Jul 19, 2011

let's talk about swedish food (breakfast edition)

i could say it's delicious and end it right there, just show photos of sweden's incredible smörgåsbord of food offerings. we would all be quite satisfied i am sure. but really, i must go on and on about it, and it starts with swedish bread, incredible bread, the best bread i've ever tasted, so let's talk breakfast, where this bread plays a starring role.

oh my, i could write sonnets about its thick slices, soft spongy center, sturdy, rustic, floury crust, total perfection. so perfect, i will now devote myself entirely to finding how to procure or make this bread every day. really, it's that good (and i'm not even a bread person, most days i am rhapsodizing about vegetables in season). swedish bread, always ready to be slathered with some of that delightful swedish caviar spread, (available outside sweden at ikea) served with a sliced 4- or 8- minute egg, your choice of course. or, there is incredible swedish butter, (fluffy, lightly salted, similar to danish butter-the best) and amazing preserves of every variety: cloudberry, lingonberry, etc. oh and have you seen swedish butter knives? they are hand carved from wood, beautiful, and all the better to lavishly spread upon your bread. brilliant.

or perhaps you are after the swedish classic breakfast, and you drape your bread, very indulgently, with fresh cured salmon (gravlax). oh such delicious possibilities for breakfast Sweden! i want to eat swedish every day now. such a deceptively simple cuisine. as with all simple things, the quality of the ingredients must be perfect. of course, i love it completely. after wanting to visit sweden for 20 years, it was totally worth the wait. it was proust who noted that absence was the most loyal, most faithful, most ubiquitous of all the presences, and he was so right. sweden, where have you been all my life?

next, a visit to Östermalms saluhall,central food market in stockholm.

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