they bask in the warm glow of candles and Advent stars so that everything starts to look Christmassy. Checkout our short guide to Advent in Sweden by clicking here.
To help celebrate Advent Swedish style, I recommend downloading Swedish Christmas, an app available for android and Apple devices. Just like a traditional Advent calendar it contains 24 windows, but behind each window is some lovely Swedish Christmas music and excellent video. More…
Nothing beats Lucia!
Ingenting slår Lucia!
For many Swedes midsummer is their favourite time, but for me it is Lucia. It is such a magical ceremony. Do try and get to see a Lucia concert if you can, although tickets are hard to come by as the best sell out months in advance.
In short, Lucia was an Italian saint with no connection with Sweden! And the ceremony commemorates the beginning of lighter days, but is held on the wrong day. The whole thing is a bit weird and makes Harry Potter seem like a scientific journal. More…
• Advent börjar: Sunday 29th November
• Nobeldagen: Thursday 10th December
• Luciadagen: Sunday 13th December
• Julafton: Thursday 24th December
• Juldagen: Friday 25th December
• Annandag jul: Saturday 26th December
• Nyårsafton: Thursday 31st December
If you you would like to see an abbreviated 2015 calendar, detailing all the röda dagar (public holidays) in Sweden click here.
Distinctive features of Swedish food
Swedish food has a growing reputation across the world. For instance, Jamie Oliver described Swedish food as "Big, bold, brave and definitely up there with the best in the world". But what makes Swedish food distinctive? Check-out our guide…
We have compiled a list of what we consider to be our Top 50 Classic Recipes. No two people are likely to agree completely on what should be included, but we hope you will approve of most of our choices!
I am are gradually producing a Swedishfoodpedia. Essentially this is a series of articles about food related events in Sweden and Swedish ingredients, especially those that might not be familiar to most readers. I have already assembled articles on many topics including:
• cloudberries (wonderful golden berries that grow in the north of Sweden),
• fika (a "proper" Swedish coffee break),
• lingon (lingonberries, an essential accompaniment to many Swedish dishes),
• surströmming (stinky fermented herring),
• Västerbottensost (the king of Swedish cheeses),
Many other articles are in the pipeline, but if there is anything you would like to know more about please let me know. To read existing articles click here.
For Sweden's news in English visit TheLocal.se. The site is updated 24/7 and has more than 4 million readers worldwide. If you hit the 'Register' button on their website they will send you a weekly newsletter summarising the week's Swedish news as well as links to various features. Take me to TheLocal.se.
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