Sverige 2015

Sverige 2015

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Snö lyktor

Snow day in October? I'm okay with that.
I love the way the snow gently blankets the world in a sheet of white.

A winter wonderland.

Luke made his very first snö lykta. 
I think our neighbors thought we were doing some sort of satanic ritual.

Bring it on, Christmas. I'm ready for you.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

We are carnivores.

This weekend Luke and I went to Jersey City and Manhattan to visit Immanuel. Gabriel was on holiday from his university, so he was there as well. New York City is one of my favorite cities to visit. There is so much to see, to do, and to eat.

The first thing we did when we arrived was pay a visit to our favorite churrascaria in Tribeca. It is good that there is not a churrascaria close to where I live, because if there was, I might commit gluttony on a daily basis.

I love animals -- I really do...but I also really enjoy eating (some of) them.

Next, we decided to check out the occupation of Wall Street. It was really interesting. From what I saw, it is much less volatile than the news is making it out to be. Here is what we saw:

It was really interesting to see, and very thought-provoking. 

After that, we headed to Rockefeller Center. I have been there countless times, but I still love to go and look at all of the flags on display. It is magical. I try to make it there each time I visit New York. Someday I would like to ice skate there.

I have the best brothers in the world.

We ended the evening by watching Braveheart in Immanuel's apartment on his big screen. It was awesome

That's all for now.

Friday, October 21, 2011


I love watching the sun rise over the hills.

"The heavens declare the glory of God;
         And the firmament shows His handiwork."
                                                      ~Psalm 19:1

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Fångad av en stormvind...

Happy Autumn!

Today Messiah College graciously gave its employees a day off. I am so grateful for both of my jobs. I love my co-workers and the work that I do, but sometimes it's good to take a break to refresh and rejuvenate.

I've had an great day... please forgive my narcissism as I share it with you.

It was a day full of my favorite things...

I slept in until 7:15 am. It was fantastic.
First things first: coffee, my guilty pleasure.

I went for a run. I love running in the cool, crisp air.

After that I made myself a nice American breakfast while boogying to British pop (Lily Allen and Adele. I almost broke out the Spice Girls.)

Two scrambled eggs + two strips of turkey bacon + half of an English muffin + blackberries + orange juice (with extra pulp). YUM.

Note: to make the perfect scrambled eggs, cook them over low-to medium heat slowly. When they are still slightly moist, take the pan off the heat source and allow them to finish cooking. The eggs are delicious and you won't even need to add cheese because they taste rich and moist.

Normally I'm not a big shopper, but this time I had some killer coupons. I drove to the a shopping mall while listening to my childhood idol, Carola. It made me nostalgic. 
I ended up purchasing some really nice things.

I love secondhand bookstores. It's actually a problem. I have an addiction to buying books. Usually I go to Midtown Scholar, but I recently discovered The Book House and fell in love. It smells like books -- the best smell in the world. I couldn't stay very long -- it wouldn't be good for my bank account. 
When I'm elderly, I want to turn my house into a bookstore.

 Autumn and winter are my favorite seasons. I could live outside from October to March.

I ended the afternoon by visiting one of my favorite orchards: Paulus. I purchased house-made peach salsa and apple cider. The cider is the no-sugar-added kind...the kind that tastes like the cider that we used to make from the fruits of our apple trees in Sweden.

That was my day. How was yours?

Friday, April 29, 2011

Royal Wedding Extravaganza

Top of the morning to ya!

I'm back! For now, at least. Life is so busy that I barely have time to breathe -- but I'm loving every minute of it! I'm so blessed and grateful to have a loving (and ridiculously hilarious) husband, a wonderful family, amazing friends, two jobs that I adore, and really great co-workers. 

I do miss blogging, though. And what better day to get back to it than on a royal holiday? I love royal weddings. This day was almost as exciting for me as when our beautiful Swedish Crown Princess Victoria wed her beloved Daniel last year. Congratulations to Prince William and Catherine!

In celebration of this joyous occasion, Luke (my hubby) and I decided to throw a Royal Wedding Extravaganza! We decided that a day off would do us both some good (Luke worked two "normal" 13 hour days + two 17 hour days and I've been swamped at work this week -- so we thought we deserved it!) 
I asked one of the loveliest Brits I know what an appropriate British morning treat would be -- she suggested quiche and scones, so that's what we made!

Luke loves spicy food, so we decided to make Chorizo Quiche. Here is the recipe:

Chorizo Quiche
Adapted from The Food Network.

Butter, for greasing the dish
1 1/2 c all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
8 Tbsp chilled unsalted butter, diced
5 Tbsp chilled water, plus extra as needed
6 oz chorizo, or spicy Italian sausage, casings removed, and cooked until crisp
4 eggs
1/2 c Mexican crema, or creme fraiche
1 c grated Manchego, Swiss, or Pecorino Romano cheese
1/2 c diced russet potatoes, boiled until tender and cooled
1/4 c whole milk
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Grease 9-inch tart pan or glass pie dish with butter.
Place the flour and salt in a food processor and pulse to combine. Add the chilled butter and process to a coarse meal. With the machine running, add 5 Tbsp of water in a steady stream until the mixture forms a dough. Add additional water, 1 Tbsp at a time, if the dough is too dry.
Shape the dough into a ball and press into the bottom and sides of the prepared tart pan or pie dish. Refrigerate for 15 minutes. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Line the crust with foil and fill with pie weights (or dried beans). Bake for 15 minutes. Cool completely (can be made 1 day ahead).
Mix the chorizo and remaining ingredients. Pour into the prepared crust. Bake until the quiche is puffed and cooked through, or when a knife inserted into the center of the quiches comes out clean, about 45 minutes. Cool slightly. Serve warm or at room temperature.

To top this delicious morning treat off with something sweet, we also made:

Blueberry Scones with Lemon Glaze
Adapted from The Food Network

Blueberry Scones:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 Tbsp sugar
5 Tbsp unsalted butter, cold, cut in chunks
1 cup heavy cream, plus more for brushing the scones
1 cup fresh blueberries
Lemon Glaze:
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
1 lemon, zest finely grated
1 Tbsp unsalted butter

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Sift together the dry ingredients; the flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar. Using 2 forks or a pastry blender, cut the batter to coat the pieces with the flour. The mixture should look like coarse crumbs. Make a well in the center and pour in the heavy cream. Fold everything together just to incorporate; do not overwork the dough. Fold the blueberries into the batter. Take care not to mash or bruise the blueberries because their strong color will bleed into the dough.
Press the dough out on a lightly floured surface into a rectangle about 12 by 3 by 1 1/4 inches. Cut the rectangle in 1/2 then cut the pieces in 1/2 again, giving you 4 (3-inch) squares. Cut the squares in 1/2 on a diagonal to give you the classic triangle shape. Place the scones on an ungreased cookie sheet and brush the tops with a little heavy cream. Bake for 15-20 minutes until beautiful and brown. Let the scones cool a bit before you apply the glaze.
Technically you should make this simple lemon glaze in a double boiler (i.e. over a pot of simmering water with a heatproof bowl set on top), but it's even simpler to zap it in the microwave. Mix the lemon juice and confectioners' sugar together in a microwave-safe bowl. Stir until the sugar dissolves. Add the lemon zest and butter. Nuke it for 30 seconds on high. Whisk the glaze to smooth out any lumps, then drizzle the glaze over top of the scones. Let it set a minute before serving.

Add a spot of tea and you're ready to go. Cheers!

Monday, January 17, 2011

New York-Style Crumb Cake

Hello dears,

Last week, some of my in-laws came to our home for a Bible study and time of prayer. A firm believer in bonding through the breaking of bread, I wanted to serve a bite to eat. I decided to try my hand at Bon Apetit's New York-Style Crumb Cake. I am not going to lie, it was kind of fun baking something without using dietary substitutions or worrying about fat content. This cake is definitely not a health food item.

Although the recipe calls for 1 hour in the oven, I had to keep my cake in longer. Be sure to test it before pulling it out of the oven, to ensure that it is no longer doughy. The finished product was (according to me) not my finest culinary accomplishment, but it was a hit with my fantastic brothers and sisters-in-law, so I must have done something right. Thank you, Bon Apetit, for providing me with yet another fun dessert idea.

New York-Style Crumb Cake
From Bon Apetit Magazine

1 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 Tbsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted, warm
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour

2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/3 cups sour cream
1 tsp vanilla extract

Mix both sugars, cinnamon, and salt in a medium bowl and whisk to blend. Add warm, melted butter and stir to blend. Add flour and toss with fork until moist clumps form (topping mixture will look slightly wet). Set aside.
Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. Butter 13x9x2-inch glass baking dish. Sift flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into medium bowl. Using electric mixer, beat room-temperature butter in a large bowl until smooth. Add sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating until well blended after each addition. Add sour cream and vanilla extract and beat until just blended. Add flour mixture in 3 additions, beating just until incorporated after each addition. Transfer cake batter to prepared baking dish; spread batter evenly with rubber spatula or offset spatula. Squeeze small handfuls of topping together to form small clumps. Drop topping clumps evenly over cake batter, covering completely (topping will be thick). 
Bake cake until tester inserted into center comes out clean and topping is deep golden brown and slightly crisp, about 1 hour. Cool cake in dish on rack at least 30 minutes.
Cut cake into squares and serve slightly warm or at room temperature.
Do ahead:
Can be made 1 day ahead. Cool completely. Cover and let stand at room temperature.

Serve and savor. Happy baking!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Knotting Some Garlic

Hello my darlings,

Yesterday, to my husbands delight, I craved the smell of freshly baked bread (yes, I crave smells). I decided to try a recipe for garlic knots that I found back in October. This bread was not that difficult to make, and the finished product was well worth the labor. I used to be afraid of working with dry yeast, because in Sweden our yeast is quite different; it usually comes in a wet paste type form. When using dry yeast, I'm never quite sure how warm to make the liquid activating the yeast. However, the more bread recipes I try, the more confident I become in my attempts at reproducing this delicious international staple. And really... who doesn't love the smell of baking bread? I should bottle it and make it into a perfume.

I want to refer you to the website where I found this garlic knot recipe. One of my dear friends shared this website with me, and I want to pass it on to you. It is not only aesthetically magnificent in that the photography makes your mouth water, but the recipes are tried and true...truly delicious.

The website:
The recipe:

(Above: my garlic knots, fresh out of the oven)