Sailor’s beef – beer week #4

Sailor’s beef was first documented in Sweden at the beginning of the 19th century. It is an easy course to make and that is the reason why it was possible to make it at sea.

Sailor’s beef

  • 8-10 Potatoes, peeled and sliced into 0,5 cm slices
  • 600 g Beef Roulade, cut in 10 cm pieces
  • 2 large Onions, sliced
  • 1-2 dl Water
  • 3 dl Beer
  • 1 beef Stock cube
  • Butter
  • 1-2 Bay leaves
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Parsley, chopped
  • Pickled gherkin, sliced lengthwise

Peel and slice the potatoes, fry the onion rings in butter in a pan – not to hard only so that they get soft. Fry the meat in the pan until it has colour, add salt and pepper to the meat.

Use a cast iron pot and make 2-3 layers of potatoes, onion and meat. Pour the water in to the recently used pan and whisk out the flavours from frying onion and meat. Pour the fluid in the pot together with the beer. Add bay leaves.

Let come to a boil and let simmer until the meat is tender, approximately 1 hour.

Serve with chopped parsley and sliced pickled gherkin. Enjoy!

Nordic food as healthy as Mediterranean food?

Scientists at Uppsala University recently started a study wanting to examine the old an the new Nordic food in comparison to the Greek food, since Greek food is proven to have a positive effect on blood pressure, lipoproteins and weight.

The Mediterranean food contains a lot of vitamins, antioxidants and fibers. Healthy fat in the form of olive oil and focus on fish and chicken.

The translation of Mediterranean food into Nordic food would be something like this.

  • rye bread
  • oatmeal
  • wheat bran
  • oats and barley
  • fennel
  • root vegetables
  • apple
  • spinach
  • blueberries
  • pears
  • plums
  • lingonberries
  • cale
  • dill
  • mustard
  • rape oil
  • fish; salmon, mackerel
  • chicken, turkey and other birds
  • cumin

It remains to be seen if the Nordic food has the same effect on health as the Mediterranean food, but looking at this list sure makes you believe in the health value of our Nordic provisions.

A Swedish crayfish party #2

In the autumn it is time for crayfish parties all over Sweden. We had excellent timing this year and had already planned an autumn journey to Sweden to attend a wedding and visit friends and family. If you don’t get a hold of fresh crayfish you can always but frozen at IKEA all over the world.

This is a crayfish party according to the Schmidts!

Crayfish liquor (enough for 4 kg crayfish)

  • 2 Onions, cut in large pieces
  • 4 l Water
  • 1 l Beer, lager
  • 1 dl Salt
  • 2 tbsp Sugar
  • 10-15 heads of Dill

Blend all the ingredients together, except for the heads of dill. Make sure that the salt and the sugar dissolve. Then put the crayfish and the heads of dill in layers and pour the fluid over. Let draw for at least an hour.

Homemade Västerbotten cheese pie with chanterelle

You need to eat a lot of crayfish to get full. All snaps make it hard to survive the evening without having something satisfying. This delicious pie help you overcome the evening.

Pie pastry

  • 3,5 dl Wheat flour
  • 150 g Butter
  • 2 tbsp Water
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt

Pie filling

  • 4 Egg yolks
  • 2 dl Milk
  • 2 dl Cream
  • 300 g Västerbotten cheese, grated
  • 200 g Chanterelle
  • 1 small Onion, chopped
  • Butter
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Nutmeg

Start with the pastry, mix butter and flour together. Use an electric mixer if you have one. Add water and salt. Press out the pastry in a pie dish and let it rest in the fridge for about 30 minutes.

In the meantime, fry the chanterelle and the onion in butter. Whisk the egg yolks, milk, cream and the spices together, grate the cheese. Fill your pie dish with the chanterelle and onion, pour over the milk mixture and finally sprinkle the cheese on top.

Bake in oven at 200 degrees Celsius, for 35-40 minutes.

Lysholms Linie Aquavit

Besides beer we also have a snaps or two to our crayfish. A very popular snaps is the Norwegian Linie Aquavit. 1805 the Norwegians sent a ship with snaps, stored in barrels, to Australia. Unfortunately the company that were receiving the snaps faced bankruptcy and the snaps were sent back to Norway. When it returned the Norwegians thought that the snaps tasted even better than before and from 1842 the Lysholms Linie Aquavit always passes the equator (the line) in a ships before it is filled into bottles and sold.

Music: The crayfish party were accompanied by our own horse and raucous voices, singing Swedish snappsvisor (snaps songs).

The economic man?

A friend in Sweden has the motto “free whisky tastes the best”. Need I say he is economical, not to say stingily. I do not consider myself stingy but after todays excursion I might reconsider.

Saturday is the local market day at Kollwitzplatz, in Berlin. The supply of mushrooms is great. Despite this we took the car and drove 100 km to Poland to buy cep. Why? Cause the prices are better. Well, that’s half the truth. We wanted to explore the eastern region of Brandenburg as well. What an experience! We passed the most depressive city I’ve ever visited in Germany – Frankfurt an der Oder – the border town.

Frankfurt an der Oder – or Mordor.

Once in Poland we bought some wonderful cep. Small whole mushrooms for 4 €/Kilo. The big ones were even cheaper – 2 €/Kilo. The next couple of days the blog will be crammed with mushrooms.

We left the Autobahn on the way home and took a detour over Märkische Schweiz. This is a funny name. Almost all German states that have a hilly ground are named … Schweiz. In Brandenburg it is a laugh. There was absolutely no difference of altitude in this part of Brandenburg compared to the surroundings. However, if we had skipped this detour we would have missed the nice bio-café in Ihlow. A farm with a café serving dishes with ingredients from the garden. My wife had a great zucchini soup and I had a delicious black pudding (made at the farm).

In all, the total costs for the mushrooms might have been a bit higher going to Poland than to the local market but the great architecture in Frankfurt an der Oder compensated for the extra costs.

Music: Listening to Autobahn with Kraftwerk

Birdie, birdie nam nam

Quail is probably not the first bird most of you would prepare. It´s hard to find but it is rather easy to cook so give it a try. If you serve it as one course in a menu one quail is enough for each person.

Rosted quail with beluga lentils and fig vinegar sauce

  • 4 drawn Quails (vaktel, Wachtel)
  • fresh Thyme
  • 4 Garlic cloves
  • 3 dl Beluga lentils
  • 2 Onion
  • 1 Carrot
  • 1 green Apple
  • 3+5 dl Chicken stock
  • 1 dl Fig vinegar
  • 2 tbsp Sugar
  • Salt, pepper

Start with cooking the lentils in 5 dl chicken stock, thyme, chopped garlic (1 clove), onion and carrot. When they are done, pour away the broth.

Roast the quails in a pan with 2 garlic gloves, butter and 3 thyme sprigs until it gets colour. Cook in 100⁰ C until it reaches 57⁰. Let it rest 5 min before serving.

Fig sauce. Braise an onion and a garlic clove in butter and sugar. Add the fig vinegar and stock. Let it simmer til you have reduced it with 50%. If it is to thin add some butter and even some thickening. Finish it off with salt and pepper.

Warm the cooked lentils in a pan with butter and thyme. Add chopped apple. Serve the lentils with the roasted quail and the fig vinegar sauce.

Music: Listened to the extraordinary album by Movits!

Real Anchovy

Real anchovy or sardelle is not to be mixed up with tinned anchovy. Tinned anchovy contains of sprats, small herrings.

The sardelle is a pickled and salted real anchovy. Sardelle is also, like the sprat, a small herring which you can find in western and southern Europe, mainly in the Mediterranean sea and the Atlantic.

The sardelle is often used in the Italian kitchen because of its salty taste.

Summer lunch – Matjes herring

The summer has not yet left Berlin. This made us open the last cans of Matjes herring. Herring and of course barbecue are two to dishes you’ll find on every Swedish table in the summer. There are as many herring recipes as restaurants in Stockholm. Matjes herring is a type of salted herring with different spices. It is much salter and spicier than the versions served in NL or Germany.  It is normally served with sour creme, chives and red onions. In this salad it is accompanied with pickled gherkins, leek, capers and a mustard vinaigrette. Enjoy with a cold beer and a snaps.

Matjes herring, potatoes, leek, capers, cucumber and mustard vinaigrette.

  • 2 cans of Matjes herring à 200 g (you’ll find it in IKEA-stores all over the world)
  • 8 boiled Potatoes
  • 2 Salted pickled gherkins
  • 10 cm Cucumber
  • 10 cm Leek
  • 4 tbsp Capers
  • 1 dl oil
  • 2 tbsp sweet Mustard
  • 2 tbsp Vinegar
  • Pepper and salt

Mix oil, mustard, vinegar, salt and pepper to a vinaigrette. Cut the warm potatoes into slices. Chop gherkins, cucumbers, capers and leek. Arrange potatoes, herring and veggies on a plate. Pour the salad sauce on top.

Music: Listening to Håkan Hellström

Wallenbergare with petit pois

This course is named after a famous Swedish family in the financing business, the Wallenbergs.  Most likely did they come across the recipe when Marcus Wallenberg (the elder, 1864-1943) married  Amalia Hagdahl, daughter of the chef Charles Emil Hagdahl. A similar recipe is to be found in the cookbook “Kokkonsten” wich includes more than 3 000 recipes from C.E Hagdahl, a book that his daughter Amalia helped him to write.


  • 500 g minced Veal
  • 6 Egg yolks
  • 2-3 dl Cream
  • Bread crumbs
  • Butter
  • Salt and pepper

If you have a food processor use it. Start by mixing the meat with salt, pepper and the egg yolks for approximately 1 minute. Then add all the cream at the same time and mix for another minute. Important, the meat, the cream and the egg yolks shall be cold, directly from the fridge.

Sprinkle some of the breadcrumbs on to a cutting-board, make four burgers and lay them on top of the breadcrumbs. Sprinkle the rest of the breadcrumbs on top of the burgers and fry them in butter in a pan. Approximately 3 minutes on each side or until they have a nice golden colour.

Petit pois

  • 2 dl small green Peas
  • 2 Shallots
  • 4 slices Bacon

Cut the onion and the bacon in small pieces. Start by frying the bacon then add the shallot and finally the peas.

Serve together with mashed potatoes and brown butter.

Music: Listening to the Swedish artist Meja playing her song – It’s all about the money

Weekend special

Starter – Artichoke and mozzarella salad

  • Mozzarella
  • Artichoke hearts
  • Lamb’s lettuce
  • Olive oil
  • Vinegar
  • Chilli, finely chopped
  • Lemon zest
  • Garlic, grated

Buy a really nice mozzarella and tear it to pieces, half the artichoke hearts and place it on a plate together with lamb’s lettuce. Splash olive oil and vinegar over the plate and finally add chopped chilli, lemon zest and grated garlic.

Main course – Veal with beluga lentils and sun-dried tomatoes

  • 400-500 g fillet of Veal
  • Butter
  • 1 Lemon, zest
  • 1/2 Lemon, juice
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 4 dl Beluga lentils
  • 1 Garlic clove
  • twig of fresh Thyme
  • 100 g salted Pork belly/Bacon
  • Chicken broth
  • 300 g Cherry tomatoes, dried

Start with the tomatoes, half them and put them on baking paper with salt, pepper, fresh thyme, slices of garlic and a bit of sugar in the oven for 1 hour on 150 degrees Celsius.

Fry the veal with butter in a pan until it gets a bit of a colour. Place aluminium foil with baking paper on top, place the meat and squeeze the lemon juice over it and the lemon zest. Wrap the meat and bake it in the oven (150 degrees Celsius) until the meat has a temperature of 55 degrees Celsius.

Add salt and pepper and cut the meat in four pieces, for serving.

Boil the lentils in chicken broth with a crushed garlic clove, a twig of fresh Thyme and salt. Cut the salted pork belly into small pieces and fry them in a pan. Remove the garlic clove and the Thyme twig from the lentils and add the fried salted pork.

Jerusalem artichoke sauce

  • 200 g Jerusalem artichokes
  • 2 dl Milk
  • 1 dl Cream
  • 0,5 dl Water
  • Chicken broth
  • Salt
  • White pepper
  • 1 Lemon, the juice

Peel and cut the artichokes in small pieces. Boil them with milk, cream, water and chicken broth until the artichokes are done. Mix and strain. Shortly before serving bring the sauce to boil and add the lemon juice. Is the sauce to thick, add more milk. When warm mix to get a nice foam.

Put the lentils on to a plate, lean the veal on to the lentils, place the dried tomatoes on top and add your Jerusalem artichoke foam.

Dessert – Mint mud cake and cherry sorbet

Mint mud cake

  • 2 Eggs
  • 3 dl Sugar
  • 150 g Butter
  • 1,5 dl Wheat flour
  • 3 tbsp Cacao
  • 1 Mint chocolate bar ( 100 g)

Set the oven on 175 degrees Celsius. Melt the butter and the chocolate. Blend everything together, butter a baking tin with a detachable brim and sprinkle it with coconut.

Bake it for approximately 30 minutes, it should still be “muddy” in the middle.

Cheery sorbet

  • 400 g Cherries
  • 1 dl dry White wine
  • 2 dl Water
  • 1 dl Sugar
  • 1/2 Lemon, the juice

Remove the pips from the cherries and mix them. Blend the mixture with the rest of the ingredients in a casserole. Bring it to boil and simmer shortly to make the sugar melt. Let it cool off and use an ice-cream maker for 20-40 minutes.


Risotto with mussels and shrimps

We made Moule marinés the other day and had some sea mussels left over. We saved them together with the broth from cooking the mussels and made a leftover-risotto.

Risotto with mussel and shrimps

  • 250 g Risotto rice
  • 1 Shallot, chopped
  • 2 Garlic cloves, chopped
  • Olive oil
  • 1-2 dl White wine
  • 5 dl Mussel or fish broth
  • 10 cm Leak, sliced
  • Sea mussels (without shell)
  • Shrimps
  • Parmesan
  • Lemon zest
  • Parsley
  • Chili powder
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Note that the fluid depends on the risotto rice you use, read the instructions for your rice brand.

Heat olive oil in a casserole, fry the shallot, the garlic and the rice until it is transparent. Add the fluid, little by little. Stir the risotto the entire time.

When you feel that the rice is almost done, add leak, mussels and shrimps. Spice the risotto with salt and pepper. Grate Parmesan cheese over the risotto and stir.

Before you serve, preferable on heated plates, decorate with cut parsley, lemon zest and chili powder.

Movie: Eaten while watching the Swedish thriller Johan Falk – National Target.