Stockholm: Matbaren by Mathias Dahlgren

fullsizeoutput_6952

Evening in Stockholm

In the winter, the days are short in Stockholm. I absolutely love it. The city lights up with a warm glow and you can’t help but feel cozy. After visiting the Vasa Museum, we headed to the Grand Hotel to eat at Matbaren by the chef Mathias Dahlgren. Matbaren was recommened by a Swedish colleague of mine. She told me it’s her favorite restaurant, so of course we had to try it!

Continue reading

Stockholm: Fika

fullsizeoutput_698a

Fika at Drop Coffee

I don’t think I can describe fika better than the official Swedish website:

“Swedes prefer not to translate the word fika. They don’t want it to lose significance and become a mere coffee break. It is one of the first words you will learn when visiting Sweden, right after tack (thank you) and hej (hello).

Fika is much more than having a coffee. It is a social phenomenon, a legitimate reason to set aside a moment for quality time. Fika can happen at any time, morning as well as evening. It can be savoured at home, at work or in a café. It can be with colleagues, family, friends, or someone you are trying to get to know. It is a tradition observed frequently, preferably several times a day.

Accompanying sweets are crucial. Cinnamon buns, cakes, cookies, even open-faced sandwiches pass as acceptable fika fare. It comes as no surprise that Swedes are among the top consumers of coffee and sweets in the world – or that Swedes appreciate the good things in life.”

Continue reading

London Day 1

fullsizeoutput_63eb

Arriving in London, first stop: Granary Square in King’s Cross

For Christmas, we gave Dook and Els a 3 day trip to London in February. I really love London and have been lucky enough to go quite often over the years, so I volunteered to create the itinerary. Not everyone had been in London before, so I created a 3 day introduction to London planning!

Continue reading

Koen’s Chili Cookoff 2.0

DSC00403

For Koen’s birthday we held a second edition of the Chili Cookoff! In 2016 Koen placed in 2nd, so now after two years he was ready to compete again!

The rules: everyone invited brings a chili to be evaluated with the winners announced at the end of the evening. The prizes: 3 hot sauces. The world’s hottest chili for the winner, 2nd hottest chili for the 2nd place, and 3rd hottest chili for 3rd place.

Continue reading

Pkhali

fullsizeoutput_7495

3 types of pkhali with Koen’s sour dough bread

One of the best things about traveling is bringing inspiration back home. Our first day in Moscow we visited a Georgian (the country!) restaurant and we fell in love with the cuisine. During the week we try to eat vegetarian, so why not try making pkhali ourselves?

Continue reading

Raviolo all’uova

fullsizeoutput_7352

Raviolo all’uova is “a single raviolo with a ricotta and spinach nest and a raw egg yolk that when boiled and lightly fried in butter cooks gently but remains tender and gooey, adding a luscious creamy texture that balances the freshness of the cheesy next and earthiness of the brown butter sauce” (as excellently described here).

Koen and I saw this dish for the first time on an episode of Mind of a Chef featuring Gabrielle Hamilton. We knew immediately this was a dish we had to make! So, so, so delicious!

Continue reading

Geneva, Switzerland

fullsizeoutput_71c4

Jet d’Eau

Geneva is so beautiful in the sunshine! I was only here for one day, but I tried to fit in as much as possible – visiting Lake Geneva & the Vieille Ville (Old Town), all the while trying to eat as much cheese as possible!

Continue reading

Beijing: Exploring the Hutongs and Hua’s Restaurant

fullsizeoutput_616f

Exploring the hutongs

After visiting the Summer Palace, we headed back to the hutongs in search of lunch. We figured we’d wonder around and try to find somewhere that looks good. Along the way we sampled some Old Beijing Yoghurt and shaobing filled with red bean paste before stumbling upon Hua’s Restaurant. This had to be fate. I had researched best traditional Beijing restaurants and had really wanted to visit Hua’s but there wasn’t any time. But then we discovered it by accident! We had a HUGE feast, trying as much traditional food as possible! Hua’s is quite famous because they serve imperial-style food, using recipes from “Notes of Imperial Court Food” written during the reign of Emperor Yongzheng of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911).

Continue reading

London: Food Edition

IMG-20170815-WA0008

Koen and me with the London Eye

Often for work I need to go to London and I always look forward to choosing where to eat in the evening. This time I was in the city for a week, so there were many opportunities to explore the culinary scene. Because my hotel was in Mayfair, all of the restaurants we visited are in the City of Westminster (click if you want to read an earlier post about the borough). To make it easy, I’ve divided the restaurants into 4 categories: British, Indian, Pubs and Street Food!

Continue reading