This year we made a traditional Christmas dinner, with Beef Wellington as the star. This year Nikki wasn’t able to join us, which meant that for the first time we could have meat at dinner. Koen and I have a tradition of eating Beef Wellington every Christmas Eve and it seemed like a fun idea to make altogether at our place in Antwerp. For the starter Barbara made her famous pear and butternut squash soup with fried sage and bacon. Yum!
Marrying into a Dutch family means getting to celebrate Sinterklaas every December. I love how much effort goes into writing poems and creating surprises for everyone! This year we celebrated at Barbara’s place in Tilburg to exchange gifts and surprises.
Part of the fun of being in Stockholm is visiting all of the islands. For dinner we headed to the Gamla Stan, Old Town, for dinner at Pubologi. This is again a recommendation from a colleague who lives in Stockholm and she said the menu is always changing and super creative. We weren’t disappointed. I loved the seasonal ingredients and innovative combinations! I especially enjoyed dessert – I’d never eaten pine needles before!
Walking through Kungsträdgården, a park in the city center
Bakfickan is one of the restaurants located in Stockholm’s Opera House. Earlier this year we dined at the Michelin-starred Operakällaren, and were excited to go to the more casual Bakfickan for some typical Swedish dishes.
The space is very small – only 28 seats – and very cozy. I ordered my go-to dishes: Toast Skagen and Meatballs with all of the typical fixings (brown gravy, potato puree, lingon berries, and pickled cucumber slices). The meatballs were soooo delicious! Definitely the best I’ve had in Stockholm.
Babette was recommended to us by a colleague for dinner. She had me at cozy little winebar, but peaked my interest even more when she told me they have a small but interesting and constantly changing menu and great pizza!
I did a bit more research and read that this is a chef’s favorite – that in the weekend you may find some of Stockholm’s most famous chefs enjoying a glass of wine! Babette was opened by three sommeliers and one chef, so it makes sense that wine is at the forefront of the menu. From Stockholm Food Stories, “Notably, the restaurant opened up in an old pizza joint and they have kept the pizza oven as the main cooking item – which of course adds an extra layer of complexity for Olle T Celltom when cooking the food. The pizzas are tasty, made with really good produce and innovative thinking when it comes to how to combine the quite classic Italian toppings on the pizza, and especially it is impressive to be abele to produce the pizzas in a standard pizza oven. One would have guessed that they like so many places would have flown in a oven from Naples, but no. This is your oven from the pizzeria on the corner.” So of course we had to split a pizza!
If you’re walking around Stockholm you can’t help but notice all of the hot dog stands. So this trip we decided to do a hot dog tour. Luckily there are so many lists and the one I found must useful was the Culture Trip’s 10 Top Hot Dog Stands in Stockholm. I spent the morning plotting our route for the afternoon. What a great way to see the city – walking to each hot dog destination! One thing I didn’t anticipate – getting full after only two stands! So the rest of the route will have to be carried out next visit…
I love a good brunch. Normally when Koen and I travel, rather having to go out for two meals, we generally enjoy a nice big brunch around 11ish. We looked up places close to our AirBnB and found Greasy Spoon, the Odenplan location. I was so excited when I saw the specials for this week – Chicken and Waffles! So of course we had to go!
We were really curious to go out for tacos at La Neta. Antwerp doesn’t have a great selection of Mexican restaurants, so when we discovered a taquería with a high rating close by we wanted to try it out!
You’re unable to make a reservation, so expect to wait in line. Luckily it moves quickly so you don’t have to wait too long (plus it’s worth it!). We ordered a serving of chips and guacamole and two types of tacos: pastor (marinated pork with pineapple) and carnitas (pulled pork confit). Once you receive your food, there are many salsas to choose from along with chopped onion and cilantro. Yum!
A visit to Stockholm isn’t complete without having fika, or a coffee and sweets moment! This time we visited Vete-Katten, a Stockholm institution for coffee and princess cake. I tried princess cake for the first time in February and had to have it again this visit. Vete-Katen’s “royal cake is baked according to our own secret method, which gives it its unique taste and creaminess. The sponge bases are layered with freshly-prepared custard and raspberries, enveloped by a thick quilt of whipped cream, all encased in green marzipan powdered with icing sugar.” It was soooo delicious! The coffee is also excellent!
For our first meal in Stockholm, we headed to Meno Male (recommended by a Stockholm colleague) for a Neapolitan-style pizza. We were staying in Östermalm, the north-East neighborhood of Stockholm and were happy that it was a mere 5 minutes from our apartment!
They have a selection of pizzas to choose from or you can create your own. I have to say I’m not too daring when it comes to pizza, and ordered my favorite – spicy salami, mushrooms and red onions. I couldn’t wait to take my first bite when it came to us fresh from their giant pizza oven. Delicious!!