Sunday, December 26, 2010

Merry Christmas

Or Happy Holidays. Tips from NOMA (voted the top restaurant in the world): Eat your tree!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Odorless garlic

I would never have been brave enough to have tried it myself, but my friend had a similar juice blend back in Stockholm and let me try some.

Naked Juice's "Green Machine"'s ingredient list sounds more like a "kitchen sink" blend: apple, mango, pineapple, banana, kiwi, spirulina, barley grass, wheat grass, parsley, ginger, blue green algae (to be distinguished from yellow?), and ODORLESS GARLIC.

I don't know about you, but I feel like garlic's pungency is one of its superpowers. It's like cutting off Samson's hair, right? I suppose I'm happy not to have garlic breath first thing in the morning.

Bottom line. This juice is magical deliciousness.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Oishi Oiji Oi Sobaegi/Cucumber Kimchi

Cucumber Kimchi is my favorite.

David Chang does a fantastic quick version here!

We're eating it with some Chinese style dumplings tonight. Yumma.javascript:void(0)

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Monofloral wonder

After breakfasting extensively at the Chambres D'Hotes in France (a Chambres D'Hotes is a French equivalent of a B&B), I couldn't help but be won over by their simple hosting style for breakfast.

A bounty of delicious and often homemade jams (watermelon, apricot & almond, etc), yogurt, some bread and a mild cheese, and then some baked goods. All right, the low maintenance part is the first part of the description.

There would also always be some honey. Southern France is rather famous for its honey and why wouldn't it be. There's a heady perfume in the air during the summer.

I contemplated the honey shelf since the lavendar honey is the most famous from southern France, but since lavendar is such a strong flavor, I doubted I would use it so often, so I wound up purchasing orange blossom honey instead. The flavor is sweet and citrusy, golden.

I'm interested in trying other monoflorals! Apparently there is also wild raspberry and apple blossom. I can't wait to try them all. I wonder where the archipelago bees are living with their delectable honey (there are masses of plum, apple, wild raspberry canes, and honeysuckle flowers on the island).

In any event need to go find myself a good honey drizzler or spoon though!

Friday, August 20, 2010


Of spending 50 euros on juice as listed below I discovered something almost as good!

Raspberry drink by Bramhults!

Monday, August 02, 2010

It's True Blood!

Well, it's not true blood, it's actually raspberry nectar by Alain Milliat. It was one of the most superb juices/nectars I've ever tasted. Unfortunately, you have to order it from other countries if you want it in Sweden. It is available in the US, you might have to look around a bit. I'm keen on trying the other ones. The true question is, should I spend 50 euros finding out if the others are just as good?

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Wild jam making

The birds out here at the archipelago have discerning tastes. I went out to the wild cherry tree which has half sour/sweet cherries, but they were all gone. Not a one to be seen, and then I fought with some wild raspberry canes, and got a little more than a few handfuls of berries out of my venture. I picked some red currants for good measure, and took the last snippets of wild strawberries (they seemed more like they were dried wild strawberries at this point), and made a jam. At the last moment, I threw in my disappointing doughnut peach, and voila, jam!

When I told my boyfriend I couldn't find any cherries, he asked me if I checked the several wild cherry trees on the property. I hadn't, so I went out and tried a cherry on the tree near the house. And alas, it wasn't half as tasty as the other cherries.

But my jam is delicious. I could imagine adding more peaches to fill it out next time if my raspberry content is so low. I ate a whole pint of gorgeous plump ones at work today after lunch, so I'm not too sore there weren't so many to be had.

It didn't turn out to be so much jam, but it's amazing. There's no formal recipe on this one. I threw in four handfuls of wild raspberries, four wizened wild strawberries, and about ten red currants and one doughnut peach peeled. I boiled that sucker on the stove until the fruit released its juices and mashed it while it boiled. I added only a minimum of regular white sugar (I believe in the 65 fruit/35 sugar ratio and jams with very little pectin). Jams taste more vividly of fruit when the sugar added is lower. I sterilized the jam jar in boiling water, but I didn't sweat it because I'm eating this jam right away.

I also sieved the jam because nothing has more seeds than wild raspberries. They are almost essentially all seed! I foresee this as the beginning of many more jams to come!

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Two Little Red Hens went out one day

And made really delicious cupcakes.

I'm not into the cupcake craze as much as others. Admittedly other cupcakes have often been too sweet (for the most part), or too dry, or I was against their crumb (how you judge a cupcake and cakes in general).

But an impulse buy at Dean & Deluca has made me a believer. The Two Little Red Hens' cupcakes are exactly what I want. Not too sweet, amazing frosting, and the right balance of dense moisture.

The cupcakes are pricey, but they also come in miniature size for a great wallop of frosting. I've only tried the red velvet, but I'm certainly jonesing for more.

Two Little Red Hens
1652 2nd Ave
(between 85th St & 86th St)
New York, NY 10028
Neighborhoods: Upper East Side, Yorkville

Also found at some Dean and Deluca's in Manhattan (Soho and UES).

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Divine dandelion jelly

We've all seen their bright fuzzy faces, yellow against green lawns. We've probably seldom thought that they were useful for anything. But dandelions are one of the most underrated wild foods.

Now that I've followed the Urban Forager's recipe for Dandelion Jelly, I'm viewing dandelions in a whole new light. The jelly tastes like a wildflower bouquet of honey. In a word, yumma.

Maybe I'll have to take a stab at violet jelly this spring at the country house.

I also highly recommend if you try to pick 200 heads of big dandelions that you employ small children who don't have to stoop so far to the ground. It is, as the Urban Forager says, very slow food, but I find jam/jelly making a bit of a meditative process, like when my mother used to make me tie reconstituted lily buds for a special birthday soup.

You can also eat the dandelion greens! I haven't tried it, but I'm intrigued ...

Monday, April 12, 2010

Laduree V. Pierre Herme

It's official, folks. Herme wins by a landslide! One of the crazy things about London is that London has everything. I was walking around Selfridge's on my last day and lo, and behold, a mesmerizing display of all things delicious stood in front of me: the Pierre Herme counter filled with brightly colored macarons and chocolates.

I've made my way through Jasmin (jasmine tea flavored), apricot saffron, apricot pistachio, and chocolate passionfruit, and am waiting with bated breath to eat the last one -- salt caramel. The filling was generous, the macarons with filling were not too sweet.

Hm, methinks it's time for that salt caramel (Infiniment Caramel) macaron to be devoured! The Pierre Herme baking book is coming out in July 2010, and I will be at the bookshop to pore over every secret.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Delights of Buckthorne and Wild Roses

I just returned from London.

It was terribly amusing when I entered Harvey Nichols and headed straight to the gourmet jam isle. Did I know? I didn't! But it drew me, nonetheless, like a bee to pollen. After all, it is bees we have to thank for for jams in the first place!

Nonetheless. I chuckled to myself while I rearranged the jam jars so they would look more photogenic. I debated with myself for some minutes if I really was going to purchase Swedish jam when I live in Sweden, and this was London, but since I enjoyed the jellies at the Grand Hotel (Stockholm) with that interesting buckthorne taste, I had to try it.

The verdict is uniquely delicious. Rosehip and wild buckthorne jam I highly recommend. I am noticing more and more that my favorite jams are on the lower end of sugar. Usually this means it is 60% fruit and 40% sugar thereabouts.

Seeing we have both rosehips AND buckthorne at the country house I might need to try to make a huge batch of this jam myself! Endless tasty on toast. The jar label recommends with savoury foods as well. Perhaps? Perhaps.

Friday, March 05, 2010

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Along with leisurely breakfasts ...

I felt a real pang when I saw a salad being served at a restaurant. Just the thought of all those greens and fresh crunch made me feel almost woeful in the middle of a wintry February.

There is a cure though:

We all do our part, hopefully, to live sustainably. Part of my pact with myself is to try to eat vegetarian for almost all of my meals except dinner. And even with dinner, I still try to limit the meat intake. Though I'm not a regular eater of beef which apparently is one of the highest on the carbon footprint list (just sayin').

This recipe is not difficult, but can feel quite time-consuming if you're very hungry.

Oven Baked Eggs with Harissa, Goat Cheese and Roasted Vegetables
serves 1-3

1 sliced yellow bell pepper
1 sliced red bell pepper
1 sliced zucchini (medium thin slices)
2-3 large shallots halved
1 log of goat cheese (chevre) (my favorite is the peppery Spanish kind if you can find it)
2-6 best quality eggs
As much harissa as you can stand
1 green chile
olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 teaspoon salted butter

Small ceramic baking dishes

Preheat oven to 400 F/200 C

Prepare all the vegetables. Sear the green chile over a gas flame until blackened all over. Let cool and then peel. Remove the stem and chop coarsely. Set aside.

On a wide baking sheet, lay out the vegetables in one row. Drizzle generously with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Roast for around 10-15 minutes.

In the ceramic dish/es, add a bit of butter, then a smear of harissa (this is usually how much I can take spice wise). Lay several thick coins of goat cheese on the bottom. When the vegetables are roasted, lay the vedge over the goat cheese and then crack one to two eggs on top.

In the already warm oven place the filled dishes and wait around 10-15 minutes until the whites are set.

This dish might improve by baking the eggs more slowly, but I'm usually too hungry to try!

I get Harissa in a tube these days. You can also search for my homemade Harissa recipe which is a spicy taste of heaven, as well on the search bar above.

Friday, February 12, 2010

It's him!

I always take my guests to Lux Choklad och Efterätt on Lilla Essingen on Stockholm. It can be quite a haul. Imagine my previous disappointment when semla season came around and Lux -- my favorite place for buns, had not done a semla last year. A semla, by the way, is a Fat Tuesday bun. It's a cardamom bun filled with marzipan and whipped cream and then dusted lightly with powdered sugar. I talked with the bun man about my disappointment that they made no Fat Tuesday buns, and lo and behold. Not only did he make a semla this year it won the best in Fat Tuesday buns in Stockholm.

In any event, the moment I had eaten the first bun from Lux, I declared I would one day marry the bun man in gratitude. But now he's been revealed to all of Sweden alas!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Dreams of owning?

There's a competition to win your own dream restaurant.

Check it out! It's limited to an open call in Boston, so swing by if you think you've got the charisma/stamina to win!

I'm busy

Eating my way through all the delicious things you can get here in America.

Highlights so far:

Oxtail pho
BBQ Pork Vietnamese Sandwiches
Wahoo's fish tacos
In-n-out Cheeseburger animal style
Roast beef in an onion pancake sandwich
Tofu three ways
Mom's scallops in a butter, coriander, and caper sauce
An Everything Bagel with lox schmear
Smores cupcakes from Chikabar
Spicy tuna onigiri (rice ball)
Itoen's Blueberry Green Tea

Planning to eat:

Oh, endless

I tried to get some chocolate bread pudding from The Dessert Truck, but I didn't realize it has now a storefront instead of a truck front.

Signing off, Joy dreams of chocolate bread pudding ...

Monday, January 18, 2010

I love ...

me some savory pancakes! Though I will not be saying no to the delicious spring onion pancake at my favorite OC restaurant (Little Peking in Westminster) stuffed with roast beef, I am also a huge fan of savory Korean pancakes.

Check out this recipe at the NYTimes.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

My Review of Afternoon Tea at the Grand Hotel

Published in the Swedish Bulletin winter edition 2009/2010.

photo by Helen Pe

I'm even in one of the photos. It was scrumptious.

World's healthiest soup

The debut of my new system camera! The fortuitous discovery of the world's healthiest soup! Ok, I'm not entirely certain if this is actually, scientifically, the healthiest soup in the world, but I'm betting if you eat this soup you will boost your immune system since everything in it good for you: the combo of vedge and chicken (super healthy), ginger (also very good for your immune system), beets (apparently amazing), and carrots (everyone knows they're good for you!), almonds and yoghurt.

It's actually a revisit of one of my old favorites: carrot ginger soup. But lo and behold, I had some yellow beets in my fridge just waiting for me to whip them into something interesting.

I had guests coming, and for an informal and inexpensive dinner, nothing could be homier or cozier than homemade soup. You're going to need an immersion blender though.

World's Healthiest Soup: Carrot, Yellow Beet, & Ginger Soup

2 T of olive oil or butter (preferably European/Swedish)
1 lb carrots peeled and chopped
2 very large shallots (equiv one large onion), chopped
4 yellow beets peeled, chopped/diced
1 inch (2.2 cm) of ginger cut in two lumps
6 cups (10 dl?) of chicken stock (I used two bouillon cubes of Knorr and covered the vegetables with boiling water)

For feta creme with almonds

100 grams (3.5 oz) feta
3 T of kefir/fil or any plain yogurt
3 T of almonds
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste


handful of chopped chives

In a large thick bottomed pot saute the shallots in butter or olive oil until they are translucent over medium high heat, about 5-10 minutes. Next add chopped carrots and beets and saute for ten more minutes stirring the vegetables often. Add stock and two ginger lumps. Bring to a simmer and lower the heat. Simmer for around an hour.

While the soup is simmering combine feta and yoghurt and almonds by using an immersion blender to form a feta creme. Add the yoghurt/kefir/fil bit by bit. If it is too thick, use more yoghurt. Season with salt and pepper.

When the soup is finished, fish around for one of the ginger lumps and discard it. Blend the soup. Taste for level of salt and see if you need to add more broth or salt depending on consistency.

Serve with feta almond creme, crusty bread and a salad. For a nice touch, pop the crusty bread in an oven for five minutes before serving it.

As my mom unduly pointed out before, the soup alone can taste a bit like baby food, but the feta creme gives it the sophisticated twist to take it out of the infant isle. In my opinion!

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Friday, January 08, 2010

West Coast is the Best Coast

Being from California, there is no doubt in my mind the riches to be mined from the multicultural population are a bounty. A feast for the senses.

And now everyone is pulling up decade lists, but the Los Angeles Times has done us one better == a top 25 year list!

I do fear trying all the ones I want to try without having a gym membership.