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Monthly Archives: September 2016

New Finnish Range – Product Sneak Peek

September 28, 2016 | Leave a comment

ScandiKitchen Finnish Range – Coming Soon..

We’re counting down the days to the arrival of our brand new Finnish range – have a look at what’s coming and let us know what you think!


Want to win £20 to spend in our online shop?

Simply choose your three favourite product from below, and send in an email to: finland@scandikitchen.co.uk before 23.59 Sunday 2nd of October. Enthusiastic and excited emails are highly encouraged and appreciated, although the winners will  be picked at random.

Want to win £20 to spend in our online shop?

Simply choose your three favourite product from above, and send in an email to: finland@scandikitchen.co.uk before 23.59 Sunday 2nd of October. Enthusiastic and excited emails are highly encouraged and appreciated, although the winners will  be picked at random.

Like this post? Know someone you think will be excited about any of these? Share it on Facebook to spread the Finland-love – button below.

Matpakke – Norwegian Packed Lunch

September 22, 2016 | Leave a comment

Matpakke – An Intro To a Norwegian Packed Lunch

Ask any Norwegian what they had for lunch in school and the answer will be ‘matpakke’ (or nistepakke) – packed lunch. That’s right, in Norway there’s no school dinners or equivalent. The food you eat, you bring from home.

A packed lunch doesn’t sound bad though? You may envisage lovely fresh salads, crusty baguettes with lots of filling or maybe dinner leftovers. But really, in most cases, it looks something like this;
Norwegian matpakke

Two slices of bread – open sandwiches – with ham and cheese, for example. They come wrapped in greaseproof paper, with the all important mellomleggspapir*  inbetween each open sandwich.

*Mellomleggspapir are rectangular pieces of greaseproof paper bought specifically to keep your sandwiches from sticking to each other. Very often the only thing protecting your jam sandwich from the liver pate. However well-intended, most Norwegians can testify – the mellomleggspapir is usually just a tad too small too form a fully protective layer inbetween each sandwich – but hey – jam and liver pate isn’t too bad (ikke sant?).


Matpakke is such an integrated part of the Norwegian ‘folkesjel’ – people-soul – that we even have a song written about it;

In case your Norwegian is a bit rusty – the gist of the song is that having your food in greaseproof paper instead of on a plate is a bit sad. The toppings are squashed, mixed up and stick to each other. Boo-hoo.


Despite having a ton of toppings to choose from, very many people will have the same topping every day for their entire school-career. 2 slices with salami and mayo every day for 7 years? Done. Tired of it? Yes. Bother changing it? But why would you?

 

matpakke

What your matpakke aspires to be.

Have you got any stories or memories of matpakke? We’d love to hear them.

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Norwegian Matpakke – Tips, Tricks and Insights.

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Norsk Matpakke – Our top facts, tips and insights about Matpakke

  1. If you’re very lucky, your mum or dad makes it for you.
    They’re usually busy busy in the morning – hence the lack  of variety.
    If you make it yourself, well, having the same every day is part of the charm, ikke sant?
  2. We all secretly love the little notes mamma sometimes write on the paper. ‘Have a lovely day sweetheart’ or ‘ Kisses from mummy’
    matpakke med hilsen fra mamma

  3. Cucumber is never good in matpakke. It goes soft and looses its crunch. Choose pepper for retained crunch.
  4. If having cheese, the key to avoiding dry edges is to ensure the cheese is perfectly bread shaped – ie. tear or cut of any bits hanging of the side. They will go dry. Two of the most popular cheeses in Norway are Norvegia and Nokkelost. Versatile and yummy.
      Noras Hjemmelaget Blåbærsyltetøy – Blueberry Jam 400g
      £4.99

  5. Prefer crispbread for lunch? The two top sellers in Norway are oat – Wasa Havre and wheat/poppy seed – Wasa Frukost (also enjoyed other times of the day). Pack the toppings in clingfilm and assemble when ready to eat to avoid the crispbread going soft.

  6. Mackarel in tomato is great, but it will smell (not to you – just everyone around you).
  7. Liver pate MUST be fully and tightly wrapped or covered by mellomleggspapir* – otherwise it will go brown and dry and not very nice.
  8. Salami – usually mutton salami – goes really well with mayonnaise, but be sure to put the mayo underneath the salami so it doesn’t stick to the mellomleggspapir. 

  9. Ham and cheese is a classic. Perhaps the ultimate packed lunch topping as it can be varied so much (not that anyone ever does this, mind you). Add pesto, some mustard, or perhaps some piffi-spice for a cheese-toastie feeling.
  10. Brown cheese – but of course… Sometimes it can go soft and sticky on very warm days (luckily rarely an issue in Norway) – especially if paired with jam.

    norwegian breakfast brown cheese brunost

    Your average Norwegian classroom (no, not really).

  11. And to drink? Most schools in Norway have a milk-subscription offer – where you pay a small amount for a daily 250 ml of milk that gets delivered to your school. Some schools offer the same with fruit. Every week, one or two people in class – ordenselever* – are responsible for collecting and passing these out to those on the list. Allergic to milk? Bring a bottle – water is encouraged, juice or squash frowned upon by your lærer (teacher).
    Ordenselev fruktordning

*Ordenselever – a title given to one or two pupils who are responsible for keeping the classroom in order – by for example wiping the blackboard between lessons, emptying the recycling – and of course bringing the milk.

Aaah matpakke. Something we love to hate, but nevertheless look forward to every single day – if not for the contents, then just for the fact that it offers a little break. And we get to eat.

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Our Favourite Finnish Things

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Finland – Land of Coffee, Salmiakki and Saunas

In just a few weeks – early October – we are launching our new Finnish range. That’s right, around 60 new Finnish products are hitting the shelves (have a look at what’s coming here). From rye bread to liquorice, ice cream toppings to chocolate – we are super excited. Can one ever have enough salmiakki or dark strong coffee? We think not.

There are thousand things to love about Finland (in addition to the lakes, of course), here are – in no particular order – a few of them.

    1. Coffee – Kavhi
      Finns drink approximately 12kg of coffee per person per year. That equals roughly 240 cafetieres, or 1200 cups – depending on size – an average of 3.3 cups per day. The word caf-finn-ated suddenly got a new meaning (oh ho ho – excuse our humour, we have had too much coffee and are currently bouncing up and down).
      coffee finnish kahvi
    2. Liquorice – Salmiakki
      Ask any Scandinavian (or Dutch) – they’ll tell you the super salty intense stuff is The Only Liquorice worth eating. In Finnish called Salmiakki, it has an addictive edge that is as alluring to us as a freshly made bread. Finnish is arguably the best – you can check out our pan-Nordic range of liquorice here – Norwegian, Danish, Swedish and Finnish – we have it all.liquorice salmiakki lakris
    3. Chocolate – Suklaa
      They’re good at many things, the Finns. Chocolate is not widely associated with chocolate, but the Karl Fazer brand is truly worth seeking out. It is smooth and creamy, slightly less sweet than many other brands – and it comes in a range of flavours – Salmiakki (of course!), the Praline-filled Geisha, mint-crispy Marianne-flavoured, and the yummy chewy Dumle toffees.

      More coming – have a look here.
    4. Moomin-trolls 
      These little trolls have a fond place in many Scandi and Nordic hearts. The books, written and beautifully illustrated by Tove Jansson were all published between 1954 and 1970 and were also made into a television series. Raise your hand if you had nightmares about Mårran/Hufsa/The Groke and the scary electrifying little Hattifnatteners?Image result for mummitrollet
    5. The Finnish Language
      Finnish has a word for everything, that’s right – one word where in English you’d need a whole sentence. Some examples;
      Juoksentelisinkohan? – I wonder if I should run around aimlessly?
      Hyppytyynytyydytys – Bouncy-cushion satisfaction
      (any more – please please let us know in the comments. We love these!)

      running around aimlessly
    6. Finnish Rye Bread – Ruisleipä
      Finnish rye bread is robust, dark and full  of flavour – and it pairs oh so well with toppings such as smoked salmon or herring. If you are yet to try the latter, get your hands on some mustard herring (for example, this one) and eat it on a slice of Finnish rye bread (lightly toasted if you prefer). You can thank us later.
      rye bread herring sandwich
    7. Saunas
      Of the many Finnish contributions to the world, the sauna has to be one of the most famous ones. With over 3 million saunas in a country of around 5 million people, it is undeniably an important part of the Finnish society – not surprisingly maybe, for a country who for large parts of the year experiences relatively harsh and cold weather conditions.
      Image result for traditional finnish sauna
    8. Design
      Finnish design – need we say more? Beautiful, simple and sometimes almost supernatural in its use of organic shapes, materials and colours.finnish print marimekko

 

Any other things you love about Finland? Let us know.

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15 Facts About Cinnamon Buns

September 20, 2016 | Leave a comment

15 Things You Need to know about Cinnamon Buns

This year, as every year, we are celebrating the official Cinnamon Bun day. A national holiday in Sweden (not really, but it should be) – it falls every year on October the 4th and is celebrated by eating cinnamon buns en masse.

For many Scandis, us included – every day is cinnamon bun day. There’s always a reason for a cinnamon bun. It is, as you may know, also referred to as an edible hug. No? Just us then. Because that’s how we feel about it. It is as comforting and warming as a hug from your best friend, a stranger or your dog. Whichever of those you prefer.

As Scandinavians we feel it is our duty to educate those less knowledgeable about this harmonic symbiosis of flour, butter, sugar and cinnamon. This is lesson 1, based on our post from last year (read it here) – we’ll keep it simple.


Cinnamon Buns – Cinnamon  Swirls – Kanelbulle – Kanelsnegle – Skillingsbolle
  1. The cinnamon bun’s origin is a hotly debated topic. The Swedes claim it originated there in the 1920s. Usually, we won’t shy away from a debate, but in this case – it doesn’t matter where it is from. We love it too much. It is a love-child of Scandinavia.
  2. Cinnamon bun day has been celebrated since 1999, and the bun itself didn’t really become popular until the 1950s.
  3. A Nordic cinnamon bun is typically made with a bit of ground cardamom in the dough – this is what differentiates it from other cinnamon buns, such as the over-the-top sticky sweet buns you often see in north America.
  4. A real cinnamon bun (a Scandi one) does not have icing on the top. In Norway, a sprinkle of normal granulated sugar – in Sweden those lovely big-ish sugar crystals called Pearl Sugar.
    kanelbullar cinnamon buns
  5. A typical Swede eats 316 cinnamon buns per year – in our central London cafe we sell about 60 cinnamon buns per day (and we all smell faintly of cinnamon..mm!).
  6. That is roughly 21600 per year.
  7.  If you stack all these buns, the total height would be 648 meters, or roughly the height of the Shanghai Tower, the 2nd tallest building in the world with 632 meters. Only Burj Al Kalifa would be taller, with its 830 meters. (Eat more buns, people!)
    cinnamon bun lenght

    Or, you can bake a really really long one to share.

  8. In Norway (and highly likely elsewhere in Scandinavia too) there are various very important cinnamon bun competitions held every year, where readers of the local newspaper nominate and vote for the best cinnamon bun in town. It is prestigious and competitive, and taken very, very serious.
  9. The same place refers to its cinnamon buns as Skillingsboller – ‘schilling buns’ – referring to the cost of one back in the day.
    cinnamon buns skillingsboller
  10. In Denmark, they are often called ‘cinnamon snails’ – Kanelsnegl’, and in Finland, ‘slapped ear’ – Korvapuusti. Maybe because if someone did slap your ear, a cinnamon bun would be a suitable treat to comfort you in your pain and distress.
  11. Cinnamon buns are made a variety of different ways. You can swirl them and pop them into a little paper case to keep all the buttery sugary gooeyness; do a simple swirl and bake, cut side up, or do a thinner swirl baked cut sides out. We love them all.
  12. The cinnamon bun is perfect – it doesn’t need meddling with. Still, some people make things as the below – a bacon cinnamon bun roll sandwich. Proceed at your own responsibility; we take no responsibility for whatever may come from consuming this (delicious?) concoction.
    Cinnamon roll with bacon
  13. There are two kinds of cinnamon; Ceylon and Cassia. Ceylon is also referred to as sweet cinnamon – or true cinnamon and is the most popular one. It is a bit more expensive than the other, but the taste is miles better. Get it if you can – otherwise your buns won’t be as good.
  14. Cinnamon also contains a substance called coumarin – which can damage the liver if consumed in larger quantities. The Scandinavian countries regularly relish in this fact, purely so they can put a scare cinnamon headline out, such as;
    ‘How to avoid cinnamon-poisoning’
    ‘Be careful with cinnamon’
    ‘Cinnamon buns can damage your liver’But fear not – you would have to eat approximately 10 cinnamon buns per day for an extended period of time to notice anything.
  15. It is Scandifically proven that it is impossible to resist a fresh cinnamon bun still warm from the oven. Try it. Sprinkle with almonds for a nutty taste..mmmm!
    Cinnamon Twists Bronte Aurell ScandiKitchen

    Phoro credit: Peter Cassidy, for Ryland Peters.

Enjoy Bun Day on the 4th October – we want to see your buns, so don’t forget to send us a picture to iloveherring@scandikitchen.co.uk and we’ll post the best ones on facebook and instagram. Prizes for the best looking buns.

Fancy making your own? Check out our recipe for the world’s best cinnamon buns and head to our webshop to buy our cinnamon bun baking kit, containing the essential ingredients you need for a Scandi cinnamon bun.

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The Breakfast Edition; Scandi VS British Breakfast

September 15, 2016 | Leave a comment

Breakfast, Frokost, Morgenmad, Frukost. 

As the saying goes (well, in Scandinavia at least), dear child bears many names. We love breakfast. It is often the main reason we go to bed at night – to fast forward to another lovely meal. Best enjoyed with big yawns, squinty eyes and coffee-hungry brains.

Fun-fact: In Sweden and Norway, breakfast is called Frukost/Frokost. The same word means lunch in Denmark. In Denmark, breakfast is called morgenmad – morning food. So naturally, a lot of confusion arises around the two first meals of the day when Scandis visit each other. Frokost? Nej mand, it is way too early. Frokost? Vad då, it is far too late!

Ah, the stress!

Important-fact: 1 of 3 children in the UK don’t have breakfast. We are working with charity Magic Breakfast to reduce this number – please read more here about this important cause.

Whatever you call it, the first meal of the day is important, and each country has its own traditions. Scandinavian breakfasts differs a lot from the British – so, because we know you’ve been wondering, let us present – some basic differences between British breakfasts vs Scandi breakfasts .

The Brits have.. toast.
In Sweden: Crispbread. More crispbread.
In Norway: Various breads or crispbread. The one called Frukost.
In Denmark: Rye bread.

swedish crispbread knackebrod

The Brits top theirs with.. butter and Marmite or jam.
In Sweden: Egg and kaviar, cheese (Aseda graddost)
In Norway: Norvegia cheese or brown cheese.
In Denmark: Cheese. Butter.

Swedish breakfast egg kaviar

The Brits drink..tea or instant coffee.
In Sweden: Black coffee. Proper brewed coffee. Like this one from Zoegas.
In Norway: Black coffee. Sometimes with milk. This one from Friele, for example.
In Denmark: Black coffee. Proper brewed coffee. You get the drill.. we all like real coffee!

Image result for black coffee gif

 

The Brits also drink..orange juice.
In Sweden: Milk, sometimes juice.
In Norway: Milk, juice sometimes.
In Denmark: Milk or juice.

Milk for breakfast in Sweden, Denmark, Norway

 

The Brits who don’t eat bread eats.. cereal.
In Sweden: Filmjolk (a light natural yougurt) with granola or musli and some berries. Or kalaspuffar.
In Norway: Frokostblanding – breakfast mix! Ie., cereal. With banana  if you’re being virtuous.
In Denmark: Skyr or Ymer – a type of natural yogurt – with Ymerdrys – a lovely rye bread crumb cereal. 
swedish breakfast kalaspuffar
For a weekend breakfast, the Brit will have.. a full English (or components thereof).

In Sweden: ALL the crispbread. Several types of bread. Eggs and kaviar, different cheeses, jams, perhaps a ham or pate. Something bun-like. Yogurt pots, fresh fruits, something with egg. Coffee. Juices. Milk. Many many hours, newspapers and good company.

In Norway: Several types of bread. Toaster handy. Fresh rolls. Norvegia and brown cheese. Boilt eggs. Ham and chopped up cucumber and red pepper. Tomatoes. Jams. Pate. Basically – your entire fridge. Milk and juice to drink. Coffee AND tea. Many many hours, the radio in the background and good company.

In Denmark: Fresh rolls from the baker – at least one per person plus a Danish pastry and white bread, which is never normally eaten. Rye bread. Cheeses and jams and marmalade. OR a full on Scandi brunch with scrambled eggs, bacon, all the sandwich toppings in the fridge. Juice and milk, tea and coffee. Perhaps a shot of Gammel Dansk (a digestif) or three if it is a special occasion.

dansk morgenmad danish breakfast

Drool.

 

There you have it. The full low down on Scandi breakfasts. Fancy it? To shop Scandi favourite cheeses, jams, coffees and more have a look in our webshop – click  here.

Breakfast of Champions – Support Magic Breakfast

September 14, 2016 | Leave a comment

Magic Breakfast Charity – Start your day doing something good

advert screen shot ws

Don’t go to school on an empty stomach.

With school having started again, it is time for a re-run of a cause close to our hearts and bellies.

  • It’s a very sad fact that 1 in 3 children in England go to school without having eaten breakfast. Even worse, that for one in four kids, the school meal at lunch is the only proper cooked meal they will have that day. Yes, you read that correctly.

The charity Magic Breakfast works with schools in deprived areas to ensure that children who most need it will get breakfast before the school day start. They provide porridge, bagels, toast and cereal – and the kids can then start their learning with full tummies. Because how can you learn anything when your tummy rumbles?

Since February 2015 we have been working with Magic Breakfast by donating one breakfast to a child for each bowl of porridge sold in our café. You get breakfast, they get breakfast. And in August this year, our head office joined in on the fun by setting up a penny jar – we encourage each other to do a weekly penny dump into the jar – the contents will go in their entirety to Magic Breakfast.

Every time you buy a bowl of porridge at our place, we will donate one breakfast to a child via Magic Breakfast.

Just like that. A bowl for bowl.

So, when your mother told you porridge was good for you, well, little did she know it was also going to be good for someone else, too.

We hope to see you all to pop by for our delicious oat and rye porridge with lovely toppings, such as nuts, seeds, fruit, honey, cinnamon – or maybe try one of our Guest Porridges that visit from time to time. Not only is porridge quick and easy in a hectic morning – it is also wonderfully warming and nutritious, and can be tailored to your taste and needs. Feeling fruity? Have yours with fresh berries. In need of a hug? Add a sprinkle of cardamom and lots of cinnamon and a drizzle of honey. Want it creamy? Cook it with milk.

We really want to continue supporting Magic Breakfast as much as we can. So please help out – pop by and eat porridge at ours and feel full and happy in the knowledge that someone else will be, too.

You can read more about Magic Breakfast right here

Thank you all for your continued support in this – we feel very passionately about full bellies, about children’s right to learn. About child welfare, in general. Together, we can make a bit of a difference.

Lots of love

The Kitchen People

X

PS: Like the look of that lovely porridge? Find the recipe in our first book – the ScandiKitchen Cookbook.

Look Inside: Fika & Hygge Baking Book

September 8, 2016 | Leave a comment

Our New Book – A Look Inside

Yes, we talk a lot about Fika & Hygge – especially now with our new book officially out. It is a baking book, with recipes from across Scandinavia. From small bakes and biscuits, to celebration cakes and elaborate buns there’s something there for any occasion, small or large – certain to add to the feeling of hygge. In addition, the beautiful pictures makes us all long for winter in Scandinavia (even the non-Scandis!) with crinkly white snow, lots and lots of candles, knitted jumpers and fika-time inside.

Here are a few of the ScandiKitchen staff’s favourite recipes from the book (we were lucky enough to do a lot of cake-testing for this one! All in the name of creating the best baking book possible).

That Banana Cake Therese

‘That banana cake’ is the banana cake we serve in our cafe. Wonderfully moist and full of banana flavour, with a light frosting that perfectly complements the dense cake. Worth hunting down brown bananas for.

Banana Cake - ScandiKitchen

 Sarah Bernard – Biskvier – Martina

Little delectable morsels of chocolate, chocolate cream and a marzipanny base. Unbeatable combination and great with a cup of coffee, or as a simple dessert with a scoop of good quality vanilly ice cream. Super rich – but I somehow manage to squeeze in at least three of these. They take a little time to put together, but the result is worth it!

Sarah Bernhard - ScandiKitchen

Gingerbread with Lingonberry – Roxanne

Soft spiced gingerbread cake layered with cream flavoured with fresh tart lingonberries and a hint of sweetness – just delicious. And very pretty too.

Gingerbread & Lingonberry Cake - ScandiKitchen

 

Have the book? Do let us know if you try any of the recipes – we’d love to hear about it.

WIN The ScandiKitchen Kit – Books, Canvas Bag, Mug & Sweets

September 1, 2016 | Leave a comment

WIN the whole ScandiKitchen kit

As you may know, we have a new book. It is beautiful, if we may say so ourselves, and makes us want to bake and eat all the things. And we think you’ll like it too.

So – here’s the deal. Answer one simple question, and YOU can be the lucky winner of the following:

ScandiKitchen Competition Prize

The contents are as follows;

1 x ScandiKitchen Pick’n’Mix Selection
1 x ScandiKitchen ‘May the Norse be with you’ canvas bag
1 x ScandiKitchen Mug
1 x The ScandiKitchen CookBook by Bronte Aurell
1 x ScandiKitchen: Fika & Hygge by Bronte Aurell

It is the perfect Scandi starter pack. Fancy it? Go on, we know you do.

To win, simply answer the following question:

– What is the title of the new ScandiKitchen book?

A.) The ScandiKitchen CookBook

B.) The ScandiKitchen Baking Book

C.) ScandiKitchen : Fika & Hygge

Send your answer by email to iloveherring@scandikitchen.co.uk before Tuesday 6th September 2016 at midday . Winner will be drawn from all correct entries.

The usual rules apply. UK residents only. No cheating. Only one winner. No alternative prize and no cash alternative.

Good luck!

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